Queen guitarist Brian May announced the release of his first solo song in more than two decades.

Titled “New Horizons,” the track will be launched from the NASA mission control center in Greenbelt, Md., on New Year’s Day.

May, a doctor of astrophysics, is officially affiliated with NASA’s New Horizons probe, which took off in 2006 and will perform the most distant flypast in history when it encounters the space object Ultima Thule on the edge of the Solar System on Jan. 1.

You can watch a teaser trailer below.

“This project has energized me in a new way,” May said in a statement. “For me, it’s been an exciting challenge to bring two sides of my life together – astronomy and music. It was Alan Stern, the Project Instigator of this amazing NASA mission, who threw down the glove last May. He asked if I could come up with a theme for Ultima Thule which could be played as the probe reached this new destination.”

May noted he was "inspired by the idea that this is the furthest that the hand of man has ever reached. … To me, it epitomizes the human spirit’s unceasing desire to understand the universe we inhabit. Everyone who has devoted so much energy to this mission since its launch in January 2006 will be feeling they are actually inside that small but intrepid vehicle – only about the size of a grand piano – as it pulls off another spectacular close encounter.”

“New Horizons (Ultima Thule Mix)” is May’s first solo release since the single “Why Don’t We Try Again,” taken from his 1998 album Another World. The new song, co-written with Don Black, includes a recording of the late Professor Stephen Hawking.



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