Lady Gaga And Blackpink Are A Little Sweet, Very Spicy On ‘Sour Candy’

It’s officially Chromatica week, and the bops are raining down! On Thursday (May 28), a day ahead of the release of Lady Gaga‘s sixth album, the singer revealed the sweet-and-spicy, bilingual dance-hall cut “Sour Candy,” the third track off the forthcoming LP and her hotly anticipated collaboration with mega-popular K-pop girl-group Blackpink.

“I’m sour candy, so sweet then I get a little angry,” Blackpink members Jennie and Lisa rap in English on the opening verse. “I’m super psycho, make you crazy when I turn the lights low.”

Gaga comes in on the refrain, hammering home the song’s core message — don’t judge a book by its cover — by comparing herself to Werther’s caramel. “I’m hard on the outside,” she croons. “But if you give me time / Then I could make time for your love.” Gaga assures her partner that, even if they can’t crack her hard shell, at least she’s keeping it real with them. (“You want a real taste, at least I’m not a fake.”)

Rumors about the collaboration first swirled after Target leaked the Chromatica tracklist on its site, and Gaga later confirmed the lineup on April 21. The pop star told Japenese outlet TV Groove that she looked forward to working with Blackpink’s Jennie, Lisa, Rosé, and Jisoo because “they love powerful women like us, and they also wanted to celebrate me, and we had a great time together with this song.” She added, “I was excited to hear them interpret the song in Korean, and told them that the part was so creative and fun.”

“Sour Candy” follows the release of Chromatica‘s lead single, “Stupid Love,” and “Rain on Me,” Lady Gaga’s wet-and-wild collaboration with Ariana Grande that dropped a week prior, on May 22. As the first new track from Blackpink in over a year, it may be a sign of more music to come from the cool-girl band, who are slated to release a new album later this year.

Breland’s Already Putting Some Horsepower Behind His Viral Success

He might’ve started behind the scenes, but Breland‘s country-rap/R&B prowess is now front and center. The chameleonic songwriter and powerhouse vocal talent is the artist behind the infectious hybrid viral hit “My Truck,” a point of pride he makes clear early in the video when, grinning a prankster’s smile, he pushes a cowboy lip-synching his song out of the frame. This cheeky introduction is compounded by the fact that Breland didn’t even set out to make the twang-gilded hip-hop tune his own debut. “I didn’t go into the song thinking, this is going to be my breakout single,” he told MTV News. But it happened; now it’s got 15 million views. As we well know by now, a looped guitar pluck over big trap drums can have that kind of power.

Now, the 24-year-old artist is using that stylistic harmony as a blueprint for further success. Case in point: His debut self-titled EP, which dropped on May 22, spans “My Truck” (as well as its remix with Sam Hunt) and spiritually similar follow-up singles “Horseride” and “Hot Sauce,” not to mention a crowdsourced collab and two late-night musings. He’s chasing a thread — or a runaway horse. “I want it to feel like the love child of Atlanta and Nashville,” Breland said of his first project.

That might be a fitting summation of Breland’s style, if not Breland himself. He grew up singing in New Jersey, in the family church where he learned to fit his voice into a larger vocal patchwork. That training is on full display throughout the EP — his falsetto on “Beautiful Lies” climbs to the rafters before disappearing in a plume of skylight — but it also manifests in real time on Instagram. Breland has fun on his page, showing his 82,000 followers how to emulate Drake, turn Dixie Chicks’s country-pop into R&B, and give praise to his idol Stevie Wonder. They’re all flexes, but he flashes them with a bright smile that belies a studious work ethic.

His now-trademark style-hopping also explains his past experience working as a songwriter for artists like YK Osiris and Elhae, as well as his nickname, “The Pen Point Guard,” referring to his ability to pass winning melodies off to the right artists. “My Truck” might have been passed along, too, if Breland hadn’t been feeling himself in the booth.

“Trying to get somebody on the song — just as a songwriter, to pitch it to someone — didn’t really seem all that feasible,” he said. “And I was really rocking with the song, and I liked the way that I was delivering the vocals.” So he finished it and released it as himself. Then he kept going, putting more creative ideas to tape in Nashville.

