Zedd & Elley Duhé’s “Happy Now” Is A Bittersweet Club Anthem

Zedd already landed one of the biggest hits of 2018 with “The Middle,” and he is likely to recreate the feat with his new single, “Happy Now.” The club-pop hybrid went Top 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 and is all about the necessity of compromise in a relationship. However, his latest finds featured vocalist Elley Duhé picking up the pieces of her broken heart after a breakup. “You’re a world away, somewhere in the crowd. In a foreign place, are you happy now,” the rising star sings to her ex on the chorus. The rapidly delivered verses make it clear that she is not able to move on from her past just yet. “You’re the only one who can up and run. Leave me just as empty as the day you came,” she laments over a deceptively upbeat production.

“’Happy Now’ is the most organic sounding song I’ve made in a long time. The majority of what you hear was recorded using real instrumentation, a lot of pianos and a lot of guitars,” the German producer said in a press release. He also opened up about the dichotomy between the twinkling production and Elley’s emotionally fraught delivery. “Lyrically, it’s a song that is both happy and sad at the same time, while musically, it’s a song that rather leans towards a happier, sunnier side.” He added some additional insight about his latest anthem in an interview with Zane Lowe on Apple Music’s Beats 1. In particular, he explained why he wanted to work with his new muse. “I think why I really gravitated towards her was that she had a genuine and honest approach to the song and she felt vulnerable and real.”

This is both high praise and a testament to Elley’s undeniable talent. Zedd famously had a multitude of vocalists (including Camila Cabello, Bebe Rexha and Charli XCX) record demos of “The Middle” before finally deciding to work with country diva Maren Morris. “I recorded close to 12 or 13 singers of which I thought some might be perfect and of which some wanted to cut it that I didn’t think had the right voice for that song in terms of vocal range and vocal color, not that they are not good singers. I went with who I thought did the best for the song,” he told Lowe. The hitmaker is already looking toward the future. He opened up about plans for another single, which he is working on with Swede-pop mastermind, Max Martin.

It sounds like he has plenty of solid bops on the way. In the meantime, “Happy Now” should have no trouble conquering the charts. Give it a spin below!

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