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Jessica Simpson - A Public Affair

Jessica Simpson, A Public Affair

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 1.5 out of 5

THE best thing that can be said for listening to Jessica Simpson’s latest album, A Public Affair is that there’s some fun to be had in imagining what the videos might be like.

But in all other respects, it’s a very laboured listen indeed; a mostly wretched pop confection that actually makes Girls Aloud seem sophisticated.

Assembled with the help of producers like Scott Storch, it’s a lightweight effort in every sense and almost feels half-hearted in places.

The second track, for instance, is a cover version – and not a good one at that (You Spin Me Round (Like A Record)). Yet it hardly shows faith in one’s own material to be parading it so early into the album.

Opening effort and title track is also the former single. It’s designed as a breezy musical “homage” to Madonna’s Holiday. Yet of all the tracks in the Madonna back catalogue worth paying tribute to, why choose the one that sounds the most dated?

The rest of the album drifts from drippy, sweet ballads to pop influenced booty shakers with varying degrees of limited success.

If You Were Mine, for instance, feels like an awful ’80s hybrid of songs from Roxette and Five Star, while Walkin’ Round In A Circle aims for Sugababes-style sincerity but falls some way short.

The album “rallies” briefly on disco-influenced tracks such as Swing With Me and Push Your Tush – the former drawing on big band, jazz and swing instruments to lend it a livelier vibe perfectly suited to showcasing Simpson’s dancing prowess in the inevitable video.

While the ’70s Carwash vibe of Push Your Tush will probably go down well on the mainstream dance circuit and, again, seems tailor-made for a raunchy video (especially with cowgirl references! The mind boggles).

But such moments offer brief respites from the general tedium of attempting to wade through the number of duff tracks.

In all other respects, Simpson’s latest offering is an utterly depressing experience. Wait for the DVD and watch with the volume turned down.

Track listing:

  1. A Public Affair
  2. You Spin Me Round (Like A Record)
  3. B.O.Y.
  4. If You Were Mine
  5. Walkin’ ‘Round In A Circle
  6. The Lover In Me
  7. Swing With Me
  8. Push Your Tush
  9. Back To You
  10. Between You & I
  11. I Don’t Want To Care
  12. Fired Up
  13. Let Him Fly
  14. I Belong To Me
  15. These Boots Are Made For Walking [Bonus Track]
  16. A Public Affair [Video]