Katy Perry unlocked another song from “Prism” at midnight on iTunes, unleashing “Dark Horse,” an atmospheric, spaced-out track featuring rapper Juicy J.

Perry continues the animal imagery started on “Prism’s” first single (and chart topper) “Roar,” as she compares herself to dark horse, although she uses the term in a slightly different meaning than the usual underdog meaning: “So you want to play with magic/boy you should know what you’re falling for/baby do you dare to do this because I’m coming at you like a dark horse,” she sings.

It’s not as out there (literally and figuratively) at “E.T.,” but it’s definitely not Perry’s standard pop with typical verse and chorus, though with its finger snaps and pulsating, hypnotic beat, it will certainly fit in at radio. Juicy J’s rap —outside of regrettable line “She cuts your heart out like Jeffrey Dahmer”—fits in smoothly, though makes the cut sound a little dated. I know it’s only been a little over a year since almost every pop track had a dropped-in rap out of seemingly nowhere, but we’ve already moved on from that somewhat. At least Juicy J’s rap fits in thematically, but for some reason, his heavily autotuned line, “There’s no going back,” takes me right back to  Psy saying “Gangnam Style.”


With both “Roar” and “Dark Horse,” Perry has presented songs about a woman regaining her power and overcoming vulnerability. It’s too soon to know if that’s where all of “Prism” is headed but it does sound like she’s pushing her own boundaries in a way that is commendable and in a way that shows growth, but still leaves plenty of the goofy Perry that people know and love (you only have to look at the adorable video for “Roar” to know that).

What do you think of “Dark Horse?”