You can hear that momentum continuing on the playful “Hot Sauce,” which Breland called “an anthem for a woman who is confident within herself and isn’t going to take any nonsense from anybody.” He recorded it in Nashville over some chords from producer Charlie Handsome and immediately came up with the intro melody along with the lyrics “pretty but she ain’t afraid to pop off / honey with a little bit of hot sauce.”

“Vocally, I was able to do a lot of different things with it, which is why I’m hitting some R&B type vocals,” he said. “I’m hitting some kind of Young Thug inspired, scrappy type vocals on the main hook. And then, able to hit some of the more traditional country flow.”

Breland is immensely self-aware. That doesn’t always come naturally, even for someone who’s done the work, as it’s clear he has. But Breland’s got ideas. He knows he is “a product of the internet” as well as the drive of “wanting to be a great artist.” His savvy shows through when he discusses plans for put a heavy foot on the gas to help his music travel past TikTok (where it exploded with 90,000 videos) and the web in general.

“Part of what makes ‘My Truck’ so viral is the quirkiness of it, and so I want to keep some of that in the music,” he said, “but I also want to start trending more in a direction where, even outside of just TikTok and the internet, that people in their forties and fifties can listen to some of these songs, and be like, ‘Yo, this is actually just a great song. It’s not like, a great TikTok song. It’s just a great song.'”

In practice, that means swinging the microphone back around to his audience. For one of the songs that made his EP, a gentle, country-fried love song called “In the Woulds,” he opened up a call for vocal submissions from aspiring songwriters as a way to give people “something to hope for.” Breland ended up choosing two winners, Rvshvd and Haley Mae Campbell, whose contributions made it to the final song, as sung by Chase Rice and Lauren Alaina, respectively. It’s a simple act that ties Breland to his roots.

“You’re always asking the question, ‘Would this artist say this? Could this artist sing this?’ And you construct your melodies and concepts and lyrics around this idea of what you expect another artist might want to be doing,” he said.

Now, Breland is writing for Breland. He’s ready to reach the widest audience possible: “I could always make a bunch of songs that I like, but at the end of the day, if people don’t like them, then I’m being selfish with my gift.”

Lil Nas X’s Debut Album Is 82 Percent Done And You Can Help Name It

Lil Nas X‘s debut album is slowly coming together, and the viral rapper has been graciously keeping his fans in the loop via his Twitter and Instagram bios. Currently, both read, “ALBUM: 82% DONE,” followed by a tiger emoji, signaling a 3 percent increase from last week’s status update. And in the meantime, Nas X, who released his first EP, 7, last year on the tail-end of his torrid “Old Town Road” success, has kept the industry excitedly anticipating his inaugural LP.

On Wednesday (May 27) the “Old Town Road” singer offered a sneak peak of new music with a post on his Instagram stories. The brief clip depicted the singer, wearing a gray Calvin Klein Jeans hoodie, grooving in what appears to be his living room.

Subsequently, Nas X took to Twitter to crowd-source album title suggestions. “ALL FOLLOWERS REPORT,” he wrote in all-caps. “NEED ALBUM NAME IDEAS!” Fans quickly sounded off with suggestions. “NASARATI 2,” one Twitter user responded; another chimed in with “the Lil Nas Xperience.”

While each response varied in apparent earnestness, a sense of playfulness came through, fitting for the artist’s rise from internet sensation to public persona, which has often drawn upon eccentric apparel and comedic music videos. Check out some of the most creative — and hilarious — responses, below.

Lil Nas X’s most recent drop was the futuristic music video for “Rodeo (Remix),” which released after the singer was honored with two Grammys in January and tapped Nas for a Matrix-esque, bullet-dodging, vampire storyline. While the release date for Nas X’s debut album has yet to be announced, he has alluded to it as being “more personal” than previous work, and “finna slap.”

So, will his next album be named “Ghost Town” or “Horsepower,” riffing on the Western themes that made him famous? Or will he follow a new route entirely? Weigh in on the chain — maybe Lil Nas X will pick your idea!

Ariana Grande’s Mom Is Doing The Most To Support ‘Rain On Me’

Ever since Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande dropped their shimmering, dance-floor single “Rain on Me” on Friday (May 22), the praises have rushed in like a torrential downpour, both from fans and from the pop icons themselves. The collaboration, which served as the second single off Gaga’s forthcoming album Chromatica releasing on Friday (May 29), has been met with overwhelming support, apparently leaving the singers feeling rather humbled.

