We know that Britney’s second single from her current album campaign has been available online to listen to for a while now. However, when it comes to Britney, we need plenty of time to digest new songs. You can never rush things where Britney is concerned. Having had sufficient time to gather our thoughts, then, we have concluded the following.
– This is Britney’s first UK-released ballad as a single since ‘Everytime’. That’s the same ‘Everytime’ that is Britney’s best single EVER released, according to us. The same ‘Everytime’ that has managed to touch us in a way few songs ever have done or will do. In case your memory is bad, or if you’re not a dedicated Godney devotee, let us remind you of singles that have been released in the UK since ‘Everytime’:
Piece of Me
Break The Ice
If U Seek Amy
Hold It Against Me
Till The World Ends
I Wanna Go
Scream & Shout
Ooh La La
All these singles released and not a single ballad amongst them. Now think of other big league popstars like Katy Perry or Rihanna. It’s impossible to imagine these artists not releasing a ballad as a single in 9 years. Some of their biggest hits have been ballads. What is the reason for the lack of one in Britney’s discography? Maybe, just maybe, Britney realises the sheer brilliance of ‘Everytime’ and worries she won’t match it again. Maybe Britney has become so reliant upon hiding her vocals behind layers of computer wizardry and trickery that she has been scared of releasing a ballad. It’s likely a combination of both factors. Either way releasing a ballad for the first time in 9 years is a pretty huge event in Britney land.
– Given our 9 years’ worth of expectation we are not going to lie. We were disappointed when we first heard ‘Perfume.’ We thought it sounded very very obviously Sia – the singer behind David Guetta’s mega-hit ‘Titanium’ and one of pop’s hardest working song writers – for she has written this track. We stand by that yet our initial disappointment has faded to be able to appreciate this for what it is. It’s been so long since we heard a track that sounded authentically ‘Britney’: touching, vulnerable, and emotion packed. ‘Perfume’ manages to hit at least one of these criterion. We particularly like the ‘I’m trying to be cool’ line. That line in particular sounds very Britney.
– The problem with ‘Perfume’ is that it’s just good. It’s not amazing, it’s not brilliant, but it’s not as bad as we thought when we first heard it. We’d have liked the ‘I’m just incsecure’ line to last longer; the song seems in a hurry to reach the bridge. Ultimately the song just lingers around. It is pleasant enough to listen to but sadly not the earth-shattering piece of vulnerable beauty we were hoping for.