Album Review: Katy Perry’s ‘Prism’

Amanda Meyer

Katy Perry has officially abandoned the “Teenage Dream.”

Perry announced her latest album, “Prism,” earlier this summer, and released the first single from the album soon after. “Roar” quickly climbed the charts and sat at No. 1 for multiple weeks.

Perry made the upcoming album an interactive experience for fans by releasing bits of lyrics and sound clips from tracks off the album and giving fans the opportunity to vote on what song they would like to see released. Perry made it clear that these songs were not necessarily singles, but more so promotional tracks for the album.

“Dark Horse” won and was made available on iTunes, followed by its opponent, “Walking on Air” which was made available a few weeks later.

Perry made previews of each track on the album available on iTunes a week before the album release, and also allowed fans to stream the full album on her website.  

The opening track and first single from the album, “Roar,” sets up the album as a clear movement away from Perry’s sweeter “Teenage Dream” era.  She makes it clear that she is a force to be reckoned with, and will not be held down.

The album offers a variety of scornful breakup tracks, sexy and suggestive tunes, and love ballads. But of course it would not be a Katy Perry album without some just-for-fun pop anthems.

After listening to the album once through, I honestly was not that impressed. But as I listened more, the songs began to grow on me, and I started enjoying it. My only disappointment came from expecting a darker tone and getting nearly the same sound as her previous album, but there are still some noticeable differences.

One of the best tracks on the album, “By The Grace of God” is a very personal song in which Perry recalls the initial aftermath of her divorce from Russell Brand. The song follows Perry through a time of suicidal thoughts in which she was heavily supported by family and friends. As the song progresses, so does her vocal strength, and by the end you are left knowing that she came out on top.

The songs “Birthday” and “This is How We Do” seem to echo Perry’s previous sound, and could probably have been featured on “Teenage Dream” without seeming out of place. Both are very fun and virtually pointless, but still very pleasing to listen to.

The best tracks on the album are unfortunately only featured in the deluxe version. “Spiritual” is a sensual love song with a very laid-back, easy tone. The song was co-written by Perry and her boyfriend, John Mayer.

“It Takes Two” is a coming-of-age post-breakup track about being the bigger person and taking responsibility for your own actions. The song has a liberating feel to it, and gives off the impression that Perry may actually be over her ex-husband once and for all.

Overall, “Prism” is a great listen. It has variety and has definitely shown the growth of Katy Perry vocally and lyrically since her last album.