Alicia Keys is a songwriter, not a superhero. But the music video for “It’s On Again” – her track for the upcoming soundtrack for The Amazing Spider-Man 2 – conjures a Spidey-like level of drama: “There’s no day off for heroes,” Keys belts into the camera, between sweeping images of the New York City skyline. “And even when I’m tired, ‘go’ is the only word I know.”
The song’s producer, the everywhere-at-once Pharrell Williams, also makes an appearance in the video, fiddling with a synthesizer as he watches a wall of security cameras. After rebooting his supercomputer, the city’s skyscrapers begin throbbing to the song’s light-groove wave form. Elsewhere, guest rapper Kendrick Lamar also pops in alongside Spider-Man composer Hans Zimmer.
Back in March, Zimmer and Pharrell spoke to Rolling Stone about their frutiful (if, on paper, unlikely) collaboration. “I had an idea, and he lifted it to new heights,” Williams says of “It’s On Again.” “I had a little dirt-hill idea, and he’s turned it into a mountain. Alicia is singing and she did some co-writing on it too, and with Kendrick, it just feels like we might have our own little Mt. Rushmore here.”
Williams even called Zimmer his “mentor” and a “big brother,” while noting the composer’s “educational” influence on his music. “Before, I was basically getting my jollies from aesthetic, shallow pleasures because it was all surface,” he said. “When I understood the importance of purpose and the gravitas in intention, that’s when my music started to become as close to magic as it could be. When you dig into his scores, they’re magical.”
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 will hit theaters on May 2nd, with the soundtrack set for release on April 22nd.