“Royals” is a song by New Zealand singer Lorde from her debut extended play album, The Love Club EP (2012). It was later included on her debut studio album, Pure Heroine (2013). “Royals” was characterised as art pop and electropop. Written by Lorde and Joel Little and produced by the latter, the song lyrically disapproves of the luxurious lifestyle of contemporary artists.
“Royals” was released on 3 June 2013 as Lorde’s debut single. The song received acclaim from music critics, who praised its minimal production and lyrics. It experienced international commercial success, peaking atop the record charts of many countries including Canada, Ireland, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. In the United States, the single spent nine weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100. In doing so, Lorde became the first New Zealand solo act to top the Hot 100, as well as the youngest artist to achieve a number-one single since 1987. As of November 2014, the single has sold 10 million copies worldwide.
Lorde performed “Royals” on numerous television shows, including Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Ellen DeGeneres Show and the 2013 New Zealand Music Awards. Two music videos for “Royals” were directed by Joel Kefali: an international version and a US version. The song was listed as one of the best songs of 2013 by publications including Rolling Stone, Time and Spin. “Royals” also won numerous awards, including the Grammy Award for Song of the Year, Best Pop Solo Performance and the APRA Silver Scroll Award. A live mashup with Disclosure and AlunaGeorge’s song “White Noise” at the 2014 BRIT Awards was released as a charity single in 2014. In the media, it is regarded to be an anthem for the “Millennial” generation.