It's very good that society has come to its senses and deemed Paul McCartney to be the most relevant Beatle. He's done a lot of work on his end to earn that title, too, joining the meme generation and protesting America's increasing stupidities. Now, Macca might be trying to cash in on the prominence that's been renewed since his last album, 2013's New, with a record out September 7. It's called Egypt Station, features production by millennial hitmakers Ryan Tedder and Greg Kurstin and the first two songs are out now.
"I Don't Know" is one of McCartney's patented piano ballads, the kind that singer-songwriters in the mid-00s ripped off to varying success. It's a somber track that's offset by the joy of "Come on to Me," which has McCartney in rollicking Ram mode. In an exclusive interview with DIY magazine, he says that he hooked up with Tedder to "do something commercial," inspired by the collaborative process of modern pop songwriting. He also has many tidbits to share about working with Kanye West on "All Day" and the Rihanna collab "FourFiveSeconds." They're as weird and unbelievable as you'd expect, such as this inside story of how the latter song came to be:
[Kanye and I] had two or three afternoons where we just hung out together in a Beverly Hills hotel in the bungalows out the back, and he had his engineer and was set up with a couple of microphones in case anything happened. I was tootling around on guitar, and Kanye spent a lot of time just looking at pictures of Kim on his computer. I’m thinking, are we ever gonna get around to writing?! But it turns out he was writing. That’s his muse. He was listening to this riff I was doing and obviously he knew in his mind that he could use that, so he took it, sped it up and then somehow he got Rihanna to sing on it.
I truly have no words but I'm happy that the experience was eye-opening for Paul. Listen to both "I Don't Know and "Come on to Me" below and read the rest of the interview with McCartney here.
Phil is on Twitter.
This article originally appeared on Noisey CA.