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Lorde’s New Single “Green Light” Is Based on Her “First Major Heartbreak”

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - JANUARY 29: Lorde performs at Silo Park on January 29, 2014 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)

Lorde’s brand-new single “Green Light” finds her confronting a former romantic partner: “I know about what you did and I want to scream the truth / She thinks you love the beach, you’re such a damn liar.” In an interview with Zane Lowe on Beats 1 today, Lorde pointed to that line to explain the meaning behind the song:

The song is actually about a heartbreak. And it’s not something that I really am used to writing about. It took me a while to be able to figure out how to write about that. It was my first major heartbreak. And the song is really about those moments kind of immediately after your life changes and about all the silly little things that you gravitate towards. I say, “She thinks you love the beach, you’re such a liar.” What the fuck, she thinks you like the beach?! You don’t like the beach! It’s those little stupid things.

The narrator of the song, Lorde explains, “is that drunk girl at the party dancing around crying about her ex-boyfriend who everyone thinks is a mess. That’s her tonight and tomorrow she starts to rebuild.”

Lorde herself dated photographer James Lowe for three years. We’ll probably never know exactly what went down during her “first major heartbreak,” but in January 2016, sharp-eyed Instagram followers noticed that she and Lowe hadn’t shared any pictures of one another in a while. (You won’t find any photos of Lowe on Lorde’s ‘gram now, either, though there are some old paparazzi shots of them at the beach together.)

The singer also offered an entertaining description of her “Green Light” co-producer, pop hitmaker Frank Dukes:

Then the wonderful boy wonder Frank Dukes came in and gave us the little drum break. He’s a tiny little boy wonder, always in his little hats and stuff.

Listen to Zane Lowe’s full segment with Lorde below.