Beyoncé Makes Our Lion King Dreams Come True

The little kid inside of us is screaming.

There’s no better feeling than a childhood dream realized, especially when the idol of or adult-selves is the one making it happen. Beyoncé just gave us that rare feeling with the release of “Spirit,” the first song off of Lion King-accompanying album, The Lion King: The Gift.

The album is just that: a gift. It comes on top of the one single that Bey was expected to make for the new, live-action remake of The Lion King, in which Beyoncé voices of the beloved character, Nala. Leave it to the pop superstar to surpass all expectations.

The Gift will carry a hefty lineup of African artists and producers, a clear reference to the film’s East African setting. In a statement, Queen Bey calls the soundtrack “sonic cinema,” which will give listeners a “new experience of storytelling.”

“Spirit” is listeners’ first taste of that promise. The track opens with two men singing in Swahili, a snippet of authentic Africana influence which continues throughout the piece. Beyoncé lends her honey-like vocals to the very Disney, very uplifting track. A gospel choir—resounding vocals, harmonies, claps and all—adds a layer of interest to the song. A power-ballad at heart, “Spirit” has an R&B undertone, as well.

According to the singer, the song will appear at a “pivotal scene” in the film. The Lion King hits the big screen on July 18th and the album will be released the following day. Once the album drops, it’s all Hakuna Matata from there.

Listen to the track below.

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