Speaking about the song during an interview with SiriusXM Radio, Halsey stated the following:
"My song Colors is about being in a relationship with someone and kind of watching the vibrancy slowly start to leak out of them, watch the colors start to fade, whether they’re falling victim to drugs or falling victim to work or any sort of negative behavior that’s kind of taking them away from the bright and lively person that they used to be,” she explained. "You can kind of see them start to fade to gray, and you wish you had them back the way that they used to be."
The song was written by Halsey and Dylan Bauld, and produced by Dylan William. In order to promote it, Halsey performed it on several television shows, including Jimmy Kimmel Live!. On April 22, 2016, she released a digital EP entitled Complementary Colors, featuring a stripped back version of the original track, as well as 4 remixes.
Release and promotion
On January 21, 2016, Halsey revealed the single's artwork via Twitter. The art had been painted on the side of a building located at the intersection of Franklin Street and Meserole Avenue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The picture features a black human silhouette standing in front of a dark green background. There are lilac paint splashes around the head of the figure, which is a reference to the song's bridge. Upon its release, MTV's contributor Madeline Roth compared the reveal to the advertising campaign preceding Justin Bieber's album Purpose.
Tim Mattia directed the music video for this song. The video was released on February 25, 2016, and co-starred actor Tyler Posey.
The video starts with Halsey's character photographing Posey and his father with her polaroid camera while they play a game of tennis. Halsey and her mother walk down from the tower and sit with the two men. Halsey's mother invites them to dinner. Posey's character spots her thumbing through pictures in her car, which she makes a visible effort to hide. Halsey and her mother meet up for dinner. While eating, Tyler's father notices Halsey has food on her face while she is staring off into the distance. She then takes a picture of the three of them.
Back at the school, Halsey is struggling to open her locker as Tyler walks towards her. She accidentally drops the pictures when he is standing next to her. While picking them up, Tyler discovers that none of them are of him, and it is revealed that Halsey's character harbored a crush on Tyler's father during the entirety of the video. He punches an adjacent locker and storms off. The video ends with Halsey taking a final picture, with the picture being entirely blue, as is the case before a Polaroid photo develops.
|Released||February 25, 2016|
|VEVO views||94+ Million views|
- This music video for this song has the highest amount of views for any of Halsey's videos. As of May 2017, the video has over 91 million views.
- "Colors" is rumored to be about Matty Healy, who is the lead singer of the British Alternative band The 1975.
- The song was certified gold by the RIAA.
- The music video for this song was partly filmed in the "Murder House" from the first season of American Horror Story.