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Music In Review: Katy Perry - Teenage Dream
Written by Melissa Garcia   
Sunday, 29 August 2010 05:43

Teenage Dream is the name of Katy Perry's new album that landed on shelves August 24. It is also the name of her new hit single that is taking the radio waves by storm. I love this album. There is even a Kaskade remix of "Teenage Dream," and Passion Pit's remix of "California Girls," need I say more? It's a fun, flirty, party friendly album with underlining themes that illustrate drug abuse, battles with the evils that come with fame, and the risks we take when finding true love. Katy Perry commented that this album has her most honest material, because she’s not afraid of baring her soul, and worrying about it launching her into stardom. With two platinum singles on her 2008 album, One of the Boys ("I Kissed A Girl," and "Hot n' Cold") she has proved to everyone that she's not going anywhere. This album supports her rise to the top as songs like "Teenage Dream," and "California Girls" are gaining her airtime and fans. But that’s just a small taste of the huge hits that are sure to emerge from this album. The sweetest thing about the album is the fact that it even smells good! Well, more specifically, like cotton candy. If the album cover of her nude and wrapped up in a cotton candy cloud didn't make you drool, the smell sure will.

If you haven't heard "Teenage Dream" on the radio yet you've probably been living under a rock, and if you haven't heard "Teenage Dream (Kaskade Club Mix)" you need to buy the album... immediately. If the original version wasn't enough to catch your ear's attention, this dance mix will be the driving force behind your sudden urge to learn how to shuffle. It's a classic house mix that incorporates more than cliché' pop beats, and adds a little more spunk and funk for you dance freaks.

As for the Passion Pit remix of "California Girls Ft. Snoop Dogg," it's not so funky, or spunky. The beat is a slower and delayed kind of trance mix. They tweak the vocals which make for an interesting sound, imagine Katy with a voice that dips into a raspy and deep tone while still staying true to the voice that is Katy Perry. It's not the kind of dance remix that I was hoping for, but it does catch my attention because it is completely contrasts the original. Opposite of the uppity California anthem that’s on every radio station, its dark and mellow keeping the instrumentals almost obsolete when Snoop's verse plays. Not so sure if the beat matches the vibe of the lyrics, but I'm glad Katy decided to put it on her album, it shows her drive for experimenting with her music, and it's refreshing.

"I smell like a mini bar, DJ's passed out in the yard, Barbie’s on the barbeque, is that a hickey or a bruise?" How many times has either of these things happened to you? Well, if you've had drunken nights filled with blacked out mysteries this song will definitely give you a giggle, or an odd sense of remembrance of last Friday night. "Last Friday Night (TGIF)" is the song that is relatable by anyone who has had a crazy party night. Skinny dipping, streaking, waking up with a pounding in your head, and hey, did I make-out with you last night? Yup, it must have been a good night, even though you can't remember it. But don't worry, the pictures are online. This song is the anthem for drunken party girls all around the world.

One of my favorite songs with a potent meaning behind it is "Who Am I Living For?" If you are well versed with the bio of Katy Perry, you would know about her Pastor for a father and her strong up bringing in church. Her first album ever created was a gospel album, you wouldn't know it by her first hit single, "I Kissed A Girl," but before her rise to the top she was a sweet church going girl. She sings of the pressures of fame, and constantly battling between staying true to her faith, and falling down in the perils of a celebrity lifestyle. "I can see the heavens, but I can still hear the flames calling my name... so I pray for a favor like Esther I need your strength to handle the pressure... I can't ignore this war, in the end, who am I living for?"  This track shows an honest insight into a fight that is endless and unyielding in every sense. The theme of the song is universal, but at the same time it's very personal. I like this side of Katy and the fact that she is willing to let it be known that even with all her fame, fortune and strong upbringing, she is still very vulnerable, and susceptible to the pressures of the music business.

There's nothing tougher than seeing a friend, lover or family member deal with a drug addiction. In "Circle The Drain," Katy makes hasty remarks about a lover who "falls asleep during foreplay, because pills are more of his forte.” Ouch, that has to hurt Travis McCoy. After all, he has blogged about stints in rehab and being addicted to pharmaceuticals since he was 15. Katy and Travis were together on and off during 2008 and finally called it quits in 2009. And now, it seems as though Katy is willing to put their troubles out on the table, no censors, and most definitely no candy coating. Heavy distorted guitar riffs, with some synth action paints a raw emotion kind of track, which matches perfectly with the 'no boundaries' type of lyricism.

"Pearl" is a song about something that can be hard to free yourself from, domestic abuse, weather physical or verbal. She speaks about a woman who use to light up the world, a strong and vibrant human being who had the world in her arms. But now she is trapped in the darkness that is a man who has taken all her confidence and strength. She expresses that she, herself use to be a shell, and that "he" took away her light, afraid of what she could become. She gives hope to those cemented in a wicked relationship, and may be broken down so badly by their partner that they are too scared to leave. She leaves us with a beautifully inspiring verse: "You don't have to be a shell, you're the one who rules your world. You are strong and you'll learn that you can still go on. And you'll always be a pearl."

"You make me feel like I'm losing my virginity, the first time, every time when you're touching me." Can i meet someone who will make me feel like that every time they touch me? A love song about that one person who gives you that "Hummingbird Heartbeat." This track cleverly depicts a love that can be described as a hummingbird searching for that one "magic seed" (AKA Russell Brand) that  one "flower" that has the power to bring life to the little hummingbird (AKA Katy Perry) who is constantly craving the taste of his sticky sweet honey. Suggestive lyricism, oh yea. Creative and sensual all at the same time, this is my kind of song.

In my opinion, my favorite work from Katy is on this album. It has the power to evoke powerful emotions, and contains tracks that get you on your feet. It's a great mix of love, lust, and tribulations, which are things that everyone can relate to. Bravo Ms. Perry... well soon to be Mrs. Brand. 


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