Most of the tracks were produced and co-written by punk band Rancid singer and guitarist Tim Armstrong, whom Pink met through a mutual friend at a Transplants video shoot. The two hit it off and Pink ended up co-writing ten songs with him in a week when Transplants were on a tour with the Foo Fighters. Eight of these tracks appeared on Try This, which also features three songs written with Linda Perry, who co-wrote much of Missundaztood (2001), Pink's second album. The album includes a collaboration with electroclash artist Peaches, "Oh My God", and Pink's contribution to the Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle film soundtrack, "Feel Good Time" (produced by and featuring William Orbit), as a non-U.S. bonus track.
Try This was Pink's final studio album under Arista Records. In 2006, Pink said that she was unhappy with the way the label wanted her to make an album after the success of M!ssundaztood. "I was kind of rebelling against the label on that one," she said. "I was going: 'You want a record? Fine, I'll write 10 songs in a week for your fuckin' record and you can press it up and put it out.'" She described the promotional campaign for the album as "an awful time. I was walking out of half my interviews crying. I just felt they were putting a quarter in the slot to watch the monkey dance."
The album received mainly positive reviews from critics with an average Metacritic rating of 71, indicating generally positive reviews. However, there were some negative reviews, with New York magazine stating "Pink pitches a brand of seriousness that is pure Lifetime-TV mawkishness", and The Guardian commented that "Like a lot of pop at the moment, it just sounds like a wan imitation of Pink's second album". Entertainment Weekly gave the album a positive review and called it "A hooky, engaging throwaway that expands Pink's range while holding on fiercely to her irascible inner child."
Try This debuted at number nine on the U.S. Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 147,000 copies, a weaker debut than that of Missundaztood. The album also reached the top ten on album charts in the UK, Canada and Australia. As of March 2007, it had sold 719,000 copies in the U.S. according to Nielsen SoundScan.Try This re-entered the Australian album chart in June 2009.
The album's first single, "Trouble", a song Armstrong original wrote for his band Rancid in 2003, reached number two in Canada and the top ten in the UK and Australia, but it peaked only at number 68 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. In 2003, "Catch Me While I'm Sleeping" was issued as a promotional single in the U.S.; in the same period, a promo CD-R acetate of "Humble Neighborhoods" was made available in the UK. Follow-up single "God Is a DJ" failed to chart on the Hot 100, although it reached number 11 in the UK. A third single, "Last to Know", was released exclusively in Europe and peaked at 21 in the UK.