On Tuesday (May 26), Gaga asked Ari in a tweet: “Are most of our streaming numbers just us being crazy and obsessed listening on repeat?” To which Grande posited a likely answer. “i think so. or just @ joangrande alone,” she responded, directing the conversation to her mother, Joan Grande.

Responding to her daughter’s message on Twitter, Joan Grande sweetly noted that she was indeed doing her part to make the song a success. She chimed in with an excited show of support. “I am definitely contributing… BUT, it is a great f*cking song, the whole world is with me on this one!!!”

Considering that many fans have dubbed “Rain on Me” the “bop of the century,” she may be correct. Grande goes on to note that she has nearly mastered the choreography, even welcoming Lady Gaga to her “family of fairies.” Check out the rest of the heartwarming interaction below.

Charli XCX Reworks A Clique Ode, Donna Missal Vents About Love, And More Songs We Like

Due to quarantine and social distancing guidelines, people feel more disconnected than ever. However, music always brings people together, so Ilse DeLange and Michael Schulte’s collaboration couldn’t have dropped at a more opportune time. In this Dutch/German team-up, “Wrong Direction” brings two artists together to lyrically discuss the disconnect in a relationship — oh, the irony. “Wrong Direction” finds the perfect balance between nostalgia and modernity, composed of a comforting, country-pop melody layered with fresh, alternating vocals that complement each other beautifully. They just don’t make duets like this anymore — simple, classic, effortless. Just the thing we need right now. —Sarina Bhutani

Lady Gaga And Ariana Grande Sing Each Other’s Praises To Celebrate ‘Rain On Me’

“One time, I met a woman who knew pain the same way I did.”

That’s Ariana Grande tweeting about Lady Gaga, her collaborator on the incredibly vibrant new dance-floor number “Rain on Me.” The song, which dropped today (May 22), pulsates with joyful energy through its shimmering house production. But as the lyrics tell, it’s a pure release — using the motion of music to process pain.

Grande continued with her journey alongside Gaga: “…who cried as much as I did, drank as much wine as I did, ate as much pasta as I did and [whose] heart was bigger than her whole body. She immediately felt like a sister to me.”

As Gaga revealed in an interview about her forthcoming album Chromatica earlier this year, the pair connected over their shared traumas and used that energy to create “Rain on Me.” “I sat with her and we talked about our lives,” Gaga said to Paper magazine. “It’s two women having a conversation about how to keep going and how to be grateful for what you do.”

Grande’s thanks continued: “She then held my hand and invited me into the beautiful world of Chromatica and together, we got to express how beautiful and healing it feels to mothafuckinnnn cry! I hope this makes u all feel as uplifted as it does for us both. i love u @ladygaga, u stunning superwoman!”

Gaga, meanwhile, took to social media to address Grande and thank her for being with her. “One time I felt like I was crying so much it would never stop. Instead of fighting it, I thought bring it on, I can do hard things,” she wrote. “@arianagrande I love you for your strength and friendship.” She also shouted out the album’s executive producer, Bloodpop, for his support. “Now when I cry instead of fighting it I say ‘I’m ready rain on me,'” Gaga wrote. “@bloodpop thank u for encouraging me to keep going when I was sad. Turns out even if you don’t feel good enough you still can be. I heard my joy back when we wrote this song. It was there, I just needed to find it.”

Experience the pure catharsis of “Rain on Me” above, and sing along when the time comes: “I’d rather be dry, but at least I’m alive.”

Dola’s Victorian ‘Running In Place’ Video Pops With Smartphone Choreography

If you’ve seen actress/performer Condola Rashad as high-powered attorney Kate Sacker on Billions, you know the way she can work the room in a suit. But under the musical moniker of Dola, she’s set up a vast blank canvas onto which she can paint any kind of cosmic vision she likes. As she tells MTV News, her dynamic new visual for “Running in Place,” which premieres today (May 22), “brought me to a very Victorian place.”

That’s only part of the story. “Running in Place” is the third release from her EP Space Daughter, which she calls her “playful ode to the divine feminine.” As such, each visual so far has had its own distinct vibe and aura. “Running in Place” is, in Dola’s words, “a moody song about the death of mystery brought about by the taking over of dating apps.” And the vision, which she co-directed, brings that particular tragedy to life.

