I don’t think you could go anywhere without hearing the debut single of this woman at the end of 2009, or even the beginning of 2010. TiK ToK was a massive mainstream success, and because of that, Ke$ha’s debut album was hugely anticipated to see if she could live up to the expectations that had arised from TiK ToK. Previous to her solo career, Ke$ha featured on Flo Rida’s 2009 hit Right Round, co-wrote The Veronicas’ song This Love, sang backing vocals for Britney Spears’ Lace And Leather and appeared in the video for Katy Perry’s I Kissed A Girl. This all helped in gaining exposure in the run up to her debut. But all the exposure in the world can’t necessarily guarantee a brilliant album, leaving the inevitability of an anti-climatic debut a major factor here. Is Animal worth the hype?

It’s important to start off your album in style, and Your Love Is My Drug sets the tone, that being an electronic-fuelled piece of pop brilliance. A perfect radio song, even if some of the lyrics aren’t what you want your kids singing along to. Nevertheless, when Ke$ha starts singing after her raps, it’s a song you’ll have problems not singing along to. Next, the hugely popular TiK ToK. There isn’t a lot that can be said for this song, you just have to listen to it. It’s a dance floor anthem, period. The chorus is melodic, with the bass line heavily electro-infused. There is no surprise that this song did so well globally. Then, probably my favourite song on the album, Take It Off continues the perfect debut. Yes, it’s also a song you don’t really want sang to you by your 8-year-old daughter, but for young adults in a club, it’s sure to be a floor filler. Kiss N Tell starts with just Ke$ha and a single-tone bass line, before exploding into full electronic goodness. The only problem I have with this song, as I do with many of Ke$ha’s songs, is that it’s heavy auto-tuned. Meaning that we lose the actual vocals are lost behind a robotic mask. If you aren’t worried about vocals, and just fancy a dance-pop song, then this is definitely for you. Stephen is a light and breezy change from the previous songs we’ve heard. Ignoring the slightly whiney bridge during the middle of  it, overall the song is actually pretty decent, with the chorus highlighting the breeziness I mentioned before. After that, Blah, Blah, Blah is another huge electro banger. I have to admit, I wasn’t a fan at first, but after a few listens it caught my attention. It features 3OH!3, although it wouldn’t be a miss if they weren’t there at all. “Stop ta-ta-talking that blah, blah, blah” will definitely be uttered by many people, I’m sure. Hungover is another song I wasn’t really fussed about before, but hearing it a few times, it’s pretty decent. It’s a different side to the album than we’ve had before, it’s the slowest song we’ve had. The chorus took me by surprise, it has an off-beat feel to it that I actually quite like. Party At A Rich Dude’s House is another fast-paced action song. I can’t say it’s my favourite on the record, but there is, however, one high point to this song. The falsetto during the middle of the song is actually pretty decent, showing Ke$ha can sing behind the auto-tune. Backstabber has a monotoned, rap verse before going into a higher register, also basically monotoned but in a different key. The song is okay, it’s not really a highlight, but the chorus is better than the verse. Animal seems to have a love for catchy choruses, because this is also one of those songs. Blind is a song I actually didn’t think I’d hear on Animal. It seems like it’s the most believable, most authentic song on the album. I would almost stretch as far to say that Ke$ha sounds slightly vulnerable on it, I know that’s a strange thing to say on it, considering the previous songs heard. Bringing back the tempo, Dinosaur is a humourous song about an old man seemingly “hitting on” Ke$ha. Some of the lyrics may be a little politically incorrect, but the song is one that’ll definitely leave an impression in your head. Especially the whistling during the chorus. I love when she sings over the whistling. Dancing With Tears In My Eyes doesn’t really hold in my memory when I look back over the album, it’s a good song for when you’re listening to it, but, if you think back, there are plenty of songs that are better. Boots & Boys is another singing-rap song. The chorus is catchy, even if there is no actual melody, or very little of one anyway. But there is no doubt that it’s a song that can be sang along too with ease. Animal starts to bring the album to a decent close, the song has a great chorus and is a definite improvement from the last two songs.  VIP feels very familiar, as it’s like a few of the singing-rap songs Ke$ha features on the album. The backing music is actually kind of entrancing. Finally, a bonus track on the Japanese edition, CUNxTuesday. It’s a slower feel to most of the songs on here, with a chilled out, relaxed feel to it. It probably should’ve replaced a couple of the final songs in all honesty.

All I can say is, it started off so well! The first half of the album is more than worthy of the hype Ke$ha was getting. But Animal, then, started to nosedive, until Blind rescued it briefly. At least, it seems, she doesn’t want to be taken seriously, as almost all of her songs are about alcohol, sex and drugs. Ke$ha is definitely an artist that will either really hit, or really miss. I’m not sure I’m comfortable with that inconsistency. 7.5/10

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