Katy Perry‘s lead Prism single “Roar” is officially available on iTunes now, where it sits in the runner-up spot, just behind top download “Blurred Lines.” (How many other songs have endured that situation over the past two months?) But while the future radio staple wasn’t scheduled to be released until midnight last night, it sprung a leak over the weekend, allowing the Internet at large to hear the Max Martin/Dr. Luke co-production a couple days early.
Below, we rounded up several thoughts critics had on “Roar.” Some feel it’s a proper pop anthem, while others wish this particular tiger had a little more bite.
:: VIBE touts the song as “a sure-to-be radio hit with an empowering theme similar to her track ‘Firework,’ off 2010′s Teenage Dream album.”
:: Rolling Stone‘s writeup is pretty neutral, though it notes, “With its easy poppy beat and repeated refrains of ‘You held me down but I got up,’ and ‘You’re gonna hear me roar,’ the lead single strikes a determined note for the new album.”
:: New York Daily News calls the song’s chorus “catchy,” and says the following of the early leak: “…instead of going into crisis management, Perry, 28, and her team gave the song an early release.”
:: Entertainment Weekly predicts, “The song’s clear jock-jam aspirations — sample lyrics: ‘I got the eye of the tiger, the fire/Dancing through the fire, ’cause I am a champion/And you’re gonna hear me roar’ — will likely make the song a fall-football staple (the Bengals should just send her a check now).”
:: The Los Angeles Times hears a bit of Bareilles: “Just like her previous inescapable smashes, ‘Roar’ comes courtesy of pop masterminds Dr. Luke and Max Martin and will easily claw its way to the top of radio spins even though the song’s uncomfortably close sonic flirtation with Sara Bareillies’ smash ‘Brave’ already has fans up in arms on Twitter.”
:: Slant isn’t impressed: “‘Roar,’ which references Survivor’s 1982 hit ‘Eye Of The Tiger’ in its rather benign lyrics, leans more toward rock than Perry’s past hits, but it’s still got an unmistakable bubble-gum pop center. It’s more of a yelp than a roar.”
:: The Lava Lizard laments, “‘Roar’ is yet another predictable Pop anthem based on catchy melodies and a radio-friendly beats instead of lyrical depth. How exactly is this song different from Perry’s pervious material? How does it exemplify the darker, more introspective sound of the late 1990s Madonna?”
:: RKD had this to say: “It sounds like Sara Bareilles’ ‘Brave.’ It sounds like the Teenage Dream album, just with less sugar and more cheese. It’s catchy, but not really in a good way. But also not really in a bad way, either. Sorry. I tried to care, but it’s just one of those songs that doesn’t evoke much of anything. I won’t change the station when it comes on the radio, though.”
:: Under The Gun Review pulled the trigger on this upbeat writeup: “Perry wants you to want to scream the chorus from the top of your lungs, and thanks to brilliant production she accomplishes that long before the larger-than-life final refrain kicks in.”
It's growing on me but I am pretty desperate for any pop music right now. It's been a slow year.