Kevin Mazur/WireImage
June 09, 2016 09:30 AM

Nick Jonas gets real about his love life on his new album – and he’s hoping it sets the record straight.

“By writing the songs, I’m hopeful it answers some of the questions that I get asked that might be a little monotonous,” the 23-year-old singer laughingly tells PEOPLE of his new album, Last Year Was Complicated.

“Taking ownership of these things is nice as an artist, and I am able to speak about it in a really open way – that I probably wouldn’t be able to in an interview setting,” he also says. “I want to continue writing music that speaks to people, and it just happens to be about my life.”

Specifically, Jonas’ romantic life – he was linked to both Kate Hudson and Lily Collins after splitting from Olivia Culpo last year – takes center stage in most of his new songs.

“It’s a great opportunity to just lay it out,” he says. “I was trying to be as honest as possible – it really is pulling from this chapter of my life.”

For more on Nick Jonas, his new album and his Future Now tour with Demi Lovato, pick up the new issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.

Muhammad Ali on the cover of PEOPLE

The sex symbol says he had a notably cathartic experience recording his latest single, “Chainsaw.”

“I wrote a lot of this record up in Mammoth, California, where I spent a lot of time with my ex,” Jonas says.

“We had some beautiful memories there, so when I went back to the house after our time together was done, I relived some of it, and it felt like I wanted to destroy the house to find a way to be okay. Thankfully I didn’t – I don’t think homeowners’ insurance would have covered it. So I wrote the song instead.”

He also said working on the album “was a good way to work through” his breakup.

WATCH: The Top Five Reasons Why We Love Nick Jonas!

While Jonas tweeted on May 27 that he’s “very single,” when he does get into another relationship there’s one person he’ll turn to for her stamp of approval: longtime friend Demi Lovato.

“Demi doesn’t hold back her opinion much, which I love! But I don’t know if I would have to ask. I kind of already know if she’s into it or not,” says Jonas, who will embark on their joint Future Now tour in Atlanta on June 29.

Last Year Was Complicated drops Friday. For a complete list of Jonas and Lovato’s Future Now tour dates, click here.

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