"It's way more edgy than the last album," songwriter Claude Kelly, who composed several tracks for the as-yet-untitled album, tells PEOPLE at a New York NARAS reception. He adds that Spears, 29, is returning to the grittier sounds of 2007's Blackout. "[It's] more in the vein of the album before," he says.
Though Kelly admits he's not completely sure what the "final product is going to be," he does say, "the last album [2008's Circus] was more clean pop. [Its purpose] was to reintroduce Britney to the world as the pop princess."
As the first single also indicates, Spears, who Tweeted from her "Hold It Against Me" video shoot this weekend, has new tunes are definitely club-worthy.
"She's always ready," Kelly says. "Dr. Luke and Max Martin are running the show, and it's all about the beats. It has a heavier bass line and it's much harder, more urgent, more club. She's ready again!"