If you’re setting out to create the perfect pop album, Halsey has some bad news for you. According to the “I Am Not A Woman, I’m A God” hit-maker, you’d be better off trying something else because Katy Perry already did it when she dropped Teenage Dream.
They recently shared this pearl of wisdom during an interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe in support of their new album If I Can’t Have Love, I Want Power. In the midst of reflecting on previous projects, Halsey paused to commend Perry’s standout sophomore album.
“Anyone who is trying to make a perfect pop album is wasting their time, anyway,” they said with a laugh. “If you’re trying to make a perfect pop album, you’re just trying to make Teenage Dream again.”
I mean, did she lie? Check out the full interview below. The soundbite in question comes around the 19-minute mark.
Teenage Dream touched down in 2010 and perfectly encapsulated Perry’s camp-friendly aesthetic and penchant for supersized productions. It is a masterpiece of an album that helped shape the sound of the genre over the next decade. Unsurprisingly, it also featured no shortage of hits. Of those, the title track emerged as a clear highlight and was dubbed a song of the decade by Billboard in 2019.
In 2011, Perry tied a record previously held by Michael Jackson when she collected five chart-toppers on the Billboard Hot 100 with the LP’s singles. The superstar notched a sixth No. 1 when she re-released the album with three new songs, including “Part Of Me.”
Technically, that means she only tied the record. However, Billboard reflected on the album’s impact earlier this year and noted that no other recent release has managed to replicate Perry’s chart success. Based on those metrics alone, it’s hard to spot a lie in Halsey’s reasoning.
Although Perry and Halsey have not worked together, we came closer than you’d think to a collaboration. In 2017 Halsey told Vulture that their label wanted to get Perry on “Strangers,” a song that ultimately featured Lauren Jauregui of Fifth Harmony. It wasn’t the right song for a variety of reasons, but maybe the pair can work something out in the future.