Lil Nas X's new song is dedicated to his younger self; a young teenager, grappling with his sexuality and scared about what people would say.
"Dear 14-year-old Montero, I wrote a song with our name in it. It's about a guy I met last summer," he wrote in a letter shared on social media.
"I know we promised to never come out publicly, I know we promised never to be 'that' type of gay person, I know we promised to die with the secret, but this will open doors for many other Queer people to simply exist."
The musician, best known for his viral 2019 hit 'Old Town Road', went on to write that he was scared of the reaction the song and its video would garner.
"This is very scary for me, people will be angry, they will say I'm pushing an agenda," he said.
"But the truth is, I am. The agenda to make people stay the f*** out of other people's lives and stop dictating who they should be."
'Montero (Call Me By Your Name)' sees Lil Nas X, whose real name is Montero, sing about having a relationship with a closeted guy. In the music video, he plays various Biblical-inspired characters, including Adam and the snake in the Garden of Eden.
After being stoned to death, he dances down a pole to hell, where he meets Satan atop his throne which is surrounded by Greek words that mean: "They condemn what they do not understand".
He gives Satan a lap dance before killing him and then crowns himself with Satan's horns.
According to a press release accompanying the video, the final scene represents "dismantling the throne of judgement and punishment that has kept many of us from embracing our true selves out of fear".
Lil Nas X was correct with the letter to his younger self: people were mad. They did accuse him of pushing 'an agenda'.
Think back to mid-2020, when Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion released 'WAP', and later that same year when Harry Styles wore a dress on the cover of Vogue. 'Montero' has garnered controversy like both of those combined, with added fury because Lil Nas X dares to be an openly gay Black man.
Conservative commentators and religious figures have strongly condemned the video, screaming 'think of the children'.
Lil Nas X has since had an absolute field day on Twitter, sharing reactions, memes and trolling homophobic criticism he's received.
there was no system involved. i made the decision to create the music video. i am an adult. i am not gonna spend my entire career trying to cater to your children. that is your job. https://t.co/SzjjYe2tf4— nope 🏹 (@LilNasX) March 27, 2021