After a delayed-then-shelved album (“Problématique”), a Grammy Award (“Unholy”) and a high-profile magazine cover (“Sports Illustrated Swimsuit”), Kim Petras has delivered the debut release fans have clamored for since hearing dance-pop earworms “I Don’t Want it All” and “Heart to Break” more than five years ago.
“Feed the Beast” arrives Friday after a handful of mix tapes and EPs introduced the German-bred Petras, 30, to club playlists with an intoxicating mesh of techno-disco-goth-house music.
Previous singles “Brrr,” “Coconuts” and “Unholy”(also on co-star’s Sam Smith’s “Gloria” album) appear among the 15 tracks, which have been crafted by an assembly of international songwriters and producers including Canada’s Cirkut and Mathieu Jomphe-Lepine, Sweden’s Max Martin and ILYA and familiar American names Dr. Luke (a frequent collaborator) and Banks (who co-wrote and guests on “Bait”).
Petras, openly transgender since her teens, will embark on a world tour starting in Texas in September to support “Feed the Beast.”
Here are five highlights from the brisk album (only three songs exceed three minutes).
‘I was very, very angry’:Kelly Clarkson gets candid about how her divorce influenced new album, ‘Chemistry’
‘Alone’ featuring Nicki Minaj
The prominent sample of Alice Deejay’s 1999 Euro-thumper “Better Off Alone” would have been noteworthy enough. But toss in a fierce rap from Minaj, who reminds us that she “sets trends from Queens to Beijing,” and a fluctuating cadence and it’s impossible not to be intrigued.
‘King of Hearts’
From the sprint of synths paired with a killer opening line – “I met you one night on the corner of a bad decision/When my eyes locked with yours it felt just like a fast collision” – the song is an ambush of energy. A staccato chorus makes clear that Petras is no fool (“One day you’re gonna wake up and you’ve got no one”) as she romps with her head held high.
Though it starts as a pedestrian dance track, the song quickly evolves into a rave up, insistent and urging as the melody slithers. It’s destined to commandeer the clubs this summer.
‘Hit it From the Back’
One of three tracks from the scrapped Problématique” (joining “Revelations” and “Sex Talk”), “Hit it” doesn’t get bogged down in euphemisms as Petras frankly declares what she wants “in the back of the car, under the stars.” Co-written with Ester Dean (Katy Perry’s “Firework,” Kelly Clarkson’s “Mr. Know It All”), the song isn’t a lyrical marvel, but there is something mesmerizing about its clip-clop beat and Petras’ sultry vocals.