Miley Cyrus Says New Album Cost $50,000 to Make, Label Was Out of the Loop

Miley Cyrus performs onstage during the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards
John Shearer/Getty Images

Miley Cyrus performs onstage during the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on August 30, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. 

Miley Cyrus caught everyone by surprise when she dropped a new, free album right at the end of the MTV Video Music Awards broadcast. The album was also something of a surprise for her label. 

Cyrus used the heavy-traffic platform of Sunday night's VMAs to announce Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz. It’s a homemade side project, if you will, reflecting a new creative burst and created without financial support from RCA Records. Though, apparently, the set was created with the approval of her label home. 

Miley Cyrus Flashes Audience at MTV Video Music Awards 

Speaking to the New York Times a week out from Sunday’s pop extravaganza, the singer said her album cost about $50,000 to make (Bangerz was “a couple million”). She also confirmed RCA didn’t contribute to the budget for Dead Petz and it won’t count toward fulfilling her multi-album contract with the major. “They had never heard the record until it was done,” she admitted.

The Times shared a statement from the label which reads, “Miley Cyrus continues to be a groundbreaking artist. She has a strong point of view regarding her art and expressed her desire to share this body of work with her fans directly. RCA Records is pleased to support Miley’s unique musical vision.”

Miley hosted this year’s VMAs from L.A.’s Microsoft Theater. The pop artist had the last performance of the night…and the last word, which she used to push her new recording. "It's online FOR FREE right now," she declared at the closing moments as the site hosting the recording splashed on the screen for millions of viewers back home.

Miley Cyrus Drops New Free Album, Performs New Song at VMAs

In her interview with the Times, Cyrus also discussed the key roles of producers Oren Yoel and Mike WiLL Made-It and in particular the Flaming Lips Wayne Coyne, who joined Cyrus on stage at the VMAs. Cyrus and her colorful cast performed “Dooo It!,” one of 23 songs included on her new album. “What Mike was to ‘Bangerz,’ Wayne is to this project.” 

She also poured cold water on any notion that she and Coyne have a relationship that extends beyond the musical realm. “He’s everything in the world -- you can’t even define us,” Cyrus explained. “I am 100 percent in love with Wayne, and Wayne is in love with me, but it’s nothing sexual in any way. That would be the grossest.”