In early 2023, Dua Lipa confirmed her upcoming third studio album, slated for release in 2024, would feature a fresh sound characterized by a departure from disco and a greater embrace of 1970s-era psychedelia.
On October 12, 2023, Lipa deleted all her Instagram posts, only to resurface with a photo of herself sporting red hair with the caption “miss me?” Two weeks later, on October 27, she posted a close-up image of a key between her teeth alongside the phrase “catch me or I go.”
On October 31, 2023, Lipa shared a teaser of the song, dropping hints about the song’s title. Fans later discovered that a rearranged combination of numbers revealed the title “Houdini,” paying homage to the illusionist who passed away on October 31, 1926.
Additionally, Lipa’s fans drew parallels to a song of the same title (1982) by British singer Kate Bush, whose album cover also featured a key in her mouth, referencing Houdini.