Photo: Birte Fritsch

Tove Lo Faces Eating Disorder In ‘Grapefruit’ Video: Look + Listen

It took a decade and a specific a triggering experience for Tove Lo to to sing about her previous struggle with an eating disorder.

Preempting the Friday (10.14) release of her Dirt Femme full length, the Swedish pop star released her “Grapefruit” single and video, that reflects the feeling of entrapment she faced as a youth.

About the song, Lo stated “I finally got to a place of loving my body. When I got on stage, I’d wear little clothes and flash. To me, it felt like a victory every time I felt good about myself.” “I did this movie in Sweden, and they asked me to lose eight pounds in two weeks. They gave me a strict diet, and it was fine. Out of nowhere, these memories popped into my head.” “I hadn’t thought of these experiences in so long. I was back where I never wanted to be again, but I needed to put it on paper right then. I was ready for it.”

The superstar musician (born Ebba Tove Elsa Nilsson) said that she’s shied away from addressing her body image issues for some time, but suggested that perhaps the “two years of stillness” during the pandemic brought back those memories, saying:

“I guess I had to find the right way to share the feelings and the vicious circle of behavior I was stuck in. I’ve been free from my eating disorder and my body issues for a very long time but they did take up too many of my teenage years.” “Maybe I needed all this time I’ve been free from it to be able to look back without feeling pain.”

The Lisette Donkersloot-directed video included images of the artist “counting calories” in her kitchen and flashes with metaphoric visuals of Tove feeling trapped inside “the skin room” that reflect how she felt the need “to crawl out of my own skin” inside “a body I hated.” 

Addressing her film, Donkersloot said she was inspired by Tove Lo’s vivid description of the emotions she shared when talking about facing the eating disorder, and said “[I wanted to] literally crawl inside her mind. That’s how I came up with the Inner room of self-destruction as I like to call it,” she said in a statement. “This skin room — a magnified and unrealistic reflection of her own body — in which ‘Inner Tove’ is controlled by her outer self where not only she, but the actual room gets physically hurt, bruised and scratched by the impacts of her movements, ultimately her thoughts.”

“Grapefruit” follows previously released Lo singles “2 Die 4,” “No One Dies From Love,” and “True Romance” and the singer recently announced her North American tour in support of Dirt Femme.

About her new LP, Tove Lo told Rolling Stone  “I’ve looked back on how my femininity has helped and hurt me throughout my life.” “And I think the album has that tone to it. I’m bringing up all these questions and feelings and emotions that don’t necessarily have answers to them. It’s just more my current place of wonder.”

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Author: Saul Goode

Photo: Birte Fritsch