Katy Perry's New Album in 16 Sentences or More

katy-perry-prism-album-cover-revealed The day had finally come.

I rushed to my local record store five minutes before it opened, drooling against the glass as they stocked the last one on the shelf.

When ol' Mr. Crenshaw—he’d owned the place as long as I could remember--finally opened the door, the bell jingled as I tore inside, going straight to the “P”s.

There she was, airbrushed makeup glowing amid pastel pink glory: Katy Perry - PRISM. I paid for it in paper money and change, walked out of the store and put it in my car stereo. It has cycled through about 80 times since I bought it.

Okay, that was all a lie. That was what would happen if this was 1998 and people bought CDs anymore. Real life is a lot less exciting. I had actually pre-ordered this album and just clicked “download” on Tuesday morning. The end.

Wasn't my first story so much better? I want to hear more about what it was like only being able to listen to one album without doing physical labor and having to carry around all your music in a glorified binder that weighed as much as you did.

Anyway, the fact that it was six-thousand times more easily accessible than the story above did not diminish my excitement for Katy Perry's new album to finally be released. I had already had the privilege of downloading "Roar," then "Walking on Air" and "Dark Horse," all of which I loved, so I didn't expect to be disappointed. I wasn't.

But I do have a lot of specific thoughts on the songs. (Please pick your jaw up off the floor. Oh wait, you're not shocked at all? Never mind.) So I thought I would share them with you, song by song.

To keep it brief, I have decided to limit myself to ONE SENTENCE per song. One. It may be a run-on sentence, but dang it, I will keep it to one. Because if I had my way we'd be here for days. Actually, just I would, because you would have stopped reading after minute five.

So without further ado I present to you the Laura McClellan 16-Sentence Amateur Review of Katy Perry's PRISM.

UPDATE: Stream the album while you read my descriptions here.

SONG NUMBER ONE: "Roar"* Easily one of the world's most satisfying pop songs, "Roar” makes you wonder where it has been your whole life but then realize you never could’ve pictured your life without it. Rating: A+++++

SONG NUMBER TWO: "Legendary Lovers" Despite the squirminess of the phrase “I feel my lotus bloom," which I find to be an entirely too-descriptive metaphor, this song is an enjoyable hip-hop-y, somehow march-like mid-tempo song which, like many others you will find on this album, is basically just about sex. Rating: B+

SONG NUMBER THREE: “Birthday” “Birthday” is a disco-y dance song with a perfect hook rounding out the chorus, to which you will probably find me dancing in the car, but not singing very loudly because several of the lyrics make me embarrassed. Rating: A

SONG NUMBER FOUR: “Walking on Air” Similar to the one preceding it, the super-catchy “Walking on Air” is a disco-y song about sex, adding to the list of songs I feel uncomfortable singing out loud, but it is infused with a little more hip-hop. Rating: A-

SONG NUMBER FIVE: “Unconditionally” Really all I can think about during this supposed-power-ballad is how it bothers me that she puts the emPHAsis on the wrong sylLABle on “Unconditional” about 800 times (she says un-con-di-TION-alllll”…no…if it doesn’t fit, rewrite the chorus). Rating: B

SONG NUMBER SIX: “Dark Horse” Admittedly very hip-hop for Katy Perry, “Dark Horse” is probably my favorite right now due to its building, unpredictable, belty chorus and, let’s be honest, super crunk beat (did I use that right?). Rating: A+

SONG NUMBER SEVEN: “This Is How We Do” Despite the fact that I can’t relate to anything this song is talking about (Breakfast in last night’s dress? Uh I’m still in my PJs I got for Christmas. Car still at the club valet on Tuesday? I won’t even pay for a valet at Chuy’s unless absolutely necessary), nor is it profound in any way, but I CAN’T HELP IT THIS SONG IS SO CATCHY AND IT WILL NEVER LEAVE MY BRAIN. Rating: A+

SONG NUMBER EIGHT: “International Smile” A delightful, repetitive electronic song, this track rhymes “Artist” with “star dust” which I appreciate, and features a vocoder more than once and I am not mad about it. Rating: A

SONG NUMBER NINE: “Ghost” If you ignore the fact that the first line of this song is “you sent a text” (NO KATY JUST NO), this song is an okay supposed-to-be-sentimental ballad, but it’s not the next “My Heart Will Go On” or anything. Rating: B-

SONG NUMBER TEN: “Love Me” Another slightly slower-paced quasi-ballad, this song has a lot more depth (love yourself in spite of insecurities and all that) and is a lot more compelling musically and lyrically than the others I’ve heard on the album so far, so people will probably identify with it. Rating: A-

SONG NUMBER ELEVEN: “This Moment” This one sounds a little bit like Devo did the production at first, and I’m pretty sure she actually wrote this cliche-filled quasi-ballad for Kelly Clarkson to sing, but hey, people like Kelly Clarkson, so you’ll probably still be on board. Rating: B+

SONG NUMBER TWELVE: “Double Rainbow” (OMG SHE WENT THERE) Another ballad, which is really hard to take seriously at first considering the name of the song, but it’s actually pretty great once you get over that, especially the melody in the pre-chorus and the Phil Collins drums. Rating: A

SONG NUMBER THIRTEEN: “By the Grace of God” I first heard (and loved) this song on her iTunes festival performance, and it is a fantastic, compelling, honest ballad with a perfect melody all the way through. (PLUS GOSPEL-Y BGVS YOU GUYS) Rating: A+

SONG NUMBER FOURTEEN: “Spiritual” (On the deluxe version) Super 80’s-fabulous, this is another disco-y song about sex (sensing a theme?), but I kind of think it’s got a weird vibe and it’s probably one of my least favorite songs on the album, mostly because I don’t think the chorus pays off at all. Rating: C+

SONG NUMBER FIFTEEN: “It Takes Two” (On the deluxe version) Katy is no slouch at writing a melody, you guys, and this one grabs you from the first line, keeping you with her throughout the rest of the song with its gospel influences and just plain catchiness. Rating: A

SONG NUMBER SIXTEEN: “Choose Your Battles” (On the deluxe version) This one doesn’t necessarily grab me in any particular way; it just kind of plays enjoyably in the background while you do something else. Rating: B-

Overall I obviously enjoy the album and you should go get it, but I’m going to stop talking now.**

What’s your favorite song so far? Alternatively, if you aren’t a fan, what’s your favorite album you’ve bought lately?

