“Honey” by Halsey

For whatever reason, many people seem to have interpreted Halsey’s “Honey” as what is commonly referred to as a gay anthem. And even though we know that Halsey is a LGBT champion of sorts, based on an analysis of the lyrics, she doesn’t seem to be speaking of anything sexual, romantic or of that nature at all really. 

In other words, yes, the addressee is a female, and there are various allusions to the two of them having some close physical interactions, internal even. But such statements are exactly that, allusions. They are poetic language which actually points to another concept(s).

The Theory

And this is a theory that has been buttressed by Halsey herself when describing the statement “all I can taste is the blood in my mouth”, perhaps the most ear-catching line of the chorus, if not the entire song. 

And the concept that term is actually based on is one akin to, most simply put, Halsey presenting herself as a dangerous woman. This is in fact an idea we find recurring throughout her album “If I Can’t Have Love, I Want Power” – that of a young lady who has been thoroughly hardened, and may we even say emotionally weaponized due to past experiences, the present coldness of the world, etc. 

However, this is not to imply that she is dangerous in a physical sense. Rather it’s like the vocalist knows herself, knows what she wants and isn’t afraid to go out and get it.

The Addressee of “Honey”

So concerning the addressee, most simply explained she would one of the personas of the vocalist herself – Halsey’s dark side, if you will. And it may seem strange that she is likening the ‘taste of blood in her mouth’ to “honey”, with the latter being exponentially sweeter. 

But conclusively, the point seemingly being made is this. Yes, the vocalist is able to understand that the addressee, this entity so to speak, who is invading her body is a representation of her own dark side. But at the same time she opts to embrace this side of her persona, despite it going against her established character, since doing so empowers her.

Lyrics to Halsey's "Honey"

Facts about “Honey”

According to the story of the creation of this song as relayed by Halsey, it was written primarily by her and John Cunningham. The pair penned the song in the singer’s own personal studio behind her house. 

At attendance was one of her little brothers, Dante, who is concurrently 16 years old. And basically she and John took “a really rough beat”, promptly whipped up a song and dropped some vocals over it, just to introduce young Dante to the song-making process. 

But then Halsey concluded that the piece “was actually good”. So what was intended to be a throwaway rather ended up making the playlist of her “If I Can’t Have Love, I Want Power” project. The project in question is the songstress’s fourth studio album.

Halsey discusses the creation of "Honey"

The other authors of this song are the Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. Both Ross and Reznor are also individually credited as the track’s producers.

Another musician who traces his origins back to the 20th century, Dave Grohl of Nirvana fame, also participated on this piece. He actually served as the track’s drummer.

Capitol Records officially released “Honey” on 27 August 2021 – a song which Halsey is said to have first teased earlier that month.

Honey

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