Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
UK pressing of the teen queen's 2008 album featuring three bonus tracks: 'Invisible', 'Pieces Of Me' and 'Boyfriend'. Bittersweet World is the third studio album by singer Ashlee Simpson. She worked on the album with pro... more »
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UK pressing of the teen queen's 2008 album featuring three bonus tracks: 'Invisible', 'Pieces Of Me' and 'Boyfriend'. Bittersweet World is the third studio album by singer Ashlee Simpson. She worked on the album with producers Timbaland, Chad Hugo, and Kenna. It has been described by Simpson as a "fun party album" with a "silly and quirky" side and some influence from 1980s music. She describes it as having a more beat-oriented sound than her first two albums, Autobiography and I Am Me, although still retaining some of those albums' guitar-based sound. Polydor.
Josephll | CET | 04/22/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Ashlee Simpson is a typical product of pop culture, she' not a particularly talented vocalist nor trendsetting artist (rather trend searching), but she's Jessica Simpsons little sister and if you ever watch MTV or read celebrity tabloids you'll know who she is, atleast by name. But apart from her older sister who's actually a good singer sticking to catchy pop songs and classic ballads, Ashlee is a rebel. She always did the opposite of her sister to not end up in her shadow, on her 2004 debut album Autobiography we found her doing a pop/rock take closer to Pink and Avril Lavigne then anything. The end result was positive reviews and big hit single with "Pieces of Me" that actually was more succesful then the singles her sister came out with that year. But then at a saturday night live performence disaster stroke when Ashlee was found lipsynching. Critics were fast to question her vocal capacity and she ended up feeling humiliated. Therefor her sophmore album I Am Me was a U-turn with much harder, more rock oriented themes but less hooky or entertaining. While the album still went platinum and a couple of singles went fine on the charts, it was a dissapointing and it didn't recieve alot of good words from critics. Considering Ashlee is known for switching trends as often as Liz Taylor switched husbands it ain't too surprising that her third album "Bittersweet World" is as diffrent as her sophmore was from her debut. This time around she hooks up with superproducers Timbaland and Chad Hugo (The other part of the Neptunes) and their proteges Jim Beanz and Kenna and she adapts a sound that settles between Avril Lavigne and Gwen Stefani. It actually isn't a bad pairing this time since the sound is both fresh and modern and it suits her much better then what we heard on the dissapointhing "I Am Me" album.
On "Bittersweet World" the good moments are many and the bad one's few, it doesn't neccessary mean that Ashlee suddenly became an improved singer but she's in an enviroment that she's more comfortable with and it's also more fun and memorable songs during this album. First single and song, the Timbaland assisted "Outta My Head (Ay Ya Ya)" is an excellent number. It's trendy, funny, cathcy and crazy at the same time but thus far it failed to become a hit. Hugo isn't worse with the next song "Boys", not to be mistaken with the Britney Spears song. This is a midtempo pop/rock song with Ashlee singing in seductive style. Infact she sounds alot like Gwen Stefani here but this one is really good on it's own merit. "Rule Breaker" could've been for Gwen aswell but the production is harder, with guitars instead of synths and feels more rock then pop, but catchy just the same. "No Time For Tears" is Hugo's second song and it's noted for brilliant spacy production with a touch of new wave rock. Second single "Little Miss Obsessive", another intensive pop/rock song with sing-a-long hook is one of only two songs not from Timbo or Hugo. "Ragdoll" sounds a little like "Outta My Head" but it got chinesesque beats, once again it's catchy and hooky pop/rock. The title track is good cause it feature some social commentary and another good hook while "What I've Become" follows the trend of good material. "Hot Stuff" sound almost exactlly like No Doubt's "Hella Good", not too surprising that Neptunes produced both. "Murder" feature good sound and hook aswell and a verse from some guy that sounds like Timbaland. The closer "Never Dream Alone" on the other hand is a slow ballad, that doesn't fit in here, but her last album also ended with a simular song.
