Katy Perry and Nicki Minaj recently tried to weaponize their pop music in what was supposed to be a smart Taylor Swift diss track, “Swish Swish.” Unfortunately, as reports agree, the track is much more bark than actual bite.
Pop singers Katy Perry and Nicki Minaj come from very different backgrounds, but they both have beefs with Taylor Swift. Perry and Swift originally began feuding because of something involving Katy “stealing” Swift’s boyfriend and the backup dancers for her tour back in 2012. Taylor responded with the relatively effective diss track “Bad Blood,” and the rest is history, as reported by Digital Spy.
Swift and Minaj initially clashed over a misunderstanding about one of Nicki’s post-Oscar tweets. You can read all about it on Billboard.
“When women come together and they decide to unite, this world is going to be a better place,” Perry said in an interview last week with Entertainment Weekly, and she is now practicing what she preached by teaming up with Minaj to take their mutual enemy Taylor Swift down a peg. Or at least try to.
Perry and Minaj decided to join forces and use the pop music they know best in order to pack twice the punch in a passive retaliation against Swift, and they came up with “scathing” diss track “Swish Swish.” The only problem is that, according to reviews, the track fails utterly in its efforts; it is less “burn-fest” and more “boring.”
“‘Swish Swish’ is not a good song,” writes Lainey Gossip. “The lyrics are corny as f**k.”
“Your game is tired/You should retire/You’re ’bout cute as/An old coupon expired/And karma’s not a liar/She keeps receipts,” Perry croons. “A tiger/Don’t lose no sleep/Don’t need opinions/From a shellfish or a sheep/Don’t you come for me/No, not today.”
She also makes a lot of strained basketball metaphors and repeatedly uses the term “bish” repeatedly to refer to someone that her lyrics strongly imply is Taylor Swift.
“While Perry is quick with the put-downs, she doesn’t appear to have any actual dirt to spill,” writes The Daily Beast, suggesting that Katy Perry is obviously making an effort to string together some quips, but those quips are not digging deep enough to be impactful.
“Money can buy a rhyming dictionary but it can’t buy swagger.”
The same article is just one of many sources to agree that Nicki Minaj’s verse, while still not fantastic, was better than Perry’s bits. It’s definitely more rap than pop, plus it’s cockier and has more of the “cool” factor. Also, as The Daily Beast puts it, “[Nicki’s] insults on this track are miles ahead of Perry’s pee-wee stuff.”
“Pink Ferragamo sliders on deck/Silly rap beefs just get me more checks,” Minaj spits. “Swish swish, aww I got them upset/But my shooters’ll make ’em dance like dubstep/Swish, swish, aww, my haters is obsessed/’Cause I make M’s, they get much less/Don’t be tryna double back/I already despise you/All that fake love you showin’/Couldn’t even disguise you.”
“Not gonna lie Nicki is great on it and basically the only part that doesn’t sound a mess,” tweeted actress Ruby Rose, who admittedly is friends with Taylor Swift.
@ROMANZOLANZSKI Not gonna lie Nicki is great on it and basically the only part that doesn't sound a mess
— Ruby Rose (@RubyRose) May 19, 2017
“The only interesting thing about this song is Nicki’s verse,” chimes in Reddit user Katiealaska. “The other parts just seem kind of boring. Idk there’s just nothing very poignant or memorable about the lyrics and the whole ‘I stay winning’ theme.”
All-in-all, people agree the “Swish Swish” is a disappointing installment in the notorious feud begun five years ago with “Bad Blood” and fails to knock down Taylor Swift like it was meant to. You’ll have to try again, Katy and Nicki.
Some even claim “Swish Swish” is representative or bigger problems in Katy Perry’s career, especially when considered along side “Bon Appetit,” another recent Katy Perry release widely criticized for being oversexualized and just overall not pleasurable to listen to, and “Chained to the Rhythm,” a third unpopular Perry song from last month.
“Katy is a mess with this new album,” writes another Reddit user. “Three songs out and you can tell her new album is gonna be a flop. I’m only wondering, she talked about making purposeful pop, making music about what’s going on in the world and releases a sexual song and song about how she’s winning etc. Katy is a mess even before her album’s out.”
All three of the releases are to be included on Katy Perry’s upcoming album, Witness, which debuts on June 9.
[Featured image by Michael Caulfield/Getty Images for VH1]