Lady Gaga is roaring back.
Mere days after Katy Perry unleashed "Roar" -- the lead single from her upcoming "Prism" album -- the eccentric pop superstar rush-released her own single Monday to YouTube and iTunes, a week earlier than she'd originally planned.
"A POP MUSIC EMERGENCY IS UNDERWAY," she wrote with characteristic drama on her website. "DUE TO HACKERS AN ABUNDANCE OF LOW/HIGH QUALITY LEAKS...WE ISSUE THIS POP MUSIC EMERGENCY...MONSTERS SPREAD THE WORD."
"Applause" is a stomping dance track with little trace of the self-conscious hair-metal stylings that defined 2011's "Born This Way"; it shares more with the sleek Euro-house vibe of Lady Gaga's early hits, including "Poker Face" and "Bad Romance."
But that doesn't mean she's returning to the days before the world followed her every move.
"I live for the applause," Gaga sings over the song's surging synths, "Live for the way that you cheer and scream for me."
"Applause" is the first sampling from Gaga's third album, "ARTPOP," due out Nov. 11, and by early Tuesday it had zoomed to No. 2 on the iTunes singles chart, right behind Perry's "Roar."
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