Lily Allen Saves Pop Music With New Single “Hard Out Here”: Watch The Brilliant Video

She Makes It Look Easy
Just when everyone thought that there was no hope left for pop music in 2013, with generally lackluster releases from all the best divas in the game, Lily Allen comes through in a pinch to rescue all of us from abject desperation: Without any formal announcement, build-up or fanfare, the songstress has just unveiled the music video for her new single “Hard Out Here” online  — and it’s effortlessly brilliant, as sharp and dynamic as any of us could want.

Allen has always been one of the few pop stars who’s capable of solid social satire without compromising her songcraft, and “Hard Out Here” doesn’t disappoint to that end: It’s a withering takedown of body image pressures and misogyny in the entertainment industry, making its point flawlessly with just a few choice lines and images. “Hard Out Here” is self-conscious and self-deprecating but stops just short of being caustic, built around an earworm of a chorus hook with typically smart, funny lyrics in the verses. 

The video opens with Allen, in full glam-chav style (looking like Jessie J, frankly) getting liposuction, and it just gets better from there, borrowing imagery from rap videos to ingenious effect. (It’s not far off from Jewel‘s “Intuition” video, but dangerously more effective.) In particular, her take on Robin Thicke‘s “Blurred Lines” video — with balloon letters spelling out “LILY ALLEN HAS A BAGGY PUSSY” — is laugh-out-loud funny.

“Hard Out Here” is maybe her most damning song yet — and it’s all but impossible to dislike. This is how you make a comeback.

Watch up top.

Get an eyeful of even more pop music coverage, from artist interviews to exclusive performances, on Idolator’s YouTube channel.

  • mike

    I dont’ see this as saving pop music in any way. Like you mentioned this territory has already been traversed in Jewel’s Intuition and in P!nk’s Stupid Girls. Furthermore, the pop sound of the song is boring.
    It reminds me of someone thinking, “How can I make money from the twerking trend without being accused of lowering my standards? Criticize it for press!”

  • minoguer

    For it is just perfect pop. Love it!

  • Antonymous Gawker

    Nice! We needed her to help mocking Corporate Evil Crap Music. Go, Lily, we missed you!

  • Miguel

    I half-agree. So glad to see Lily back doing her thing because she’s one of my favorites, but this is nothing groundbreaking or different from anything we’ve heard in 2013. It’s a decent first single and a cute video, but she’s had better songs.

  • Justin SanDiego

    easily one of my favorite songs from 2013. Thank God she’s out of retirement!

  • Diana Lopez

    You don’t save pop music by rehashing the same sounds from the last 30 years and sing rearranged lyrics about a tired topic. Who wrote this? a 12 year old?

  • babodpower

    I think a few of you are missing the satirical point of both song and video,yes it is rehashing the sounds,(auto-cue) ,girls dancing provocatively because that’s the point she’s trying to make.It’s all getting out of hand and women are objectified.It’s called satire folks and hopefully it will at least make women(girls some of them) in the pop world reconsider what they need to do to proceed in the music industry.And anything that sends up a complete and utter slime artist like Thicke is fine by me.He’s a dirty old man who makes my skin crawl! Welcome back Lily!!!

    • Marcin Kluska

      I totally agree!!!

    • mike

      So saving pop music means to parody pop music? You’re not growing you’re just laughing at what’s already there.

      • Sarah

        i don’t think you understand what satire is, my friend.

  • Lpdite

    “Just when everyone thought that there was no hope left for pop music in 2013, with generally lackluster releases from all the best divas in the game, Lily Allen comes through in a pinch to rescue all of us from abject desperate”

    Lmao. Only easily-impressed children would find this tired brilliant and fresh.

  • Dan

    Brilliant? You’re joking! This song is sounds terrible and it enrages me that she is singing about how “hard” it is…is she not rolling around in millions of dollars? hardly hard for her is it?

  • Azarow M. HighGuy

    Two titles.
    -Va Va Voom / By Nicki Minaj (Released more than one year ago)
    -One Woman Army / By Porcelain Black (Released barely two or three monthes before Hard Out There).

    Yeah, Lilly Allen saved the world of pop-plagiarism. :D