After releasing a trio of EPs over the past four years, Noah Cyrus has finally announced the title of her long-awaited full-length debut album, The Hardest Part. In an Instagram post on Friday morning (April 8), the singer revealed that the collection will drop on RECORDS/Columbia on July 15 while also debuting the video for the emotional ballad “I Burned LA Down.”
“I’ m so proud of this song and video. there’s nothing i love more than writing such personal, meaningful music with people i love,” Cyrus wrote in the post about the clip for the acoustic tear-jerker, which finds her donning a blood red dress and matching face mask and a flowing black gothic gown as she stands amid the flames and floating embers of a burning barn.
“You left a hole in my chest when you left/And my heart followed you out the door/ And I stood and bled in the hall, watched it all/ And the mess that it left on the floor If I gave you less, would you want me more?/ And you could’ve said anything at all,” Cyrus, 22, sings over finger-picked guitar and galloping drums on the tune about wanting to tear it all down.
“Oh, I wish I hadn’t burned this city down/ ‘Cause you didn’t care, you didn’t care/ Yeah, I burned LA down and you left me there/ Oh, you left me there,” she croons on the sad-eyed chorus of the tune that mingles broken hearts with the simmering wildfire anxiety any Californian can relate to.
“Living in California, you’re constantly living with this dread of wildfire season. At the time, I was reeling from my breakup, and Caldor [wildfire] was dominating the news,” Cyrus said in a statement. “All this internal, emotional pain I was feeling was intertwined with the anxiety around this out-of-control fire and climate change in general. The song took shape around the idea that the only way my ex could comprehend the scale of my emotions was if I became this agent of chaos and set the entire city on fire. That idea of your internal struggle manifesting itself in the real world and affecting your surroundings is a big theme of the record, and that song feels so much bigger than anything I’ve written before. It’s the perfect introduction to the album.”
Cyrus has been priming the pump for her debut full-length with a series of three EPs, which began with 2018’s Good Cry, followed by 2020’s The End of Everything and last year’s People Don’t Change. The latter was a collaboration with Australian singer PJ Harding, who gushed about working with Cyrus again on her full-length album.
“‘I Burned LA Down’ by my genius friend @noahcyrus is out everywhere now! We wrote this together from opposite ends of the pacific and I couldn’t be prouder of it,” Harding said in an Instagram post that also shouted out the song’s producer, Mike Crossey (Arctic Monkeys, The 1975). “Working with Noah on this album has been such a massive privilege. It’s an amazing body of work and I can’t wait for everyone to hear it!”
Cyrus also had high praise for both Harding and Crossey in her post, as well as the track’s drum arranger, Chris Bond, saying it was “such a dream as i’ve admired chris’ work for yeeeeeeaaaaarrrrsss.”
Watch the “I Burned LA Down” video and read Cyrus’ post below.