For each of Space Daughter‘s visual treatments, Dola herself appears as the titular being, ushering in a different side of herself and the journey. “The idea is that at the top of each video, she does something that basically allows her to manifest into another version of herself, to tell a different story of herself. Her story,” Dola said. By the end of the violet-tinged “Running in Place” video, a black-clad mourning Dola even lies down flowers at a headstone that reads “R.I.P. Mystery.” “I like when I meet somebody, not knowing everything about them. And there’s something about the dating apps where you do the whole background check before you even meet the person.”

This wasn’t quite her idea from the jump; in fact, it took a bit of distance to discover, which she did while listening back to the Space Daughter songs she created with collaborators.

“All of 2019 was manifestation year for me. I drew up these mood boards. I drew up these treatments and these outlines for these videos last January. And then we filmed these in August,” she said of the ambitious Space Daughter project. She knew once she found the song’s bridge — anchored around the lyrics “swipe to the left then we swipe to the right” — that one of the video’s central images would be based around a smartphone. “I knew I wanted choreography with the cell phone. I knew that. I was like, ‘You have to be dancing with this cell phone! I know that.'”

That dancing comes via Dola and flanked support all seated in corsets in a Victorian interior, the set design matching the song’s baroque strings. But the phones in their hands are purposeful anachronisms. “I liked that juxtaposition between something that was antique and modern,” she said. “I knew I wanted that in the same image, of the constriction of what it is that I feel sometimes with dating apps.”

She’s also felt walled in about her sound as an artist, which doesn’t always follow along straight lines. She views the musical and visual components of “Running in Place,” for example, as “a beautiful mix of Stevie Wonder and Tim Burton.” But her previous Space Daughter entries — the gentle, elemental “Blue” and the sensual, bombastic “Give Up the Gold” — couldn’t be more different from that vibe (and from each other).

“What excites me is, as you could see from ‘Give Up the Gold’ or ‘Running in Place,’ [is how] I think people are all going to be, ‘Wait, what? Where are we going now?'” she said.

Dola still has several new shades of herself to reveal as she rolls out the rest of Space Daughter. But what’s consistent, even if the music itself varies from track to track, is the inspiration. “To me, I just felt like, even as an actor, my work is inspired by music. Every single character I’ve played has had a playlist that always builds from musical pieces,” she said. “So it’s truly shaped the way that I walked through my life.”

To that end, Dola is donating 100 percent of her personal proceeds of “Running in Place” during June, July, and August to benefit VH1’s Save the Music Foundation — which will aid in music education at an unprecedented time due to the coronavirus pandemic. “As schools are moving towards remote learning, these music students and teachers have kind of lost the ability to express themselves at school and in person, and a lot of these students have limited technology at home,” she said. “So I appreciated doing what they can to make sure that the students continue to learn about making music in these limited ways.”

See that inspiration in action by checking out Dola’s “Running in Place” video when it drops later today.

Lana Del Rey Calls Out Critics And Fellow Artists In Impassioned New Note

Last August, Lana Del Rey released her sixth album, Norman Fucking Rockwell to rapturous acclaim. By the end of 2019, it landed high on numerous publications’ best-of lists, and it even earned an Album of the Year nomination at the Grammys just a few months later.

But it was a long journey for Lana, as she writes out in a pointed new note posted to Instagram early Thursday (May 21). “With all of the topics women are finally allowed to explore I just want to say over the last ten years I think it’s pathetic that my minor lyrical exploration detailing my sometimes submissive or passive roles has often made people say I’ve set women back hundreds of years,” she wrote.

The catalyst for her note, it appears, is the recent chart success of several female artists she mentions by name. “Now that Doja Cat, Ariana [Grande], Camila [Cabello], Cardi B, Kehlani and Nicki Minaj and Beyoncé have had number ones with songs about being sexy, wearing no clothes, fucking, cheating, etc — can I please go back to singing about being embodied, feeling beautiful by being in love even if the relationship is not perfect, or dancing for money — or whatever I want — without being crucified or saying that I’m glamorizing abuse??????”

“I’m fed up with female writers and alt singers saying that I glamorize abuse when in reality I’m just a glamorous person singing about the realities of what we are all now seeing are very prevalent abusive relationships all over the world,” she continued.

