By Sarah Carroll
There are few artists who’ve experienced a bigger breakout year than Halsey.
The 22-year-old was already a successful electropop artist after dropping her 2015 debut album Badlands, but thanks to her seven-times platinum collaboration with The Chainsmokers, she’s gone mainstream.
Now she’s gearing up to release her second album, Hopeless Fountain Kingdom. Just last week, she dropped the music video for the lead single, “Now Or Never.”
“‘Now Or Never’ is about these two young lovers who are impatient. They want each other to stop sending mixed signals. It’s this vibey song that you can put on in the car and close your eyes to,” she explained. “But in the context of my album, it’s a Romeo and Juliet story. It’s about two people who need to make their love work now because there are forces trying to keep them apart.”
HFK is greatly influenced by everything Halsey’s experienced over the past three years.
“I love Badlands, my debut record, and it has a lot of really emotional, coming-of-age songs on it. I wrote them when I was 19, but I wrote it before I had ever stepped foot in a club. I couldn’t drink legally. Since then, I’ve gone out all over the world and I’ve seen the way music kind of affects culture, whether it’s in the favelas in Brazil or it’s in a club in Germany.”
“The best thing about this album to me is I can dance when the song comes on,” she continued. “So when I’m sitting in here and you guys are playing ‘Now Or Never,’ I’m like vibing in my seat and I’m dancing and it’s something I never did with any of my old music, so it’s really cool for me.”
Halsey hasn’t shared much else about the album yet, but she did reveal there will be some featured artists.
“There’s one artist we brought in in particular that I can’t say the name of, a very, very big urban rap artist. We love him so much and I think he’s brilliant, but we didn’t put him on the club song. We didn’t put him on the urban song or the hip hop song or whatever. We put him on a really emotional, big, cinematic-like, dark, weird song…I wanted to do something unique with him.”
This weekend, Halsey’s headed to the desert to watch her good friend Lady Gaga at Coachella.
“She’s my hero,” Halsey gushed. “Every time I’m about to do something and I don’t have the courage to go through with it, I think about her. And I’m like, she would do something ten times crazier than this!”
“I’m very excited to see what she comes up with [at Coachella]. I heard some secrets that obviously I’m not going to giving away…my lips are sealed,” she teased.
Halsey performed on the very same stage just one year ago.
“I got to have this massive, massive career-making performance that I was so nervous and excited about. The company, Coachella, they’re so great to me and they really believed in me from the jump and kind of like put me on and I know when the [flyer] first came out, everyone was kind of like, ‘Why is Halsey’s name so big?’ And then I tried to put on this massive, crazy show and then everyone was like, ‘Oh, that’s why Halsey’s name is so big.’”