Miley Cyrus Gives Her Love Ballad, "Malibu"

The chorus goes, "Here I am/next to you/the sky is more blue in Malibu". In fact, it's out right now! It still doesn't have a title, but my money's on something inspired by her relationship and recent transformation into what Billboard calls "New Miley", a Miley that is "completely clean" these days, and completely in love. It's a lot of Miley in bikini bottoms and neutrals, but hey, isn't that all the beach really is anyway? She may be one of the few people on the planet whose re-embrace of conventional softness will launch a thousand think-pieces, but this new move can best be summed up in two words: No tongue.

The sun-soaked comeback, an ode to partner-in-crime Liam Hemsworth, finds Miley in a more settled, more laidback place - Malibu, specifically - her relaxed voice casually gliding across dreamy guitars and a propulsive beat. "Do we even exist?" she sings while communing with nature. "So why not put the power back in my relationship and say, 'This is how I feel?'" Her dad credits the fashion rethink to finding happiness personally and professionally, after rekindling her romance with her actor fiance Liam Hemsworth in late 2015. "That's when I make the wish, to swim away with the fish".

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In a Billboard cover story, Miley described her next album (out later this year) as a retreading of her country roots and a return to basics.

"I needed to change so much", says the 24-year-old. "For her, this is honest". And changing with someone else not changing like that is too hard.

  • Carlos Nash