Rihanna has released the official music video for her new single Lift Me Up.
The 34-year-old Barbadian singer made her triumphant return to the music scene on Friday with the release of the track, which was recorded for the upcoming film Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
She last released solo music in 2016 with her eighth studio album Anti.
The moving video shows shots of the singer on a beach, with crashing waves in the background, intercut with footage from the film, which is due out November 11.
Rihanna sings as the sun goes down and the ashes of a nearby bonfire float through the air.
Clips from the film include shots of Queen Ramonda, played by Angela Bassett, Letitia Wright as Shuri, dressed in tribal regalia, and a tearful Danai Gurira, who plays the fierce warrior Okoye.
Announcing the release of the video on social media, Rihanna shared a short clip with the caption “Wakanda ForeveRRRR!!!”.
Lift Me Up offers a stripped-down melody, with delicate strings that underestimate the singer’s soulful voice.
“Lift me up, hold me down, keep me close, safe and sound,” she sings.
“Hold me when you go to sleep, keep me in the warmth of your love when you go, keep me safe and sound.”
The song swells with melancholy and the singer is accompanied by a subtle chorus.
Lift Me Up – From Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, was released with an accompanying instrumental track.
The film’s director, Ryan Coogler, previously told the PA news agency that Rihanna had been “very clear” that her commitment to the project had been in honor of its late star Chadwick Boseman.
“Honestly, I think it was Chad,” the 36-year-old told PA, speaking on the red carpet at the film’s world premiere in Los Angeles.
“A lot of unlikely things had to happen for this to happen and Rihanna was very clear that she did it for him.”
Rihanna, real name Robyn Rihanna Fenty, moved to the United States in 2005 to pursue a career in music.
She signed with Jay-Z’s Def Jam Recordings and released her debut album, Music Of The Sun the same year.
The single reached number two on the UK charts, while the album sold over two million copies worldwide.
To date, she has released seven more studio albums; A Girl Like Me (2006), Good Girl Gone Bad (2007), Rated R (2009), Loud (2010), Talk That Talk (2011), Unapologetic (2012) and Anti (2016).
Her pop superstar status was cemented with the release of her third album, Good Girl Gone Bad, which reached number one on the UK charts thanks to the singles Don’t Stop The Music, Shut Up And Drive and Umbrella.
Rated R, the first album released after her contentious relationship with Chris Brown, marked a musical departure for the singer, moving away from her previous pop-heavy endeavors, and featured singles Rude Boy and Te Amo.
Last month, the singer, who welcomed her first child with rapper boyfriend ASAP Rocky earlier this year, also said she would be performing at the upcoming Super Bowl halftime show.
The performance will be the star’s first major live performance in many years.
Speaking to US outlet TMZ shortly after news of the performance broke, Rihanna reportedly said, “I’m nervous, but I’m excited.”
In the years since the release of Grammy-nominated Anti, the singer has focused on her philanthropic endeavors, acting roles and businesses, which include makeup and skincare brand Fenty. Beauty as well as her lingerie line, Savage X Fenty.
In 2019, Rihanna declined to perform at the 2019 Super Bowl halftime show in solidarity with former American footballer Colin Kaepernick.