*Let it be known that I failed at this IMMEDIATELY. My first thoughts were: "How do I love thee? Let me count the ways." Which is ALREADY two sentences and I hadn't even said anything yet.

**Also I was not in any way compensated for this post or affiliated with Katy Perry, though it’s adorable that someone might even think that.

An Amateur Analysis of "Man of Steel"

SIDEBAR: I wrote a (very) short story over at my dear friend Nicole's blog on Friday. Seriously, we're talking a third the length of this post. Check it out here!

man of steel laura mcclellan

Once upon a time, I wrote an amateur analysis of "Brave." I had high expectations for that movie, admittedly, but it let me down in more ways than one. So I shared my thoughts here [Summary: Approx. 500% more bears than anticipated; very little character development]. Reactions were mixed--but it was fun to hear what everyone thought. So I thought I'd go there again.

On Saturday, I finally saw Man of Steel with my husband. Monsters University or Despicable Me 2 would have both come before this movie in my queue, but since it came out first, it was only fair to see this one first. (We are woefully behind because of the whole moving thing.)

I didn't have enormous expectations because I'm not necessarily a die-hard Superman fan, but most superhero movies are at least worth seeing, so I had a general expectation that it would be enjoyable.

It wasn't The Worst Move I've Ever Seen, but I definitely thought it was lacking.

Keep in mind that I like good stories and don't go see movies for special effects or action, but overall I left feeling like it was very surface level in terms of story and character development, and I wasn't invested in it hardly at all.

Here were my main issues with it: [NOTE: calling them "issues" makes it seem like I care deeply about the making of this movie or the legacy of the Superman franchise, but in reality I just have a lot of opinions about things that don't matter.]


1. I didn't care about Superman. In order for me to enjoy a movie, I need to be invested in it. I need to know at least enough to know why that person is the way he is, what gets under his skin, how he interacts with people, etc. Clark, to me, didn't make relationships or interact with people. He had like six lines in the first hour and a half of the movie. He just stood around looking solemn and broody. Don't get me wrong, he was pretty and all, and there's nothing wrong with broody, but this role is not requiring much acting from Henry Cavill at this point. The most emotion I saw him display was when he was yelling at his dad in the truck when he was a teenager.

I'm just saying, I at least need a PERSONALITY. Even if I don't have a ton of background information, show me what you are like. EMOTE. Make me want to hang out with you. Or punch you. Just don't float somewhere in between. And I don't like perfect super heroes. Give me some flaws. Give me some mistakes. Give me some regret. I just need more human elements.

Point 1 Thor for having all of these things, and still being pretty.

2. Superman looked better with a beard. I was sorely disappointed that he didn't stay scruffy. I thought it was an exponential improvement from the stereotypical Superman appearance and would have been a welcome refresh to the whole Superman look. But I'm partial to facial hair. Wouldn't you have liked him better if he kept the beard? Is it a requirement to be clean-cut and slick back your hair if you wear a cape? I'm asking.

My new mission in life is to create the first scruffy super hero. He will wear a v-neck.

3. It could have ended like three times. I mean honestly. When Zod was STILL alive after all the others got sucked into a black hole and they fought for like another three hours? Just...we get it, okay? Enough.

4. More setup, less fighting please. I know this is a total girl move, but overall this movie lacked background. I need to know how Clark just HAPPENED upon the ship. I need to know how they just flip a switch to change the air from "human compatible" to "Krypton-person (Kryptonite??) compatible." I need to know how Giselle from Enchanted who is a JOURNALIST in this film, by the way, came up with a way to create a black hole to suck the bad guys into. I need to know how they arrived at that conclusion. Too many things in this movie seemed coincidental.

Also, things that could have been fleshed out more got totally bullet-pointed, and I was left wondering what the heck just happened. Like all of a sudden Russell Crowe reappears and Clark now has a full costume and a cape and apparently had time to shave and he can fly now and WHAT. I don't understand how he could I know he jumped and could soar because of less gravity and all, but how does that translate to FLYING and HOVERING? I NEED MORE INFORMATION.

And thanks for telling me Zod's predisposed job at the very end. Could've used that information 45 minutes ago. I would have cared more.

5. STOP RUINING BUILDINGS THERE ARE STILL PEOPLE IN THERE! Yo. Clark. The rest of the bad guys have been sucked into a black hole and Metropolis has stopped caving in on itself. Let's take the fight outside, okay? How about let's NOT flail around amid skyscrapers and send several more crashing down. Also by the way this movie could've ended 10 minutes ago.

Basically I've concluded that Dr. Who has ruined everything else for me by creating such a complex and beloved character that I can't even deal with Superman's blah-ness anymore. [But really, was him fighting Zod not just a worse version of The Doctor's face-off with The Master? Someone help me out here.]

In conclusion, Superman should've had a beard, and I need someone to make up a backstory or two for me.

Have you seen Man of Steel? What did you think? (Males, feel free to argue that fighting > story development. I won't be offended.)