When I think about singer/songwriters, I don’t think Ke$ha. I think Fiona Apple, John Mayer, Adele. Truth is, Ke$ha is a singer/songwriter and credit shouldn’t be diminished on her credibility because she is a mainstream pop star. The Ke$ha’s, Katy Perry’s and Lana Del Rey’s write the lyrics and melodies to their music (and other’s) and spend studio time assisting with the production. Sure, they are very image heavy and their music is fed and eaten up by the masses, but they are writing great pop music that is infectious and stuck in your head for days.
“Warrior” opens up with the track of the same name and sets the bigger, cleaner and matured tone for the album. “Warrior” is the perfect opening track, one of the strongest and most immediate, the song slowly builds and gives you just enough to want to finish listening to it while impatiently waiting for the next track and the one after. “Die Young” and “C’Mon” are both songs that “Animals” (Ke$ha’s pet name for her fans) have most likely heard, the former being the lead single with an accompanying video and live performances to boot. “Die Young” sits pretty in the top five on the iTunes singles chart amidst the stiff competition from veteran performers. “C’Mon” has a lighter sound than the first two songs with a nice airy sound during the verses and the signature Ke$ha beat during the chorus. Rhyming “sabertooth tiger” with “Budweiser” gets me all excited and puts me in a good mood. I can see this becoming single #4 if her label gives her that much leeway .
“Thinking of You” is a bittersweet kiss off song that has Ke$ha sounding bitter, but not like a crybaby, more like “aw, what we had was cool, but you missed out.” The last two words in the song, in true Ke$ha style, will make you love the song and her that much more. Ke$ha goes hard on “Crazy Kids” shifting from whistles and an acoustic guitar being strummed, the build up seems predictable, but $ goes into super heavy bass mode. “Crazy Kids” is musically unpredictable and keeps the listeners attention. Of course, it has a catchy as hell chorus. Would make a killer single. $’s version of a ballad, “Wherever You Are” join “Dancing With Tears In My Eyes” and “The Harold Song” in terms of softer, personal lyrics over a mid tempo dance beat. I live for this Ke$ha. Her song writing abilities may not be that of the Fiona Apple’s, Amy Winehouse’s or Adele’s, but Ke$ha has a knack for sneaking in a lyrically heartfelt track and hiding it in between synths, bass and other dance track sounds.
Growling over a rock track with Iggy Pop, Ke$ha brings her unique style and dirty pop steelo to this Peaches inspired track, “Dirty Love.” Loves Peaches and loves Ke$ha. Come to think of it, Ke$ha is Peaches more mainstream and less foul mouthed little sister. Stripping it down and getting deep with an autobiographical song about how she got to where she is, $ gives us classic rock ballad realness. A reflective song that doubles as an appreciation song for what she worked for. If this becomes a single, the video will be stellar. “Only Wanna Dance With You” is a forgettable album cut that sounds like it would be a b-side on a single or a bonus track that is only available in Japan. Nothing special. Not horrible, but this probably won’t be anyone’s favorite.
A definite dance track, “Supernatural” will be the soundtrack to party goers in the car before they get to the party. An album track, but not a bad one, Ke$ha gets you into the groove. The breakdown is so cool. I can imagine myself rewinding that part many times in my car or on my headphones while I get my workout on. Yup. “All That Matters (The Beautiful Life)” is a perfectly constructed and well written pop song, but it’s not a standout. With that said, it’s better than some pop tart’s single’s. Ahem, “R.I.P.” Just saying. The last track on the album is just as important, if not more important than the opening track. It ties the collection of songs together and its the “goodbye” of the album, nothing comes after the final track, unless you get the deluxe edition. “Love Into The Light” is giving me Phil Collin’s “In The Air Tonight” realness with that sample. Heavy, sexy and cool, things get really real with the dramatic music and dramatic lyrics. My absolute favorite on the album. A sad Ke$ha makes great pop music.
From open to close, Ke$ha gives the pop world something to look forward to; singles, performances and music videos for the next year. $ solidifies her spot in the pop spectrum unabashed and unapologetic, $’s third studio effort overshadows other pop girl’s newest efforts by keeping things fresh and not too serious.