Ahead of Avicii‘s first posthumous album release, the late DJ’s management team has released the debut and lead single, SOS.
Avicii (born Tim Bergling) was working on the single before his sudden passing in 2018. It was released across all streaming platforms on Wednesday.
SOS features one of Bergling’s previous collaborators, singer Aloe Blacc — who featured on the 2013 smash hit, Wake Me Up.
The upcoming album — Bergling’s third overall — was named Tim, by his parents, Klas Bergling and Anki Lidén. They chose the name in honour of their son.
Tim will feature the 16 unreleased tracks Bergling was working intensely on shortly before his death.
It is also set to feature work from a number of various musicians and producers, including Kristoffer Fogelmark and Albin Needler, who co-wrote and produced SOS.
The two were longtime friends of Bergling before he passed. They worked together on the Pure Grinding single, which was featured on Stories (2015), Bergling’s last album.
“We started working on SOS the second week we were there,” said Fogelmark in a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the single.
“It was the second song we wrote,” he continued. “That was the result of many different seeds going back and forth. When we felt that we had it, everybody in the room — all of us — started singing melodies. But Tim was very particular in how you’d sing certain different phrases.”
“He’d have you sing one phrase, like 50 times. Over and over,” added Needler. “At first, we didn’t really understand, like, ‘Why are we repeating this line?’ But then, when we finally got it, I was like, ‘OK, now I understand why he did that.'”
Fogelmark later revealed that although Blacc recorded his vocals after Bergling’s passing, he was the singer that Bergling has in mind for SOS.
“It was important to us,” said Needler. “That was Tim’s vision in a way. They had a lot of history together, since they did Wake Me Up.”
Blacc, 40, also took the time to reflect on his experience collaborating with Bergling.
“I remember when we did Wake Me Up,” he said in the video. “That was huge. That was a moment that defined the real impact that he had on music.”
“SOS is… I feel really honoured that he asked for me,” he admitted. “I feel like it was a song that was probably ahead of its time when he wrote it. He wrote those lyrics obviously about some of his battles.”
SOS is now available on all major streaming platforms. Tim is scheduled for a June 6 release through Sony.
To commemorate his legacy, all proceeds of the album will go toward the Tim Bergling Foundation — a mental health and suicide prevention charity founded and maintained by his parents.
It’s now been nearly a year since Bergling’s tragic death.
He passed away on April 20, 2018, at the age of 28. His body was found in Muscat, Oman. The death was ruled a suicide.
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