Demi Lovato’s latest release comes with a warning — for a good reason.
Overnight, the singer dropped a powerful and raw music video for her single “Dancing with the Devil,” and in it, she revisits a painful part of her past.
A message at the top of the five-minute clip warns: “This video contains content depicting addiction, drug use, trauma and sexual abuse which may be triggering for some.”
It’s a warning to be taken seriously before pressing play, because what follows in the video is a graphic glimpse into the 2018 overdose Lovato suffered, from relapse to resuscitation and the difficulties she faced throughout it all.
The scene opens with the 28-year-old in a hospital bed, singing about the slippery slope that led her away from six years of sobriety. “A little red wine, I'll be fine,” she sings as the clip flashes back to her in a bar knocking back stronger and stronger drinks.
In the chorus, she belts out, “I was dancing with the devil, out of control / Almost made it to heaven / It was closer than you know.”
"I don't think people realize how bad it actually was," she said in the film. "I had three strokes. I had a heart attack. I suffered brain damage from the strokes. I can't drive anymore, and I have blind spots in my vision. I also had pneumonia and multiple organ failure."
Doctors told her she had “five to 10 minutes and had my assistant not come in, I wouldn't be here today."
The video captures that harrowing spirit as Lovato, styled to look the way she did at the time of the event, is found unconscious in a bed and paramedics scramble to keep her alive. In the hospital scenes, she’s seen getting oxygen, IV medications and blood transfusions, before getting stronger and eventually leaving.
But as she exits the hospital in the same clothes she’s shown wearing in the various scenes of drinking and drug abuse, Lovato seems to acknowledge the fragile nature of surviving an overdose and avoiding future relapse. The camera pans up to show a mirror ball that was in the bar earlier.
In an interview with Ellen DeGeneres last year, Lovato said that she’s been so open about her experience in an attempt to help others going through similar battles with addiction.
"If you do go through this, you yourself can get through it," she said. “You can get to the other side and it may be bumpy, but you are a 10 out of 10. Don’t forget it. And, as long as you take the responsibility, you can move past it and learn to love yourself that way that you deserve to be loved."