The song begins with stripped down production and a despondent edge as Clarkson tends to a broken heart over punchy drums and an ominous bass line. But with each colossal chorus, Clarkson injects "Meaning of Life" with more soul. "Cause when you kiss me I know who I am," she sings forcefully. "And when you let me feel it I understand/ When I'm lost I just look in your eyes/ You show me the meaning of life."
"'Meaning of Life' is the song that started this entire project," Clarkson said. "The vibe, soul and message of this song was very critical to show other writers and producers of the new direction we were taking."
Along with the studio version of "Meaning of Life," Clarkson also shared a striking live performance of the track, which she recorded at the War Memorial Auditorium in Nashville as part of her ongoing "Nashville Sessions" series.
"Meaning of Life" follows Clarkson's previously released singles, "Love So Soft" and "Move You." Meaning of Life marks Clarkson's eighth studio album and first since 2015's Piece by Piece. The record finds the singer reuniting with producers like Greg Kurstin ("Stronger"), Jason Halbert and Jesse Shatkin, and working with new collaborators like Mick Schultz, the Monarch and Nick Ruth. Members of Earth Wind & Fire will also appear on the song, "Whole Lotta Woman."