Full disclosure: What follows is a very low-stakes conspiracy theory, mixing one part internet rumor with two parts “dumb thing I noticed and am obsessed with.” So! Unless you’ve been living under a rock, or are Dustin, you’ve probably heard about Silk Sonic, the ’70s-inspired supergroup formed by Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak. They’re friends, they started jamming together, one thing led to another, and BAM — they’ve got a collab album called An Evening With Silk Sonic coming out, with narration from funk legend Bootsy Collins. Or at least, we’ve been TOLD the album is coming out. That’s what they’ve been assuring us for months now, ever since the first single — “Leave The Door Open” — debuted in March. That track hit the top of the Billboard charts (a first for .Paak, an eighth for Mars) and the pair performed it live on every award show they could get an invite to. That run culminated in June, when they wrapped up their performance at the BET Awards by asking the audience if they wanted to hear a new track off the album… only to then yell “naw!” and play themselves offstage with an encore of the same… damn… song. It was frankly masterful.
The pair are trafficking in a very specific sort of nostalgia, not only with Silk Sonic’s sound but with the level of hype and prolonged build-up the album is getting. So far the album still doesn’t have a set release date, though a second track — titled “Skate” — arrived last Friday. Take a look:
That’s it. Two songs in four months with no telling when or how much more we’re gonna get. With little to do but wait, I’ve been left to, uh, use my imagination — and my mind is stuck on two particularly flavorful lyrics from the songs, and one Bey-autiful rumor. Let’s start with my favorite line from “Leave The Door Open,” a swooner about enticing your lover to swing by your house offering weed and steak. No really:
“If you smoke (what you smoke?) I got the haze (Purple Haze)
And if you’re hungry, girl, I got filets (woo-woo)”
Why do I love that line? Because it would absolutely work on me. And that was enough, until I listened to “Skate” last week and heard THIS line:
“I can smell your sweet perfume
Mmmm, ya smell better than a barbecue”
AGAIN WITH THE MEAT! And again with me thinking, “Yeah honestly, I’d take that as a compliment — BBQs smell great.” So here I am, wondering if dropping sexy meat references is going to be Silk Sonic’s grand thematic thru-line, and then I see whispered, unverified hints that goddamn Beyoncé is going to be a guest artist on a track on the album.
.@Beyonce has recorded a feature for a Silk Sonic collab, according to music executive Darone Bowers. The rumoured feature is supposedly part of Silk Sonic’s upcoming album. 👀 pic.twitter.com/pQ0ZmGnXJ3— BEYTHOVEN (@beyonceparkwood) June 29, 2021
Is that shady? Yes. There’s no official word or anything that I can find, and yet — remember when Coldplay realized they couldn’t hold down an entire Super Bowl halftime show by themselves so they brought in Beyoncé and Bruno (each probably the two best halftime performers in recent memory) to have a dance-off in the middle of their set? And then Chris Martin ruined it by joining them onstage again? Yeah, that was great.
What I’m saying is, I very much hope that Beyoncé is gonna be on the album, and that continued meat references will be a thing, and somehow this leads to Beyoncé singing about, I dunno, wagyu or something. The end.