Atlantic Records

Ava Max Breaks Down 'Kings & Queens,' Her Empowering Call To Arms

'If queens ruled, the whole world would be a better place,' she said to MTV News

If you're still looking to fill the Game of Thrones-sized hole in your heart, perhaps Ava Max's latest release can help.

On Thursday (March 12), the pop singer reemerged with "Kings & Queens," her first solo song of 2020 and the official lead single for her upcoming debut album. She'd been teasing the track with a slew of royalty-related pics on Instagram, and it does, in fact, find Ava assuming her throne as a reigning defender of female empowerment. "If all of the kings had their queens on the throne / We would pop champagne and raise a toast," she begins on the opening hook. "To all of the queens who are fighting alone / Baby you're not dancing on your own."

Speaking to MTV News about the fresh single, Ava said, "It's really just about, if queens ruled the world, the whole world would be a better place."

Over driving production courtesy of Cirkut and RedOne — and one hell of an electric guitar solo — Ava sings vividly about breathing fire, getting a "royalty high," and calling on men to start championing the queens (or "kingmakers") in their lives. Otherwise, it's off with their heads.

The charged-up anthem arrives alongside evocative cover art featuring Ava perched on a throne against a cloudy backdrop. She's holding a metal sword between her legs, recalling the song's memorable lyric, "You might think I'm weak without a sword / But if I had one it'd be bigger than yours" — which, yes, is about exactly what you think it's about. "I'll leave you to fill in the blank," she laughed, adding that the sword from the cover is 100 percent real "and it was so freaking heavy."

Expect that cover art to come to life in the track's forthcoming video, which the singer describes as "very colorful, super fun, crazy dancing, and a big celebration, really. Imagine a rainbow being in a music video."

Though Ava steadily released new music throughout all of 2019 — like "So Am I," "Torn," "Freaking Me Out," "Blood, Sweat & Tears," and "Salt" — her new track is the official first taste of her debut album, due out this year. She confirmed that her 2018 breakout hit "Sweet But Psycho" is the only previously released cut that made the tracklist, saying, "Except for that, they're all new songs. I'm just so stoked for fans to hear like, thirteen new songs."

As for what the hotly anticipated project holds, expect more celebratory and buoyant anthems in the vein of "Kings & Queens."

"It's such a celebration track that starts the album with a bang. It really resembles the time and feels like a good introduction," Ava said. "I want people to hear the album when they're going to the gym and feel motivated, or when they're maybe wanting to get hired for a certain job and they want to be feel empowered. I think that's really what the feel of the album is."

While we await the full project's arrival, listen to "Kings & Queens" above to soak up that confidence-boosting energy.