She also clarified that her frustrations are also rooted in, as she sees it, whose perspective gets incorporated in feminist art and whose doesn’t: “There has to be a place in feminism for women who look and act like me — the kind of woman who says no but men hear yes — the kind of women who are slated mercilessly for being their authentic, delicate selves. The kind of women who get their own stories and voices taken away from them by stronger women or by men who hate women.”

The note also mentions a decade of “bullshit reviews” she received and how she feels her art has “paved the way for other women to stop ‘putting on a happy face’ and to just be able to say whatever the hell they wanted to in their music,” unlike, she writes, her own early experiences. One of those “bullshit reviews” may be storied critic Ann Powers’s September 2019 take on Norman Fucking Rockwell, which was largely celebratory but also noted, as criticism does, “uncooked” spots and “B-plus poetics.” Lana did not agree, tweeting back at Powers that “there’s nothing uncooked about me. To write about me is nothing like it is to be with me. Never had a persona.”

This interaction has resurfaced again among the reactions to Lana’s new note, which range from the fans of the artists she mentioned defending their faves to others calling out what they see as hypocrisy to still others commenting on the inherent racial politics of a white artist calling out largely nonwhite artists. There are also those defending her and urging detractors to focus on her larger points about the importance of women’s points of view in music.

Amid all the discussion the statement is generating, it’s easy to miss a key detail Lana concludes with: She’s got two forthcoming books of poetry as well as a brand-new album set to drop on September 5. “I’m sure there will be tinges of what I’ve been pondering” in the new music, she wrote. While we wait to discover what that might sound like — and how producer Jack Antonoff, of whom she posted a FaceTime virtual jam session photo, will help shape it — read her note in full above.

How Yungblud Stays Productive In Quarantine: Cooking Yorkshire Roasts, Homemade Tattoos

In this age of self-isolation and quarantine, it’s never been more important to check in on each other and to connect. This goes for artists, too, who have been social distancing alongside us: livestreaming concerts and hangouts, creating their own talk shows, and… well, that’s what we want them to tell us, with Remote Access.

Last month, the neon-haired, pop-punk revivalist Yungblud released a blissfully metallic anti-anxiety anthem, “Weird,” along with a homemade video shot from the roof of a Los Angeles Airbnb, where the singer is currently social distancing with a few bandmates and his manager. Featuring lyrics detailing hard-won battles with mental health (“I can’t think, I can’t lie / I feel anxious all the time / If I smiled I would be lyin’”) overcome collectively (“Come hold my hand / Hold it tight”), the song came primed for its quarantine debut; but, Yungblud explains, it was written long before the coronavirus pandemic reached its peak.

“I was in what I thought was the weirdest time of my life ever imaginable,” he says, referring to a moment when his meteoric rise, dotted by collaborations with Halsey and Machine Gun Kelly and capped by a sold-out show at London’s O2 Academy Brixton, collided with personal heartbreak and surfacing depression. “But then all this happened and I was like, whoa, I could not have been more wrong if I tried.”

Despite feeling as if he’s been “put in a chicken coop” in quarantine, and missing his U.K. home (he has been calling his mom and sister most often), Yungblud is staying productive. He’s completed a new album, which he told Kerrang! will be “naïve and full of contradictions” and is “building the world” around it prior to release. He’s also staying positive, and spreading that positivity to fans around the world, particularly with the weekly YouTube Originals show Stay Home With: Yungblud, in which his stay-at-home crew document their most candid moments together: dancing around the apartment in their underwear, cooking (Yorkshire pudding is a favorite), and checking in on fans. The artist does not shy away from vulnerability, either, opening up about the sadness he felt after being forced to miss a close family member’s funeral; the fourth and final episode of the weekly series premiered on Monday (May 18).

It’s all part of the Yungblud experiment, which is less about Dominic Harrison, the 22-year-old kid from Doncaster, and more about providing people a sense of belonging to those that need it — anyone who’s ever felt alone and isolated. “Anybody out there who feels strange, and unstable, and like they don’t know what’s going on, I feel the same as you. And we’re together in that feeling.” MTV News calls up Yungblud to check in.

MTV News: You’re quarantined with your bandmates and your manager in Los Angeles, and you are working on an album. What has collaborating been like during this time?

