A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this album is innocuous but boring. We dare your attention span to stay in gear long enough to evaluate these lyrics for appropriateness.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
There was some sweetness, a kind of goofy charm, to Ashlee Simpson's debut album that is completely lacking on her sophomore effort, I AM ME. Starting with the insert photos, in which the young singer seems intent on not cracking a smile, the whole project smacks of humorless self-importance and an absolute deficiency of soul. One reason the album falls flat are the songs themselves -- all co-written by (guess who) Ashlee herself. It's no surprise that a young artist so narcissistic as to title her first two albums Autobiography and I Am Me might come up with songs that portray a particularly self-absorbed world view. Personal revelation can be wonderful when accompanied by compassion; but not as charming when revealed as naked ambition with less than a teaspoonful of talent.
Is it any good?
The appealing musical hooks that keep the CD from drowning are all provided by producer/keyboardist/bassist/guitarist John Shanks, who should get some credit for saving what is savable. But at the end of the day, this much intensity without a drop of generosity or passion gets really boring, really fast.