Is “Witness” the Start to Katy’s Great New Era, or is it a Techno Flop?

By: Ashley Alvarez//

katy-perry-witnessIf you didn’t already know via her 24-hour live stream, Katy Perry’s new album, Witness, dropped this week. This has been a long awaited album and hopes remain high in terms of its success. Katy Perry has had many smash hits and it would be amazing to see her stay on top. For example, even though her album “Teenage Dream” was released in 2010, the singles from that album are still played all the time on pop radio.

Personally, I was really excited for Witness, especially since I wasn’t the biggest fan of her previous release, Prism. I really wanted an album from Katy that I could jam out to like I do to Teenage Dream. I loved the sound and lyrics from that album and I was really hoping Witness would return back to that.

Unfortunately, I can’t say I was very blown away by Witness. If I’m being honest, it felt like it was trying too hard. It wasn’t horrible, but at the same time, it wasn’t anything I’ll be listening to again any time soon. To put it lightly, it seems to have just missed the mark.


The album opened with the song “Witness,” which was probably one of the better songs, but it still didn’t pull me in like I feel like an opening song should. I wanted it to entice me and intrigue me, but it didn’t do either of those things. Since Katy  seems to have been able to bust out hits like crazy, I feel like being able to create an awesome opener wouldn’t be too hard for her. I was hoping she’d do something similar to how Marina & the Diamonds opened her album Froot with “Happy”, an extremely heartfelt and emotional song that lured people in instantly.

When I first heard “Roulette” I was reminded of Lady Gaga. I love Gaga, so this wouldn’t be considered an entirely bad thing (even though Katy has been accused many times in the past of copying Gaga). Not only does the beat sound similar to Gaga’s “Poker Face”, but the name of Katy’s song “Roulette” follows a similar theme. It may be coincidental, but still I can’t ignore it. Aside from that, the song was still not interesting to me at all. It also bothered me that I could barely understand her when she sang the chorus because she wasn’t properly enunciating.


It’s possible that I listened to this album with a preconceived notion of how I already felt. I was pretty much decided on how I felt after listening to her single, “Swish Swish,” which made me feel like Katy is trying to conform to a different style of music in an attempt to stay popular. It sounds like a remix that should be playing somewhere in an EDM club. The beat sounded like something I’ve heard already plenty of times and it took no risks. Not to mention, its strikingly similar lyrically to Iggy Azalea’s, “Switch”. Boring was the best word for “Swish Swish”, in my opinion.

I wish I could say that there was at least one song from the album I really loved. The only one that I liked at all was “Deja Vu”, but there weren’t too many notable things about it that stood out. The album as a whole sounds like one really long song. The lyrics and song topics all seem like they’ve been done a thousand times already and the song tunes all sound similar. The songs weren’t upbeat enough to be radio hits, but also not slow enough to be sad ballads.


Though I typically enjoy when artists create new personas through their albums, I am not partial to this new persona Katy created. During her One of the Boys era, she was risky and out there. She made her mark on the world and everyone knew her name. During her Teenage Dream era, she came out with smash hit after smash hit but still had songs containing immensely deep lyrics that could bring me to tears. The Witness phase is futuristic sounding, but overall it’s just not something that I enjoy.

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