Single Review: Katy Perry – Roar
As the title might suggest, Katy Perry has turned over a musical leaf. Gone are the days of the baby blue wigs and pure pop tuneage, she’s turned her hand to screamo and ‘Roar’ is her first venture into the vocal style known only as growling. No, ofcourse not. Forgive me, Katy Kats for killing off the weaker of your people with that statement but since ‘Roar’ has leaked, we all know that it’s actually a decent step in the right direction. Enough Perry to satisfy and innovative enough to forge forward in the omni-changing world of pop.
I don’t want to ruin the song for you, so I’m resisting the overwhelming urge to demand you skip straight to the chorus. It is astounding. It literally does what it says on the tin – it’s stomping, fierce and, just to be different, it’s mid-tempo. You weren’t expecting that, were you? The triumphant chorus isn’t the best thing about ‘Roar’ either – as she teases it in the first half of the hook, the post-chorus is the crux of the tune. Made famous from it’s feature spot in the teasers that Perry has been tormenting us with, the sing-a-long refrain is the moment in which ‘Roar’ reaches the tremendous heights that it’s lyrical i’m-stronger-now-thanks-very-much theme demands.
Even more exciting, particularly looking forward to upcoming album ‘Prism’, Katy has been taking a few pointers from her alt-pop support acts. Marina, Oh Land and Robyn have all been critically acclaimed thanks to their left-field take on perky pop and in the instrumental of ‘Roar’s verses, their inspiration has finally come through. Don’t get me wrong though, there isn’t anything extraordinarily strange in the music but a few chirpy plucks go a long way in building the spunky foundations to build that mammoth chorus on. Did I mention that the chorus is huge? It’s really huge, guys. Huge.
Forgive me for isolating that one highlight from the song – I worry you might think that the rest is tosh, but it’s not. It’s a beautifully crafted pop song that stands as the perfect stepping stone from the ‘Teenage Dream’ era. It’s more mature, in one way – it’s not going to be doused in bubblegum flavoured candyfloss in the live sets, anyway. But on top of all that growth and development, ‘Roar’ is still fun and exciting and liberating which are the exact qualities that have birthed Katy Perry into the renowned pop starlet that she is today.
Words: Simon McMurdo