Katy Perry's fifth album Witness is due in less than a month. Following the release of "Chained to the Rhythm" and the Migos collab "Bon Appétit" earlier this year, Perry dropped the Nicki Minaj-featuring single "Swish Swish" Friday, complete with artwork showing receipts from the compellingly named Karma Coffee & Tea. According to the receipts, the tea at this establishment is quite affordable:
Taking these receipts into consideration, fans' lyrical dissection of "Swish Swish" appears to have landed on a consensus: the song really sounds like it's about Taylor Swift. And Nicki's contributions? They really sound like they're about Remy Ma.
In the first verse, Perry tells a mystery listener (Swift?) "Don't you come for me" and makes a noteworthy reference to a sheep:
A tiger don't lose no sleep
Don't need opinions from a shellfish or a sheep
Don't you come for me
In a now classic tweet from 2014, Perry warned the planet of "the Regina George in sheep's clothing." Given the timing of that tweet, which arrived a day after a certain Rolling Stone interview, many assumed the Regina George in question was none other than Taylor Swift.
Frequent Swift defender Ruby Rose all but confirmed on Twitter that "Swish Swish" was penned with a certain someone in mind. Interestingly, Rose's tweets also included a Mean Girls nod.
Swift's so-so 2014 track "Bad Blood," despite no confirmation from Swift herself, is widely considered to be about Katy Perry. As reported by TMZ shortly after the release of Swift's 1989, the feud between the two allegedly has quite a bit to do with the fact that a few of Swift's tour dancers "jumped ship" and joined Perry's tour.
Like Perry, Minaj refrains from explicitly mentioning anyone by name during her "Swish Swish" moments. Instead, Minaj spends her verse laughing at "obsessed" haters and "silly rap beefs" that only help her bottom line. Given Rose's tweets and the exchange of disses that occurred earlier this year, at least one of the "silly rap beefs" in question is presumably Minaj vs. Ma.
Regardless of the actual inspiration behind "Swish Swish," Perry's album is out next month and here we are talking about one of its singles in great detail. Well played.
Check the full "Swish Swish" lyrics over at Genius, then get into the song that played right after it on Apple Music's Hot Tracks playlist.