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The Problem With... Katy Perry's "Part of Me"

When I saw Katy Perry last summer, one scene that stuck with me occurred during "Hot N Cold," where Katy donned a number of costumes under a hula-hoop curtain. I think that represents Katy's career: A series of cut-away costumes replaced behind a magical curtain.

Katy Perry's latest, "Part of Me," debuted with a blazing stage and comic book-looking costume at the Grammy Awards a couple weeks ago. The verses sound like Britney Spears' single "Till the World Ends," also produced by Dr. Luke and Max Martin. If you just heard the chorus, as I did when I flipped to it on the radio one day, you might think "Part of Me" was from Kelly Clarkson's latest album, Stronger, breakup theme and all.

It figures. Breakup music is not only evocative, it's pretty damn profitable. Ask Adele, who's album 21 continues to sell nicely after a year on the charts (the Grammy bump probably helped). Music producers probably noticed this last year, so they responded by making singles out of songs by Clarkson, Drake and Cee-Lo. Katy's latest single is a part of this, too.

Although the lyric "so you can keep the diamond ring" calls up her real separation from Russell Brand, the track's helping of mnemonic authenticity comes too little, too late for Katy's synthetic career. Considering the Adele factor, this costume is cheap and tearing at the seams.

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