I am fascinated by the creative potential of “musical theology,” a pre-Enlightenment relic from the tradition in which J.S. Bach thrived. For Bach and his cronies, music theory was a direct extension and reflection of metaphysical and religious truths. The major chord, three notes in one sound, was the trinity; equal temperament (a practical approximation that detunes each note slightly from the mathematical ratios of just intonation) represented the sinning imperfections of humankind, a musical Fall from God-made purity.
“Under Pressure” is in the key of D major — two half steps up from C. If you’re working in a DAW, you can click and drag the notes of the C major scale outlined above up two half steps and voila! D major! However, we’ll spell them out for you here as well: