Photo: Scott Dudelson (Getty Images)

It’s been a weird year for c, the name currently being used by indie-pop mastermind Grimes. (Case in point: She changed her name to the scientific shorthand for the speed of light.) Rather than her music, much of the media scrutiny pointed at the artist over the last 12 months has been on her love life, and her connection to Elon Musk, the unwanted answer to the hypothetical question, “What if Tony Stark was real, and he also kind of sucked?” Along the way she’s suffered personal betrayals, tabloid press, and the after-effects of coming into close contact with one-woman internet firestorm Azealia Banks, seemingly leaving discussions about her art to be buried under a steady stream of unwanted tweets. But also, maybe, she’s not feeling so hot on the art itself.

“The last album was a piece of crap.” That’s c in a new interview with Cultured this week, referring to 2015's widely beloved Art Angels. Critics fell in love with the album’s synthesis of ecstatic pop melodies with the same introspective darkness that’s always marked the Grimes canon—our own review highlighted its ability to move from devastation to ass-shaking grooves at a moment’s notice—but the auteur-ish singer/songwriter/producer now says “It feels like a stain on my life.” She resents, specifically, the assertion that she tried to make a “pop album,” noting that “I feel like people really misread” her work.

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Presumably she won’t make the same overly accessible mistake on her next effort, the apocalypse-themed Miss Anthropocene, in which she’s said she intends to embody a sort of environmental demon who’s in love with “how great fucking climate change is.” It’s provocative stuff, especially when mixed in about comments on her no-names-mentioned relationships—stating that one of her songs is based on “Specifically how when a dude comes inside you, you become in their thrall, how it’s an attack on your feminist freedom”—along with absolutely normal things like playing League Of Legends with her friends. The album itself is apparently the salvaged product of at least three earlier projects that were tossed out by the noted perfectionist—which is also, as it happens, how Art Angels came to be. Miss Anthropocene is expected to come out some time this year; hopefully c won’t be dubbing the whole thing yet another “piece of crap” in 2023.