Today, Britney Spears announced the forthcoming arrival of her studio album, Glory, slated to drop August 26 on Apple Music. While the thought of summer ’16 wrapping with Spears’ full-length sounds great, her lead single, “Make Me,” and official artwork have both felt lifeless, like repeatedly hitting the snooze button with looming fear that the next alarm won’t wake us up at all. There’s pressure for this new era to make right of all Britney Jean’s wrongs, but everything thus far looks pretty grim.
You’d assume one of the world’s biggest pop stars would have the creative network and financial backing to piece together the most next-level album artwork—something without typeface seemingly downloaded straight from DaFont.com and a hazy portrait that looks lazily cropped in from a much larger image. The entire visual, to be quite honest, looks like a reject from the 2011 Femme Fatale album shoot. We hoped for something iconic, not because we’re holding Spears to unrealistic expectations, but because she’s done it before. (Remember Blackout’s bedazzled fedora? Iconic).
In terms of content, however, Glory does have some hope, including the magic of contributing songwriter duo Justin Tranter and Julia Michaels, who’re together responsible for mega-hits from Justin Bieber’s “Sorry” to Selena Gomez’s “Hands to Myself.” The pair has been on a winning streak this year, so it’s likely they’ve packed Glory with even more emotive radio-charting standouts—just what Spears needs to redeem this artwork that looks like it was created by some freshman design student (fans agree and BULLETT co-signs this petition).