Hit Parade: Katy Perry featuring Juicy J - "Dark Horse"

Not one of Katy Perry's better efforts, chart success notwithstanding...
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I must purge "Timber" by Pitbull and Ke$ha out of my brain. This house must be clean. Also, I'm still behind on number one songs. I never did get to Eminem, but I was a teenager in suburban Detroit during his heyday. I've had plenty of Eminem in my life. So, today, I shall turn to the song currently topping the charts: "Dark Horse" by Katy Perry, featuring Juicy J. I've heard Ms. Perry before, having listened to "Roar" for this project. I remember it as being fairly banal, by the books grrrl power stuff. Will "Dark Horse" be different? Yes, because Juicy J is on the song. Other than that, maybe not.

Well, yes this song is different. It's not so much lazy pop rock. It is slower, quieter, more contemplative. I mean, I don't want to make it seem like it is a Morrissey song. It sort of reminds me of "Royals," in as much as it builds itself around snaps. Her voice soars in the chorus, and the music gets kind of busy and stuff. I mean, it is a paint-by-numbers pop song. It is what, I imagine, Perry trades in, given her popularity.

That music sounds find. I liked the intro and the beat of the chorus is pretty good. Lyrically, however, this is a mess. I feel like it was written with mad libs. I am not entirely sure what it is supposed to be about. There is some shit about not playing with matches. Perry says she's the perfect storm, but also a dark horse. This is weird. A "dark horse" in sports is somebody who is an underdog essentially. Is Perry trying to position herself as an underdog here? But, like, in a romantic sense? To what degree, and for why? I don't know what she is driving at. I don't really care.

Strangely, Perry's lyrics are better than Juicy J's. He has his hot verse, but it is awful. It also really doesn't fit into this song, or any pop song trying to climb the charts. Juicy talks about how great and sexy and wonderful Perry is, and how she is like a drug. Which, you know, makes her the opposite of a dark horse. He also references Jeffery Dahmer and talks about how Perry is his Sleeping Beauty and he's going to put her in a coma. It is a real debate over which of those lines is more problematic.

I admittedly have not heard a ton of Perry's music, but based on what I have heard, she seems to be the personification of careerist pop music. There is nothing wrong with being a careerist musician, what with this being her career and all. It is just that her music has no substance to it. Her lyrics are trite and inane. She can sing alright, and the people who put her music together know their stuff, I guess. If I heard this song in the distance so that I couldn't make out the lyrics, I wouldn't mind having it in the background. I can't say anything better about it. I miss "Roar."