By Aubrey Meadows
The anticipated album, Prism, by the worldwide pop star Katy Perry, was released October 18, 2013 and became one of the fastest selling albums. Prism was expected to be “darker” than Perry’s previous albums but many of the songs have a Swedish dance music sound. The opening song on the album, Roar, speaks of self-empowerment.
Critics have mixed reviews on Perry’s fourth album but acknowledge the maturity in her voice. Perry continues to show her playful and performer side in songs like “Birthday”, “International Smile” and “This is How We Do” which have catchy melodies and peppy beats that will surely be ingrained into listeners’ brains after playing it over and over again.
The songs reflect her previous singles from the popular album Teenage Dream and were probably added to the album to satisfy her devoted fans. Although Prism marks a transition in the singer’s career, the record company did not want to do a complete 180 and upset fans who were accustomed to the poppy songs from Teenage Dream.
“Unconditionally”, “Ghost” and “Love Me” represent the darker side of Perry’s artistic abilities and have more depth than “I Kissed a Girl” and “California Girls” could ever accomplish. There is strength, but also softness and vulnerability in Perry’s voice that should be highlighted more in her future songs. Her ballad “This Moment” speaks of living in the present and not dwelling on yesterday.
The structure of the album starts off with dance music that is pleasant to the ear such as “Dark Horse” and progresses to become deeper and reveal Perry’s transformation as a mature artist. In her final song “By the Grace of God”, Perry reflects on her struggle to accept her worth and know that she deserves love. “By the Grace of God” is her greatest achievement, with powerful words and swelling vocals, this song should touch many young people’s lives. Katy Perry was already a role model for young teens and the launching of Prism embodies what a true role model should be.