It’s been four years since Lily Allen has released an album, but the British songstress is back with a vengeance with the release of her new single, “Hard Out Here,” and its accompanying video.
Capitalizing on her trademark wit, the song hits out at how hard it is to be a woman in the current musical landscape, while the saucy video drives the message home with visual callbacks to Miley Cyrus‘ appropriation of “ratchet” culture and Robin Thicke‘s endlessly controversial and misogynistic music video for “Blurred Lines.” (The silver mylar balloon message, a direct reference to Thicke’s video, is one of the video’s biggest LOL moments.)
But Allen doesn’t stop there. She also takes the entire business side of music, and music videos, to task, mocking the gratuitous product placement that’s overtaken the art form, while lampooning the idea of the overaged male manager directing every aspect of a female artist’s “ownership” of her sexuality.
It’s a blistering takedown of her industry — a giant middle finger in the air — and it’s perfect.
Check out Allen’s (slightly-NSFW) video above and let us know what you think.