Katy Perry made a confident return with her third pop record, Prism. Coming off the huge success of Teenage Dream, expectations were high for Perry's new material. Fortunately, the results are very satisfying. The albums works as a song cycle about over-coming personal loss (such as a breakup) and reaffirming your happiness and ability to love. Prism is, by far, one of the most meticulously written and produced LPs of the year; each song has a clean setting, and every track has a strong hook or chorus to keep it buoyant. While Perry is still the master of fun pop moments on Prism ("Roar," "Birthday," "Walking on Air," and "This is How We Do" among them), her talents really come to shine with ballads like her mid-tempo new single "Unconditionally," the arena love anthem "Double Rainbow," and the autobiographical "By the Grace of God." These tracks show Perry's maturity as she moves in the direction of singer-songwriters like Alanis Morissette, who are interested in creating more spiritual and self-reflective pop. What results from this movement is that Katy Perry has not only crafted a more mature record than her past offerings, but she has also made her most cohesive and consistent album from start to finish. Prism works as unit--a fun and encouraging mediation on love, self-worth, and happiness. It is a pop music treasure.
If you want, you can check out my full length review of the album here.