Do you like your pop with a spoonful of sugar? If yes, chances are you’re a Kim Petras fan.
German singer-songwriter Kim Petras is an artist that’s been on my radar for quite some time. Since her collaboration with Charli XCX, I’ve been fascinated with her bright, bold brand of bubblegum pop. Once her Clarity tour was announced, I had to experience her debut in person.
What about Petras is undeniably alluring and enticing? The sassy, powerhouse vocals, the fact that she was one of the youngest people in the world to undergo gender-reassignment surgery, her versatility and undeniable vulnerability, the swarm of fabulous LGBTQ fans in her wake… oh, and the killer outfits, of course.
90s Bitch Seal of Approval
I’m a girl that grew up with Britney and Christina, and I’m a sucker for the conventional pop tropes. The flashy back-up dancers, that one random featured rapper in the middle of the song, dramatic key changes, sex, partying, breaking up, partying some more– I love them and I love to hate them.
Kim Petras is not looking to dismantle and revolutionize pop music, but she’s playing with the parts. Her social media, streaming-era approach is a change with the times, but the strobe-light, sugary hits resonate with a 90s bitch like me.
Initially, her songs might seem a bit frivolous. They are the kind of songs that gleam with the glamorous life of sex, drugs, and money.
“Shorty in the bathroom and she’s asking ‘where the coke at?’ I spent 20 thousand just to leave it on a coat rack.”Blow it All
But the shining enthusiasm and saucy humor Petras has on stage is second to none. At that point, you lean into the drama of it all.
A Little Bit of Everything
Clarity embraces pop convention, with a ‘lil R&B inflection. It’s a swift, 12-track release lined with 38 minutes of sleek pop hooks.
The disco, electro-base of “Sweet Spot” is blissfully care-free, while “Personal Hell” sounds like a dark, moody Britney. “Do Me” is a belt-out, emotional ballad sweating with mid-80s aerobics pop, while “Meet the Parents” screams of cheeky materialism and flirty flexes.
The club-pop context is there, but not one track sounds the same.
She obviously played the bulk of her set from Clarity, but Petras also threw in some tracks from her Halloween album, Turn Off the Light, just for kicks.
Girl’s a malleable, pop princess on the rise. Working with the notorious Dr. Luke on this debut certainly raises some eyebrows, but it hasn’t seemed to slow her down. I’m intrigued to see where her career takes her next.