“Wrecking Ball” is a song recorded by American singer Miley Cyrus for her fourth studio album Bangerz (2013). It was released on August 25, 2013, by RCA Records as the album’s second single. The song was written by MoZella, Stephan Moccio, Sacha Skarbek, Kiyanu Kim, Lukasz Gottwald, and Henry Russell Walter; production was helmed by the last two. “Wrecking Ball” is a pop ballad which lyrically discusses the deterioration of a relationship.
“Wrecking Ball” received generally favorable reviews from music critics, who appreciated its lyrical content and overall production. It debuted on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 at number fifty, and later became Cyrus’ first number-one single in the United States after the release of its controversial music video; it retained the peak position during the following week. Nine weeks later, the track returned to number one, and consequently had the largest gap between number-one sittings in Billboard Hot 100 history. As of January 2014, “Wrecking Ball” has sold three million copies in the United States. Internationally, the song charted strongly; it topped the charts in Canada, Spain and the United Kingdom, and charted in the top ten throughout much of Europe and Oceania.
An accompanying music video for “Wrecking Ball” was released on September 9, 2013. It featured close-up scenes of Cyrus tearfully singing, reminiscent of the clip for “Nothing Compares 2 U” by Sinéad O’Connor, interspersed with footage of a nude Cyrus swinging on a wrecking ball. Critics were divided in their opinions of the music video, feeling that it was more provocative than the clip for her previous single “We Can’t Stop”. “Wrecking Ball” previously held the Vevo record for the most views in the first 24 hours after its release with 19.3 million views. At the 2013 MTV Europe Music Awards, Cyrus took home the award for Best Video and the award for Video of the Year at the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards. Adding to the video’s success, Cyrus won the award for World’s Best Video at the 2014 World Music Awards in Monte Carlo. Cyrus has performed “Wrecking Ball” during several live performances, including the iHeartRadio Music Festival and an episode of Saturday Night Live.