Hyperspace
by Beck

Album: Hyperspace (2019)

Songfacts®:

  • Hyperspace is a minimalist album named after a move in the video game Defender, which Beck played as a youngster. He explained to Q magazine: "Before the asteroid would kill you, you could press 'hyperspace' and go somewhere else. I think this is a desire for many of us right now, wishing there was some sort of button we could push to leave the planet, escape all the pain and go somewhere better."

    Beastie Boys made a similar reference on their 1998 track "Body Movin'": "And if you play Defender I could be your hyperspace."
  • The song itself is about the constant barrage of communication through technology in daily life. In today's culture, we're constantly in touch with others through texts, emails, social media etc. The more Beck consumes this hyper-connectivity, the more he longs for human contact.

    Beauty, light and crushing life
    Wanna feel more and more


    "I think there's positive aspects to it," Beck told The Independent. "But the more you consume it, the more hungry you are, and the hunger that I find at the end of it, if you pull the string, it's a hunger for contact, for human contact. This constant inundation we have, although it's feeding us with something, it's making us more hungry… That's what's underlying a lot of these songs, that longing, but the context is our current moment, technology, the acceleration of life. But it's not different from the longing of Hank Williams or Maria Callas or John Lennon."
  • Seven of the album's 11 tracks, including "Hyperspace," were co-written and co-produced by Pharrell Williams. This song also features a vocal and songwriting contribution from the Georgia musician Terrell Hines.
  • Beck released a visual edition of his Hyperspace album on August 12, 2020. A collaboration between the singer and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, each song from Hyperspace: A.I. Exploration is paired with its own accompanying NASA destination. The video for the title track, for instance, comes with photos and visualizations from the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite.

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