30 August 2015
Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz is the fifth studio album by American singer-songwriter Miley Cyrus. It was originally released independently by Smiley Miley, inc on August 30, 2015 but was later released commercially on iTunes and other streaming platforms under RCA Records on April 10, 2017.
Cyrus began planning the project in 2013 before Bangerz was released. Work continued into 2014 and 2015, when she befriended and began collaborating with The Flaming Lips. In addition to the psychedelic rock band, Cyrus worked with producers Mike Will Made It and Oren Yoel (with whom she had collaborated on Bangerz). The album features guest vocals by Big Sean (who had appeared on Bangerz), Sarah Barthel of Phantogram and Ariel Pink.
Without previous promotion, Cyrus announced that Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz was available for free online streaming when she hosted the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards, released independently.
Despite being negatively received by most of the public and critics when it was released, Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz has been gaining more recognition over time. In an article for Billboard, Tatiana Cirisiano pointed out that by releasing it for free online outside her multi-album contract with RCA Records, Cyrus made "a bold and potentially lethal move for any artist today, let alone a pop star in 2015". The project was recognized for "asserting that pop stars, too, should be afforded the freedom to experiment with one-offs - while they certainly can use the 'era' model if it serves their artistry best, not every release must connote the beginning of a heavily-promoted album cycle and matching persona".
Dead Petz has been considered as "a predecessor of today's rule-breaking, tradition-flipping pop scene, like Lana Del Rey teasing a project called Norman Fucking Rockwell! with a single that lasts nearly 10 minutes, Billie Eilish leading a generation of streetwear-clad teens with possibly the darkest pop Top 40 has ever seen, and Ariana Grande dropping two albums in six months with the swiftness and swagger of a SoundCloud rapper".
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