Katy Perry – Teenage Dream

September 20, 2010 at 4:19 PM | Posted in Katy Perry | Leave a comment

ALBUM REVIEW
Katy Perry – Teenage Dream

1. Teenage Dream
2. Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)
3. California Gurls (feat. Snoop Dogg)
4. Firework
5. Peacock
6. Circle The Drain
7. The One That Got Away
8. E.T.
9. Who Am I Living For?
10. Pearl
11. Hummingbird Heartbeat
12. Not Like The Movies

♦ ♦ ♦

Teenage Dream is the second mainstream studio album and third album overall by American singer Katy Perry, and it was released on August 24, 2010. The album debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart, with first-week sales of 192,000 copies.

I have a weak spot for second single Teenage Dream, a very very nice midtempo pop song with Katy using her head voice a lot in the verses. This song has been stated as a ballad, but to me it certainly isn’t because of its heavier use of percussion, guitars and synths and also more dominant vocals by Katy in the chorus. I love the melody in this song and her way of singing in the chorus (” You!… Make!…Me! etc.)

Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.), the first new track on the album,  has some pretty funny lyrics from the start! DJ passed out in the yard, oh my gosh. I noticed right away that Katy’s vocals have matured a lot since her album One Of The Boys (2008). The instruments in this song never get too bouncy and dominant, so this is more laid back yet very energetic. Pop with a lot of synths, it kinda suits Katy more than her previous pop/rock songs!

What the heck is Snoop Dogg doing on a song like California Gurls? Oh well, Katy just used Wikipedia with ‘West coast artists’ in the search box before selecting Snoop Dogg. She added a little funk to this song with a cute guitar playing riffs throughout the song. This song is a lot of fun, and so is the video! Cute, candy-like, and a bit of that synth spice to the music. What do you get? A very goooood single!

Firework is a lot more dance-like with very heavy bass in the percussion on each count, but also uses classical instruments, such as a lot of strings in the hook of the track. Katy belts out the high notes in the chorus pretty darn well, I must say, without singing even a bit out of key, and again she sounds a lot better than ever before. The lyrics can get a little cheesy sometimes (“Boom, boom, boom, even brighter than the moon, moon, moon“), but this is a hell of a hot song, she nailed it!

Why do I have the strange feeling Peacock isn’t about fowl at all…? (“I wanna see your peacock, cock, cock“) Regardless…. what a synth heavy song this is, but it’s pretty fun when everything’s blended together. Nothing special, the melody isn’t hard to follow at all, and it can get a little repetitive after a while, but again, because of the ‘wtf’ lyrics and the nice synth arrangements, this song is pretty funny!

Katy gives electropop a rocky tune with Circle The Drain, another synth heavy song with a lot of dominant electric guitar riffs. Her vocals are altered sometimes, and echoes are added a lot, varying from higher to lower when altered. The chorus is repeated over and over again, so this makes a nice song a little less good, just like Peacock.

I wonder when a ballad will finally drop in, but I get another uptempo track with The One That Got Away. At least, it’s uptempo but not all over the place. No synths this time but regular pop instruments like a cute piano melody and pumping percussion. The lyrics are very pretty, especially when she sings about talking about the future with someone who was probably her boyfriend. I like this track a LOT better than Circle The Drain, especially since the melody is more likeable.

We’re going futuristic with E.T., just like the title already says. I really love the beat in this song, it gives it just a hince of dubstep with the handclaps between all those synths. Katy’s vocals are very deep this time, especially in the chorus, the part I like the most (with it’s catchy lyrics!). She uses her head voice again in the bridge, and I already noticed many times that that doesn’t sound bad at all, either! Never expected I liked this song so much.

What Am I Living For? opens with some random but yet very nice adlibbing by Katy, and again she mixes synthpop/electropop with a kind of R&B beat, which make such a nice song together, just like E.T. already proved. In the chorus, Katy sounds so matured I didn’t even recognize her voice at first, but what the heck is this? Finally I get a ballad track of some sort, but she displays such great vocals on wonderful music! Love the strings part at the end of the song as well =D

Pearl uses a heck of a weird drum pattern in the chorus, it’s way too soft to actually be a Katy Perry song for this album and too hard to be a ballad. I don’t like third person sung lyrics about a certain ‘she’ or ‘her’, so the lyrics aren’t a good point as well. The rest of the music is at least a bit good, and thank god the beat’s a little more dominant during the last chorus. No, this song actually does nothing for me…

Do I hear more rock elements involved in Hummingbird Heartbeat? Yes, finally some variation! This song is so filled with the energy of the percussion mixed with the electric guitars it almost sounds kinda brassy in the verses. Katy almost goes back to the roots of her first mainstream album with this track, and the lyrics are very cute as well. All I miss is an electric guitar solo…

Right at the finish line a beautiful heartfelt ballad with just a piano for the majority and later just a bit of percussion and strings (and wow, even a choir of Katy’s own vocals). Not Like The Movies has been talked about a lot before the album was released, so I was pretty curious about this track. Couldn’t have known that it would be the best track on this album! Katy perry florishes well in heartfelt ballads, as she shows here. I’m in love with the song…

All I can say is that Katy Perry has grown a lot since the time she kissed girls and insulted ex-boyfriends by saying they’re gay and stuff… She’s actually a great performer, combining pop with electro, elements of rock and even fits in a ballad without getting an all stereotyped synthpop singer. Though this is actually a summer record, some songs can played very well any time of year. Not Like The Movies is more like an autumn song if you ask me, but that’s just my crazy way of thinking.
Although some songs may sound a bit alike, each track is unique in its own ways and I was hardly bored by this album. Firework is said to be the third single, and that was a very good track, so Katy is full speed ahead with her career!

Favorite tracks: Teenage Dream | California Gurls (feat. Snoop Dogg) | Firework | E.T. | What Am I Living For? | Not Like The Movies

OVERALL RATING

4 stars

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