Yungblud: To be honest, I’m just in a house with my best mates. When we say, “Oh, it’s my manager, or my photographer, or my guitar player,” those are just official terms. We’re just all best mates. And I think we’re just having as much fun as we possibly can. Because I feel quite lonely, and to connect to people, and to connect to my fan base, and to put out content going, “Is anybody else feeling the way I am?” and getting a response saying, “Yes, I am,” comforts everyone. And that’s what we do it for.

MTV News: How has isolation affected your music and your creative process?

Yungblud: It’s just about out-of-the-box thinking right now. We’ve literally been put in a chicken coop by the higher powers that be, and I don’t want to be a chicken right now. I want to be a human being. And I want to connect to people and make people feel like, yes, it is weird. It is bizarre. But as long as we stick together, we’re all going to be OK. So we’re just trying to have as much fun as possible and just provide laughs. We’ve got a YouTube Originals show, where it’s me, no insecurities, just me in my underpants, running around the kitchen, being an idiot. I’m kind of happy to show that side of me, because it’s just what I do at home.

MTV News: Who have you been calling or texting the most lately?

Yungblud: I’m calling my family a lot. I’m calling my mom a lot. I think I’m telling the people I love that I love them a lot more, which is a good thing. And I’ve been calling my fan base, I’ve been Skyping so many people all the time. Because if anybody knows Yungblud and what it’s about, it ain’t about me. I’m not just Yungblud. Yungblud’s an idea and an ideology that Dom connects to, and Frankie in Jersey connects to, and Joey in Australia connects to.

It’s an idea that you will never be lonely, and you will never feel isolated, and you’ll never feel like an outsider here, even though you might be an outsider in the “real world.” It’s a place to exist to be solely who you are, no matter what you are, color you are, race you are, sexuality you are, however you identify. You’re just you, and we celebrate that. And I think right now, for people to feel calm, we’ve got to say connected. So, I just call my fan base and just check in. I’m like, “How’s it going? What’s up?”

MTV News: Yeah, there is a great moment in your YouTube show, Stay Home With: Yungblud where you call fans, and everyone just gets so excited. 

Yungblud: Dude, it’s mad everywhere across the world. I just needed to check in with them, and I always do that. I do it every month but, as opposed to doing 10 this month, I did 50. The only reason I got into this whole thing was to feel like I belong somewhere, so I call them to remind myself that I belong somewhere. And when you can’t be on stage, when you can’t meet them, when you can’t smell them, when you can’t touch them, you’ve got to connect with him online.

MTV News: There was also a scene where you had talked to your mom about getting a stick-and-poke tattoo.

Yungblud: Oh, she’s mental, man. They just don’t get it, do they? She’s like, “That’s what happens in prison.” I’m like, “Mom, no it doesn’t. It’s chill. Everyone does it.” She’s funny. My mom does not hold back anything she thinks. My mom’s worse than me. As soon as she opens her mouth, you don’t know what she’s going to say.

MTV News: Did you end up giving yourself a tattoo?

Yungblud: No, I can’t get a hold of any ink. Soon as I can get some ink, I will.

MTV News: Do you know what you’ll give yourself?

Yungblud: I always wanted to get “verisimilitude” — it’s my favorite word — tattooed on my skin. Verisimilitude, ah! It’s like the appearance of being true and real. Someone read me that out of a book once. I was like, “That’s a sick word.”

MTV News: I’ve never heard it before!

Yungblud: It’s like, you close your eyes, ASMR. Verisimilitude. Verisimilitude.

MTV News: You released “Weird” during the coronavirus pandemic, but you actually had written it beforehand. That song makes so much sense for this particular moment, but what kind of space were you in when you wrote it?

Yungblud: I was in what I thought was the weirdest time of my life ever imaginable. I felt like I was trying to catch smoke all the time. I was going through a period in my life where I was taking another step in a journey to coming of age. Everything was weird to me. The world felt weird. Weird, weird, weird, weird, weird, weird, weird, weird, weird, weird, weird, weird, weird — it was going through my brain.

And in that moment of vertigo, I figured out that I needed to accept the parts of myself I didn’t like, celebrate the parts of myself I do like, and realize there’s just a load of stuff out of my control. Once you realize that, and you have a moment like that, and realize that the things you’ve been going through for the past 18 months have just been a weird time of your life, you figure out that everything’s going to be alright. Because there are going to be many more weird times. Everyone’s trying to grab onto something that’s familiar, because nothing is familiar right now. And I just wanted to provide people with an opportunity to escape, and to come together and dance around your kitchen like an idiot.

