Bella Poarch has announced her debut EP ‘Dolls’ and shared the title track from it, alongside a star-studded video that features cameos from Grimes, Madison Beer, Euphoria’s Chloe Cherry and more. Check it out below alongside the rising star telling us about fighting Grimes in the video and the “strong messages” contained in the upcoming record.
Poarch, who is the third most-followed person on TikTok, launched her music career last year with the debut single ‘Build A Bitch’ – which has since been certified platinum. ‘Dolls’ was inspired by that track, she told NME, but was given a “more upbeat” sound “with a chaotic vibe”. “It’s about taking back power and the satisfaction of being able to fight back,” she explained.
“Baby, dolls kill / Don’t provoke us or we will / Push you downhill,” she sings on the infectious new track. “Might be pretty but we’re still / Bitter as much as we’re sweet / Knife hidden under the sheets.”
The video for ‘Dolls’ follows on from the storyline Poarch began on ‘Build A Bitch’, which saw her being pieced together on a conveyor belt in a grimy factory before going rogue and smashing up the machinery that created her. Now free in ‘Dolls’, she faces the aftermath of her actions as pink jumpsuit-clad soldiers and a shadowy figure trying to stop her and her fellow escapees from wreaking more havoc.
“After shooting ‘Build A Bitch’, I knew I wanted to create a sequel,” she said. “Filming both music videos were like shooting movies so I am thankful that my fans loved the first one. The ‘Dolls’ music video continues the journey of finding the person in charge of the factories and, in that journey, I meet new friends along the way.”
A prominent scene in the video sees Grimes, complete with glowing red eyes, take on Poarch in battle. When the fight is over, though, the light in the pop iconoclast’s eyes goes out. “That’s her moment of realisation,” Poarch said. “Realisation of what she’s truly been a part of. Realisation that she has been controlled, taken advantage of and fighting on the wrong side of the battle all along. The deeper meaning is that we don’t always have to win the fight.”
She added: “It was fun and kind of scary [shooting those scenes], to be honest. Grimes and I had to go through fight training and it’s one of the coolest things I’ve done in a while.”
Filming the video might have felt like a movie to Poarch, and viewers will also find cinematic magic to it too. While coming up with the vision for it, the 25-year-old pop star took inspiration from some of her childhood favourites to help give it that feel. “I grew up watching a lot of anime and Tim Burton films,” she explained. “I love mixing the dark aesthetic with the cute pastels. I’m also a huge fan of [the Zack Snyder psychological fantasy film] Sucker Punch, so I named the robot arm [I have in the video] ‘sucker punch’.”
‘Dolls’ is the first taste of Poarch’s wider EP – her first, more fleshed-out offering to her fans. The record will arrive on August 12 via Warner Records and will contain “strong messages”, according to the star. “I want people to feel empowered and confident when they hear my EP,” she said. “It holds strong messages while sounding fun, dark and sweet. Each song has its own unique way of saying, ‘I’m a bad bitch, so don’t mess with me’.”
With ‘Build A Bitch’ having been released just over a year ago, the relative newcomer also reflected on her journey so far. “I’m still learning new things every day and I think the biggest thing I learned about myself is that I’m a perfectionist,” she shared. “I’m very particular in what I want as an artist and I will never rush to get things done.”
Poarch also shared how she wants the world to see her as an artist, describing herself as someone who “takes risks and is capable of adapting and changing”. “I’m a mixture of quiet and humble, but I also could be loud and unrestricted,” she said. “Through my music, I’m able to incorporate so many things I love, like anime and my favourite movies, but music lets me express my feelings and opinions about a lot of things I’m not able to say.”