Pharrell Says New N.E.R.D Music Is Done, Feels Like ‘In Search Of’

Pharrell has revealed he’s completed “twelve N.E.R.D. records.” In an exclusive excerpt for GQ from his upcoming new book, Carbon, Pressure & Time: A Book of Jewels, Skateboard P opened up to Tyler, the Creator about his latest studio creations. 

As Tyler grilled him about his “new sh*t that was supposed to come out ages ago,” Williams insisted that he has been truly working. Pharrell then asserted that the new N.E.R.D. tracks resemble the band’s debut album, In Search Of, particularly in feeling

“I’m out here in Paris, I just ended up doin’ twelve N.E.R.D records,” he said about the band. “Listen, you’ll have something to ride to. I mean, look, like I told you, they’re big choruses, but you know, out of nowhere, I’ll just come out of nowhere with the three-bar, crazy-nuts chords that go three-bar to four-bar to eight-bar. It’s good bro, it’s good. This is like that feeling that I felt when we made In Search Of.

I won’t sit here and tell you that they were hits. I knew it was different, and I knew there won’t be nothing out there like this. But I’m talking about the feeling. I wanted to do everything. I wanted feelings. I wanted the motherf**kin’ great composition. I wanted great chords. I want to use chords I never used before, and not just the dreamy ones. The ones that I’ve never done, that I f**kin’ hated. But using them in ways to get to other chords where the changes are such a release. And then, lyrically, the harmonies here…all the songs just have rainbow harmonies.”

In Search Of, named after Leonard Nimoy’s paranormal television series from the late ’70s, served as N.E.R.D.’s debut LP. The album dropped on Aug. 6, 2001 and leaned into alternative, punk, Hip-Hop, and soul for its musical influences. 

Chad, Shay, and Skateboard P featured various artists for the youthfully spirited album. Guest features included Lee Harvey, Vita, Kelis, Pusha T, and No Malice. The album would peak at No.56 on the Billboard 200 and No.31 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.