Saturday Night Live - Season 43

Miley Cyrus Was in a Good "Bad Mood" on Saturday Night Live

On Saturday night's episode of Saturday Night Live, musical guest Miley Cyrus was game for sketches, poking fun at her relationship with Liam Hemsworth and appearing in an adult diaper for a rap video, but when it came time to sing, she was not playing around. She sounded stellar singing "Bad Mood" off of her latest album, Younger Now. In a black slit dress with mesh accents (was anyone else reminded of a rock 'n' roll version of Angelina Jolie's Oscars "leg dress"?) and rings that accentuated her hand and finger tattoos, Cyrus belted out the tune, an ode to a relationship too passionate to last: "I wake up in a bad mood/I wake up in a bad mood/The glass ceiling's gotta break/All together, wanna hear ya say/I don’t know how much more it can take."

Then again, the song might also be about how much of the country has felt every morning in the almost-a-year since the election. We always wake up in a bad mood. We can never fall asleep.

Cyrus's vocals are impressive and rough-edged, the closest to rocker Miley we've ever gotten. And while Cyrus is often giving out a "party on the beach" vibe, here, the effort shows (in a good way). She's trying. She did not come to play.

Cyrus does have a history of doing The Most on SNL. In the past, she's played a raunchy Michelle Bachmann trying to shut down the government in a "We Can't Stop" parody "We Did Stop" and begged for Kyle Mooney's hand in marriage.

Next week the musical guest will again be a former teen star trying on a tougher persona: Taylor Swift. Tay, watch Miley's performance and take a note. You've got your work cut out for you. The bar has been set.

Related: Miley Cyrus Says Playing Hannah Montana Did "Extreme Damage in My Psyche"