Lorde's next album, the follow-up to 2017's Melodrama, might take longer than expected to make its way to fans. The singer-songwriter sent a candid update in a fan club newsletter on Saturday (Nov. 2) in which she revealed that she is mourning the death of her dog, Pearl.
“I’ve been working away on the new songs for most of this year in New Zealand. It’s been going pretty well, but something happened last month that I need to tell you about,” Lorde wrote in a letter that circulated among fans.
“Some of you may know about Pearl, my dog,” she continued. “Pearl came into my life in 2018, and almost immediately changed everything for me. As anyone who has had the pleasure of raising a dog can understand, my life grew exponentially. Pearl brought an immeasurable amount of joy and purpose into my world.”
Lorde explained that the quality time spent with Pearl “after years on the road” had her “at home, growing things, making food slowly, writing. I was receiving huge amounts of energy I can only describe as divine, and I was working hard to communicate it all to you by way of the album. I felt I had been given this great gift that I needed to share with you all.”
Unfortunately, she shared that Pearl had been ill, and his illness took a turn for the worse: “One day we woke up and I knew, in that way mothers do, that he was sicker than we had realised, and that we were nearing a point where his body wasn’t going to be able to cope. I rushed him to the specialists. Pearl had two cardiac arrests about an hour apart, and after the second one, he died. I was holding him when he went, and I know he knew that I was there. But this loss has been indescribably painful, and a light that was turned on for me has gone out.”
She described Pearl as a muse — “he was instrumental to the discovery that was taking place,” said Lorde, who “felt he led me towards the ideas” — and told fans she needed time to “see what the work is going to be” without him.
Although she'd said over the summer that her third album was “in the oven,” Lorde is now asking fans to remain patient.
“I have lost my boy, and I need some time to see the good again, to finish making this [album] for you,” she said. “It won’t be the same work — as anyone who has felt loss can understand, there’s a door that opens that you step through, and everything is different on the other side.”