Britney Spears’ “Perfume”: Review Revue

While almost every pop diva is twirling around to the (soon to be dated as all f***) EDM squelches and squiggles ‘neath their own output, leave it to Britney Spears to hand us a ballad in the lead-up to her eighth album Britney Jean (out December 3). Oh, sure, Britney’s just as fond of said squiggles — a two-second listen to recent drag queen credo “Work Bitch” underscores that point. But “Perfume” at least feels a smidge like counter-programming upon looking at the dancefloor-friendly charts these days.

Head below to see a roundup of the words The Internet sprayed out as a reaction to Spears’ fragrant new single.

:: Entertainment Weekly labels the slow number “an angsty ballad in the vein of Spears’ ‘Everytime’ or ‘Don’t Let Me Be the Last to Know’.”

:: SPIN notes of “Perfume” that it “happily, goes a long way closer to the album title’s here’s-the-real-Britney implications: Produced by and co-written by Spears and Sia, it’s still the type of slickly crafted electro-pop that won’t exactly reshape Top 40 radio, but it’s also a power ballad of romantic longing.”

:: Billboard says the single “allows Spears to momentarily discard the confident exterior of ‘Work Bitch’ and express vulnerability over ‘paranoid’ feelings about her romantic interest.”

:: Music And Lyrics cautiously states, “Certainly, I can feel Britney’s sincerity on ‘Perfume’ from her beautiful and passionate singing. Although, I’m going to need to check the songwriting credits of the song, so I can totally buy it.”

:: HitFix quips, “Spears’ singing is as strong as it has ever been here (let the guessing begin on how much it was doctored in the studio) and this is the best song she’s done in years. Plus, given how successful Spears’ several lines of cologne are, we can only imagine the tie ins planned between song and the scents.  Let the cross-branding begin!”

:: MuuMuse enthusiastically writes the following: “It’s an absolutely beautiful song. And while Britney may never release a ballad quite as devastating and raw as In The Zone‘s ‘Everytime; again (what could match the heartbreak of a lost first love?), this is certainly one of the best, most mature ballads she’s done since.”

:: Chart Rigger offers, “Don’t look for the track, a ballad, to raise any bars or break any ceilings other than those in Spears’ own world. Still, it’s a pleasant enough song that, compared to the limp number it’s following up, shows some promise for Britney’s eighth outing.”

:: Finally, PopJustice (probably) accurately projects, “…’Work Bitch’ seemed like a 9 on a couple of listens but swiftly fell to a still-respectable 7 due mainly to poor structure and pacing, but ‘Perfume’ feels like an 8 that could end up as a 9, wouldn’t you say?”

Agree with any of the above? Have your own thoughts on “Perfume”? Let us know below, or by hitting us up on Facebook and Twitter.

  • Sean

    Honestly, I think it’s atrocious. A truly painful listen. Vocally and lyrically.

    • Jonasbrit Fernandes

      Hope your ears hurt. ;)

    • mike


    • Mÿkië ŁewiŃsky

      cry your eyes out of your head

  • Marina

    I’m with popJustice… Work B*tch is way underwhelming, not a personal track at all, as she claimed it would be her most personal album ever. It’s a catchy-club-dance song though, but didn’t and won’t buy it. On the other hand, Perfume is a sincere ballad, that showcases Brits vulnerablility and a little bit more vocal talent. I’m shipping this one ;)

  • AngelouLoves

    i like the song.. it’s definitely her most mature ballad. and i commend her for taking the risk of doing a ballad and letting go of her failsafe formula of doing EDM to make hits

    • mike

      It is only risky because she doesn’t have ballad-ready-vocals.

      • blaackeagle

        She HAS vocals to sing ballads.

  • carlos

    I’m totally a Britney stan and it hurts to say it but, this song is not good. I don’t know where are the big vocals and the emotion everybody is hearing. This is the worst ballad she’s ever released. And her singing in the line that says “Is there still longing there?” …sounds terrible and hard to listen to. I’m very upset about this. First, Work Bitch flopped because of a reason nobody seems to notice: it just doesn’t have a chorus. Just like Ooh La La didn’t have a chorus and flopped too. Hold It Against Me didn’t have a chorus either but somehow managed to be a hit. That ugly album cover and Perfume make me think Britney Jean is going to be a disappointment, not that I’d be surprised because we all know is the executive producer.

    • Mÿkië ŁewiŃsky

      work bitch had a bad radio edit too though.. ”you better work , work”

  • Mÿkië ŁewiŃsky

    loved it, she sounds great, and i cant think of a song with the same meaning .. im sure there are some.. im just saying its not a dime a dozen song… and she sounds great, super great !

  • Holly

    This song is so boring that whenever it plays on the radio I have to change the station, and I am furious when it gets stuck in my head because the lyrics are so unbelievably bad. “Mark my territory?” I cringe. Rule number one of a good song is that it should not inspire the image of dogs peeing onto trees. The perfume analogy really isn’t very clever either. It doesn’t even make sense. So is she over-spraying herself with perfume so that he can’t think of the other girl, or so the other girl will smell it? That’s too much perfume then, and everyone suffers. These are not questions I should be pondering while listening to a song.