Halsey has opened up about misogyny in the music industry in an emotive new interview.
Speaking to Rolling Stone about her track ‘Nightmare’, Halsey said the song was about the continuing misogynistic treatment of women and her own experiences of such treatment.
Halsey explained: “I was coming off the cusp of ‘Without Me’. It was a very honest moment reflecting the immediate events in my life. And through the process of having the world have an opinion [on] your recovery from emotional trauma, you’re reminded a lot about misogyny. How often women are demonised: their anger is unjustified, their rage is unwelcome, their betrayal likely self-inflicted in some way.”
She continued: “I wrote this song based on my experience as a ‘famous’ person, being on red carpets and having people say, ‘Why don’t you smile?’ Or me posting photos of myself in a bathing suit and having people be like, ‘I thought she was sad about her breakup. Why is she out here acting like a slut?’
“It dawned on me that this experience is not unique to me as a woman in the public eye. This is something I’ve experienced my entire life. I wrote ‘Nightmare’ with the intention of giving women a song they could yell to about it and vent their frustration.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Halsey gave an update about her third album, revealing that she was now close to completion. Halsey explained: “I’m finishing it up right now. It’s a lot different than I thought it was going to be, that’s for sure. I think people heard ‘Nightmare’ and they’re like, ‘OK, Halsey’s pissed, and she’s going to be making more angry music.’ It was almost like I got it off my chest, and I didn’t need to make as angry music.
“I think I have this expectation of myself that all of my music needs to be like dark and cinematic and angry and aggressive. I was cast into this badass role, which can be exhausting sometimes. Sometimes I find myself in the studio, and I’ll have a song that’s really sweet, and I’ll be like, ‘I can’t put that out. People want to hear me sing with my middle finger in the air.’ I think I’m expressing my angst in a different way. This album is highly conversational.”
Reviewing her live show in London earlier this year, NME wrote: “Tonight has everything. Halsey leaves everything onstage in a soul-baring performance, and the room responds in kind. The crowd empties their lungs, believing in every word with thunderous pride – but also standing whisper-quiet as Halsey encourages acceptance and safe spaces during a speech that highlights the very real dangers faced by the LGBTQ community.
“She asks the crowd to make a promise to stay together and refuse fear.”