INTERESTING BITS: Wikipedia’s Dec. 7th Featured Article on Tove Lo
“Habits (Stay High)” is a song recorded by Swedish singer Tove Lo from her debut extended play (EP), Truth Serum, and her debut studio album, Queen of the Clouds (2014). It was written by Lo with Ludvig Söderberg and Jakob Jerlström, while it was produced by the latter two under the production name The Struts. Initially, the singer self-released the song under the title “Habits” on 15 March 2013 as her second independently-released single. After Lo was signed to Universal Music, the track was re-released on 6 December 2013 under the title of “Habits (Stay High)” as both the second single from Truth Serum and the lead single from Queen of the Clouds. Musically, it is a pop and electropop song which features a minimal and upbeat electronic instrumentation. Its lyrics delve into the singer’s attempts to forget her previous boyfriend through substance abuse, drinking and other hedonistic practices. Consequently, some critics and Lo herself noted a contrast between the song’s production and its lyrical content.
“Habits (Stay High)” was well received by most critics, who commended its lyrics and production. The track became a sleeper hit; it entered the music charts in 2014, one year after its original release. The recording peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States and became the highest-charting song by a Swedish artist on that chart since “The Sign” by Ace of Base peaked at number one in 1994. It was certified five-times platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and sold over 2.6 million copies in the country. Additionally, the track topped the charts in Poland and Romania, and peaked within the top ten in Austria, Canada, France and Switzerland, among others.
Two music videos were filmed for the song, both directed by Motellet Film. The first version, released on 15 March 2013, featured the singer at a tea party while getting drunk with her guests. It reached half-a-million views on YouTube before it was made private one year after its release. The second version was filmed at a Swedish club over three days and depicts Lo in a night of partying with her friends. The singer performed the single at festivals such as South by Southwest and the Hangout Music Festival, and included it on the set list of her tours, the Queen of the Clouds Tour (2015) and the Lady Wood Tour (2017). The single was awarded the Song of the Year award at the Grammis of 2015 in Sweden. A remix by record production duo Hippie Sabotage, titled “Stay High”, was released as the third single from Truth Serum and reached the top ten in Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and other countries in Europe. The song has been covered by artists such as Vin Diesel, whose performance was a tribute to his late friend Paul Walker, and Kelly Clarkson, who performed the track on her Piece by Piece Tour (2015).