Young American singer-songwriter and rapper Ke$ha returns with the follow up to her 2011 effort Animal. The performer who broke through singing with Flo Rida on Right Round in 2009 can now pick and choose from producers and co-writers however while she may have had help on hand from a number of musical protégés and admirers the second outing doesn’t harness the same raw power.
From the opening dance floor prepared title track this album clangs against all the clichés of modern pop music. It isn’t just that the lyrics seem to be a call to arms for people to shout YOLO and vomit in minicabs, it’s that female pop stars across the globe are able to do this kind of thing much better and without setting ones teeth quite so much on edge.
When NME interviewed Ke$ha earlier this year she promised an album inspired by 1970’s rock, and while there are a number of over-produced guitar licks in play, it is mixed in with the crunk of dub-ready bass notes and flange vocals that ruin any credibility the statement could have had. Even managing to rope in or wheel out car insurance salesman Iggy Pop on Dirty Love doesn’t save this Titanic of an album as it smashes into an unseen iceberg. As each track passes it seems as if we are dealing with a ‘musician’ with multiple-personality disorder. While the whining lyrics echo wild and true on each track there is little else to combine this into a state anyone could call an album. There really is no flow. It is as though some kind of record company rep has mind mapped what other female soloists are doing, and then built an album attempting to throw too many of those elements together.
I know it’s never an appropriate time to say “I think I prefer Tick Tock” but at least it served up a number of excellent covers and parody versions. If you are somehow stuck having to listen to the album I would suggest Wonderland serves up the least offence but I say that with the headache caused from a gun being pressed to my temple. I guess if you like Ke$ha then this album is for you, but if you are looking for something original, turn to the other contenders of the scene.