Sound — 2
If UG is your only source of Ke$ha news and let's be honest, it probably is then you might be under the impression that she's got aspirations as a rockstar. The Tennessee party monkey has been telling the press all about her metal credentials and genre-smashing aspirations in the media preamble for new album "Warrior". If you've read about it you might be feeling sceptical and, well... You'd be right to. The most you can say about her new effort is that you can tell she likes rock and metal what you can't say is whether she has any clue what to do with it.
"Warrior" opens with a handful of club-pop tracks similar to those which she made her name on, fit for purpose as backing to tightly clothed guys inviting girls to the bar for a complimentary roofie. There are some brief forays into deeper electronic territory but the real talking points come later, when she gets the guitars out.
This seems like a good time to point out that Ke$ha (co-)writes all of her own songs. When she wants something in there, it gets in there; even it is watered down and twisted beyond recognition. There are some real drums and crunchy guitars on "Thinking Of You" and "Only Wanna Dance With You" the latter even features members of The Strokes but "Led Zep IV" this is not. The scarce blues influence ends up sounding like Taylor Swift and the rock influence sounds like Avril Lavigne, racy lyrics notwithstanding. While "Warrior" does offer up a few more curveballs than debut album "Animal", they're little more than novelty and if she does do catchy, upbeat pop well then that remains the extent of it.
Lyrics — 3
"All that matters is the beautiful life", so says our girl on "All That Matters". Elsewhere she wants to dance, she wants to get high and it also sounds like she might want Iggy Pop's geriatric thrust on "Dirty Love", which features a cameo from the punk icon. She's nothing if not consistent. Her taste for the trashy is half of what's got her this far, and Iggy probably sees something of himself in that but ultimately this is more car insurance ad than "Raw Power". Besides the odd ballad and a couple of nice sentiments about following your dreams, this is mostly her staple diet of sex, drugs and pop.
Overall Impression — 2
Maybe it's unrealistic, but I'd like to think there's a karmic element that will come into play here. Sing along and you'll find yourself with a sore throat. Dance while sober and someone will throw their drink on you. Buy it as a stocking filler and Santa will move you over to the bad' list on principle. Ke$ha aims to empower her audience and help them find their inner warrior', but she's put this scribe on the brink of self-destruction. A truly degrading experience.