The single arrives ahead of The Idol Vol. 1 soundtrack, which is now available for pre-order here, as well as the Sam Levinson-directed HBO series, which is set to premiere this Sunday, June 4. “Popular” joins the soundtrack’s Future-assisted lead single “Double Fantasy,” which Tesfaye first performed during Metro Boomin‘s Coachella set before officially releasing it on April 21. The song peaked at No. 18 on the Billboard Hot 100.
In the month leading up to the release of “Popular,” Tesfaye posted a photo of Madonna on his Instagram account with a burning heart emoji. Then he properly teased the song while walking alongside his Idol castmates — including Lily-Rose Depp, BLACKPINK‘s Jennie, Troye Sivan, Moses Sumney and more — on the red carpet at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival, where the controversy-stirring series received a five-minute standing ovation. Tesfaye then confirmed fan theories that he and Carti had collaborated by posting a screenshot of their FaceTime call on Twitter.
“Popular” marks the first time Tesfaye has worked with Madonna and Carti, and it also marks both Madonna and Carti’s first musical releases of 2023. And while his headline-making TV series will officially premiere this weekend, he is also embarking on the second, European and Latin American leg of his After Hours Til Dawn Tour, which officially starts next Tuesday, June 6 in Lisbon, Portugal.
Listen to “Popular” below.