04:25 PM EDT 12/19/2013

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Critic: Katy Perry's Prism Takes Her Out of Comfort Zone

Katy Perry's Prism Takes Her Out of Comfort Zone

Originally posted 10/22/2013 10:00AM

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It wasn't a good sign for me when "Roar," the No. 1 single that heralded Katy Perry's third studio album, felt kind of tame compared to Sara Bareilles's "Brave," a similar self-empowerment anthem that came out a few months before.

But the good news is that "Roar" (which, admittedly, has since grown on me) isn't even one of the best songs on the vibrant, multicolored Prism – and there are certainly plenty more hits where that came from.

This is a pop blockbuster that easily beats 2010's hit-laden behemoth Teenage Dream. It finds Perry once again working with A-list producers like Dr. Luke, Max Martin, Stargate and Benny Blanco, and they deliver the hooks and beats for the diva, whether it's blissful dance tracks ("Birthday") or forceful power ballads ("Unconditionally").

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