“Torn,” the new, ace single from Ava Max, shares a lineage with Madonna’s “Hung Up” and ABBA’s “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)” as it samples the ABBA classic, a tacit statement that Max is gunning for pop’s elite.
The disco hues extend beyond the recognizable sample, with its thumping beat and string swells culminating in a cathartic finale. Max became a global star thanks to the success of the inescapable “Sweet but Psycho,” but “Torn” is the surest signal yet she’ll be a force to be reckoned with as we barrel ever closer towards the 2020s.