Katy Perry's "California Gurls" is Robin S's "Show Me Love" 17 years on.
With that vibe-toned synth line, the '90s dancefloor drum track, the diva-ish "ohs" at the tail of the pre-chorus and the slap bass, this new single from the "I Kissed a Girl" singer is a welcomed golden era rehash, Golden Coast style.
The pros of this summer jam include that funky, subtle Jackson 5-ish guitar lick that titters all over the chorus, rolling the thing even further decades back. Perry maintains her coy, flirtatious persona by keeping the clothes on and her hands up in the track, emphasis on the party and less so the party in one's pants (Sex on the Beach is a drink name, guuuuys, get it?).
Lyrically, it's delightfully mindless, a generic "rep" of all things Californian and a double-dose of Snoop Dogg love. Consider Miley's "Party in the U.S.A." flag properly folded and stowed. Although, one metaphor doesn't quite hold "up": isn't a melting popsicle a bad thing?
Oh and laser sound effects. Man, did I miss those.
The cons: Snoop's raps are ridiculous. Just about anybody could be making those rhymes, and in the same manner, rendering his contributions dead on impact. "Summertime's everything!" Really, Snoop, really? That his giggleabout seven seconds from the end. Sounds precisely the same as Pitbull's trademark laugh, which now is as distinct and cheesy as the Wilhelm_scream.
We hope Perry collected a little pocket skrill for the Jeep name-checks. Beyond that, this is a serious summer-themed money-maker, the first single from Perry as-yet-untitled album, likely due this summer from Capitol. Read HitFix Melinda Newman's recent interview with Perry for more details on the dance-fueled effort.