Look, I get it. We’re students. Indie cred is important to us. Once I had finished Ke$ha’s Warrior I had to put on Kendrick Lamar’s latest album just to feel better about my reputation. Then I put Warrior back on.

In a chart that is dominated by dime-a-dozen dance, Ke$ha’s quirky and dirty pop is a relief. The pulsing lights and bassline clichés are all present, but there is something infinitely more raw and visceral about Ke$ha’s approach to pop that makes this a whole lot more exciting than anything else on the radio.

The double whammy of title track ‘Warrior’ and lead single ‘Die Young’ solidifies Ke$ha’s earlier claim that the party don’t start til she walks in, and these tracks are the sound of her kicking the doors down. Both are designed to get inside your head for weeks, and have so much swagger that you will be able to cringe at people striking their best catwalk moves on the dancefloor for ages to come.

To prevent any sort of mid-album lull, a few special guests pop up. On ‘Dirty Love’ Iggy Pop competes with Ke$ha for dominance in what is the most rock ‘n’ roll track of her career so far. Elsewhere, Julian Casablancas unconvincingly tells us he wants to dance with us on the aptly named ‘Only Wanna Dance With You.’

Ignoring the embarrassing ‘Gold Trans Am’, which sounds like a poor man’s ‘Peacock’, by Katy Perry, Ke$ha is on to a winner with Warrior. It’s fun, it’s pop with rock ‘n’ roll sensibilities, and it’s a light relief in amongst the current apathetic pop climate.

[Scott Wilson]

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