MTV News: What else have you been doing to stay creative during isolation?

Yungblud: I have been cooking, I will have you know. I loved cooking when I was a nipper, but I’ve been touring, so I never really cook. So, it was kind of good to get back into that. My guitar player’s so much better than me; he’s literally like Gordon Ramsay. I think I’m going to open a restaurant; I keep saying this. We’ll call it “Food for the Slightly Sad Yet Annoyingly Energetic.” Come pick up your pasta.

MTV News: What is it that you’ve been cooking?

Yungblud: Adam made a curry last night with homemade naan bread. I made beef udon. A good old Yorkshire Sunday dinner, a roast, which is what we have in the U.K. on Sunday. You get a big joint of meat, put it in the oven, let that cook, vegetables, Yorkshire puddings. For American people, a Yorkshire pudding is like a savory pancake that you put gravy on; it’s to die for. I miss home, I miss Sunday dinners, I miss cups of tea, and I miss fish and chips with loads of salt and vinegar on it. If you miss the U.K., you’ve got to bring the U.K. to you.

MTV News: What else can we expect to see from Yungblud coming out of quarantine?

Yungblud: There’s so much coming. The album’s done, man. I’ve just got to figure out how to build the world of this record in this situation. To build the world of an album, it’s hard enough when you’ve got all the tools, and all the paint brushes to paint the picture. But right now, I’m stuck in between four walls trying to build it. I’ve been working on my second comic book, so keep your eyes peeled on that as well. I can’t be not busy or I go mental.

Lorde Gives Fans A ‘Delicious’ Update On New Music: ‘It’s Got Its Own Colours Now’

Way back in April, comedian and writer Joel Kim Booster tried to manifest something massive. “Lorde honey now is the time,” he tweeted, attempting to summon the pop star from the unofficial break she’s been taking since her Melodrama tour wrapped in late 2018. A month later, Booster’s plea seems like it might’ve worked — at least it terms of giving an update.

On Tuesday night (May 19), Lorde reemerged to give an important update to her fans via email, one that spans her current musical state of mind and is very good news for Booster and other fans. “I can tell you, this new thing,” she wrote, “it’s got its own colours now. If you know anything about my work, you’ll know what that means.” (Lorde’s got synesthesia, a condition that, in effect, allows her to associate certain colors with non-visual senses, including hearing music.)

This latest email is the first such dispatch since one in November 2019, in which she shared that she’d spent a portion of that year “working away on the new songs” and that she was dealing with the death of her dog, Pearl. Pearl comes up in this latest note, too, as does her grief about losing him. But it’s quite hopeful: After she allowed herself some time, she got back in the studio in December and “happy, playful things” emerged.

“I felt my melodic muscles flexing and strengthening,” she wrote, also mentioning Jack Antonoff — who helmed Melodrama with her — traveling to New Zealand to work with her, as well as the two of them working together in Los Angeles. They’re still working on it together via FaceTime during self-isolation.

Oh, and that music? “The work is so fucking good, my friend,” Lorde wrote. “I am truly jazzed for you to hear it.”

Elsewhere, the 23-year-old mentions how she had to take some time to re-center after her last tour in order to “make some food, grow some stuff, go to the beach a bunch, finally acknowledge (and kick) my social media addiction.” She’s also grown her hair quite long once again, perhaps even like it was in the Pure Heroine days.

“You’ll probably be pleased to know my hair is big and long again. I think after Melodrama came out I said I wouldn’t put out another record until my hair was long — both because hair takes time to grow, and I knew I needed time, and because I knew the next record would require the longest and wildest hair yet.”

Lorde has also seen your pleas, and she gets it. But she’s asking you (and Joel Kim Booster) to be patient.

“I’ve been looking at some of your notes online, and I can feel the (extremely sweet, EXTREMELY flattering) desperation creeping back into your voices,” she wrote. “But as I get older I realise there’s something to be said for the pleasant feeling of waiting for something of quality to become available to you.” She likens it to baking bread or waiting for a package to arrive, celebrating the anticipation as a “delicious activity.”

Read Lorde’s note in full, as captured by a fan account, above. Then, see some of the fan reactions to her hopeful message below.