With just one week to go until OneRepublic unveil their brand new album Oh My My, the band have treated us to another song from it to get us even more excited.
‘A.I.’ is their highly anticipated collaboration with Peter Gabriel, and boy was it worth waiting for! The five-minute electronic track is the most boundary-pushing track from Oh My My so far, but it actually works pretty perfectly.
The track opens with frontman Ryan Tedder’s familiar vocals for the first verse and chorus, before Peter Gabriel takes over for the second verse. The track is hypnotically upbeat, and around the 3:20 mark, there’s a great instrumental part which seemingly brings the song to an end. However, after seconds of silence, the track is transformed into something quite haunting, featuring Gabriel’s vocal. It’s almost as if two songs have been merged into one, which is an unusual yet mesmerising concept.
However, as Tedder revealed in FAULT Magazine this week, the collaboration almost didn’t happen. When asked to share an interesting story, the band’s frontman revealed how he accidentally stood up Gabriel twice.
“I’ve obviously got random tour stories and stuff like that, but I think my most embarrassing story is my Peter Gabriel story. He’s one of my favourite recording artists and this happened last summer. It was during Ed Sheeran’s Wembley Stadium shows and I connected with Peter through a mutual friend. One day, I got an email from my manager who had talked to his manager and said that Peter wanted to have coffee and get to know me. I went to Peter Gabriel’s place in Notting Hill and I worship him so I was like ‘This is incredible’. I hung out with him all night, we had dinner, listened to music and then it ended. And at the end of the night, I was like ‘Okay, that was amazing, let’s get together again soon.’
“What I didn’t know was that there was a miscommunication between his manager and my manager – so his people thought that I had booked to write with him Saturday and Sunday. The way it was explained to me was that we were only meeting up for coffee. So I hung out with him on Friday, had a great night, and Saturday – without knowing – I stood him up. He came into the studio at 10am and waited for me until 2pm and I never showed up. I didn’t know that I was supposed to be there. And the next day – I was also booked. The message that I stood him up on Saturday never got to me, so I didn’t know. And then Sunday – AGAIN. As I was driving to the airport to leave, I get a phone call from Peter. He had been in the studio again for the second day for 2 hours. And he was less than happy with me.
“So I was on the phone with him for 20 minutes just apologizing while emailing my manager telling him that I stood up Peter 2 days in a row. I was completely mortified and upset. That was my favourite recording artist and I just completely blew him off 2 days in a row. And we made up – after I continuously sent him emails and phone calls cause I was horrified that he was going to hate me – and well, it took two months to make up, but he eventually agreed to work together and now he’s featured on our album. And it’s one of the best songs on the album. It all worked well, but that’s my worst story. My idol is Peter Gabriel and I blew him off two days in a row. It’s the single worst thing that’s happened to my career so far.”
We’re glad everything worked out in the end!
‘A.I.’ is available now as an instant grat if you preorder Oh My My.
Are you as excited as us for the new OneRepublic album? Let us know on Twitter @CelebMix