With Beck’s twelfth album Morning Phase due at the end of this month, the dynamic singer-songwriter shares a second taste of what’s to come from the album. We first heard “Blue Moon” last month and now we get the dreamy, massive second single “Waking Light” premiered by NPR. The Line of Best Fit reports it was produced by Jack White and recorded at his Third Man Records studio. It serves as the album’s closer and what a gorgeous note to end on. “Waking Light” screams of ’70s psychedelic rock with more polished edges.
Stream “Waking Light” via Spotify below. Morning Phase will be released February 25. Also, read excerpts from his NPR All Things Considered interview below.
On making the album:
I tried to make this record a few times. I went to Nashville a few years ago and I was gonna make a Nashville record. I did a lot of recording there, and it was one of those things where it didn’t quite come together. That’s really the beginning of the record, is going to Nashville. But there was something about bringing it back here [to Los Angeles]. I got the band that I did most of Sea Change with, I got all of them together, and it just felt right. The songs started to work and it started to feel like a record.
On Daniel Johnston:
I got to New York right when Daniel Johnston had been there. I didn’t know who he was yet; he’s one of these self-made songwriters who was recording on a little cassette deck at his parents’ house and making his own albums, but I wasn’t aware of those. So I’d be just trading songs with different people and I learned a couple of his songs. I thought they were old folk songs, and I had been performing them for a while when finally somebody told me, “No, no, no—that’s a Daniel Johnston song.” These great songs were sort of almost like lost classics.
On considering releasing the album independently:
I’ve been talking about that for years. I think it comes down to the people that I work with, management: That’s a lot of extra work for everybody. So it’s easier to go somewhere where that’s what they’re doing night and day. I had some friends, people that I’d worked with for a long time at Capitol, so I ended up there. But I think it was having that deadline, it being an intensive thing, that helped ultimately kind of make the whole thing feel cohesive.