Overall, This almost feels like a rebirth or atleast a revenge cause this album got anything that fits Ashlee's rebelish personality and it couldn't be more suitable that a person that is just as famous for being a tabloid celebrity then she is for being a regular pop/rock singer. Most songs are fun and trendy and the album is cohesive like a train track. Once and for all, Ashlee's music should be un-pretentious, easygoing and playful and that's what it is here. This is her best album so far and I can only give my compliments to anyone involved in this project. Recommended.
Firing on both octaves
Amanda Richards | Georgetown, Guyana | 05/04/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Ashlee Simpson's third album is a collection of pop/dance tracks sleekly produced by the "popular guys" like Timbaland and Chad Hugo. To her credit, Simpson co-wrote all the songs on the album, and barring any lip-syncing accidents, it should do just fine.
Not the strongest of vocalists, Simpson relies on dance beats and catchy choruses, a prime example being first single "Outta My Head (Ay Ya Ya)" which has both. A better song that's a little more Avril Lavigne pop/rock-y is the second single "Little Miss Obsessive", which is about a break-up for which reconciliation isn't quite out of the question.
"Boys" is a funny upbeat track, while "Rule Breaker" sounds like something intended for Gwen Stefani, as does "Ragdoll". "Hot Stuff" is another funny dance track, and you won't be able to resist the disco beat. "Murder" has an interesting Eastern vibe which partially makes up for lyrics. The album ends with the simple and unimpressive ballad "Never Dream Alone", but the weakest track in every way is the title track, sorry to say.
Completely and thoroughly mainstream pop, get this one just for the fun of it.
Amanda Richards, May 3, 2008
Detailed review - 1 and a half stars
Lauren Magnussen | 04/29/2008
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Let me preface this by stating that I like Ashlee Simpson's music. I am not a reviewer that dislikes her just because she is Ashlee Simpson. I like her music because it is fun; I take it at face value and don't give her any more credit other than the fact that she is a neat entertainer that churns out some pretty good pop songs.
In that vein, this album was a huge disappointment. I now understand why this project had been pushed back and so many different release dates were given until its arrival. Let's start from the outside and then in. The cover art, while promising, was a letdown. The inside is nothing to brag about - mediocre photography that has no artistic value coupled with the lyrics made for a very banal and boring booklet. It felt uninspired and rushed. But that is just superficial, right? No. Album artwork is crucial to the overall design and feel of music. It isn't called "art" for nothing.
Still, I had my hopes up that the music would satisfy. Unfortunately, the two best tracks were themselves the singles. "Outta My Head" and "Little Miss Obsessive" have a good vibe, and they are easy to listen to, and, yes, catchy. "Ragdoll" is annoyingly similar to a song on a previous album, entitled "La La." The concept is very much the same, although the melody is different. Three songs on this album are also alike (and not in a good way) - they can be missed. They are "Boys", "Rule Breaker", and "Hot Stuff." The current that runs through them is, essentially, the fact that Ashlee Simpson loves to talk about Ashlee Simpson's other-worldly hotness. One of these types of songs would be nice. Three is overkill and grating to the listener, who quickly gets tired of hearing how Simpson is so hot. Not only is she attractive, she is also hardcore. According to Simpson, she is a "black sleep because [I] like to sleep late." This is just one of many examples of how shallow and puzzling many of the lyrics are. The rest of the tracks are also missable - bits such as "No Time for Tears", "Never Dream Alone", and "Bittersweet World" all sound alike and don't have much to make them interesting or listenable.
All in all, I wish I could go back and time and not pay $15 for this CD. I would much rather have bought the two singles off of iTunes - it would have been cheaper and more satisfying. I recommend readers of this review do the same. I know I am not the only one of her fans that thinks this album was lackluster and trite. One would hope that some of the aspects would make up for another - for instance, the lyrics would make up for the cover art or the melodies would make up for the lyrics. None of this occurs. Major disappointment."