Ashlee Simpson
I Am Me

Reviewed by: Josh Timmermann
Reviewed on: 2005-10-26

Posted 10/26/2005 - 07:01:01 AM by TheBrad:
 Just wanted to say... OH SHIT HERE IT COMES
Posted 10/26/2005 - 07:33:22 AM by bj_randolph:
 I am genuinely alarmed at how listenable this album is. Almost every song is good (though that reggae one could've found a suitable home on the cutting room floor), and a few are downright terrific (how you wrote that entire review without mentioning the guitar riff in "Dancing Alone" is beyond me). So is there any worthwhile guitar rock on the pop charts right now NOT being made by teenage girls? At this point my "Most Anticipated Next Album" list is topped by Avril. With a bullet.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 07:58:34 AM by KlausFraktal:
Posted 10/26/2005 - 08:42:02 AM by edwardo:
 I really enjoy this record too. "Dancing Alone" is like Gwen Stefani's "Cool", except while the Gwen is great, but also kind of crap, "Dancing Alone" is just great. And, obscure, yes, but "In Another Life" is so close to forgotten Canadian group Artificial Joy Club's single "Skywriting" that it could easily be a lawsuit in the makings. Anyway, well done Ashlee's writers and producers, please make an album with Courtney Love k thx bye.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 10:56:55 AM by downloadsofist:
 Would you pay $15 for this album?
Posted 10/26/2005 - 11:10:58 AM by badhaircut:
 Being twelve must be awesome.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 11:18:07 AM by acid_puppy:
 my god, what is wrong with you people? Not even the mainstream media is praising this album. Stylus trying too hard for 100 alex.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 11:26:16 AM by bj_randolph:
 'fist brings up an interesting point here. Personally, I probably wouldn't pay $15 for it. I don't pay that much for anything unless it's on vinyl, which I doubt this one is, and even then I probably wouldn't.

But I didn't steal it, I listened to a stream of it on Rhapsody, a subscription-based digital music service. Does this mean I don't really like it? I don't think so, not if I listen to it repeatedly (which I have). Before downloadable music I never would have heard it and, as Timmerman points out, my loss. For me, this album is one example of how digital music has broadened my tastes, and I'm glad for it.

I don't think it cheapens a recommendation at all; rather, I think the would-you-pay-for-it argument no longer applies. Music criticism no longer has any function as a buyers' guide, as it did on the past. If you're reading this, you have access to a computer, and the music is there for you to hear regardless of whether you choose to pay for it.

The bottom line here is that this site has given some positive reviews to some pretty disposable music lately, and been lambasted for it in the comments section by readers who admit that they haven't listened to the album and have no intention of doing so (q.v. Josh Love's praise for Kelly Osbourne's latest and the subsequent firestorm of derision). I say these people no longer have an excuse: music is now easier to hear than ever, so listen and decide for yourself.

Posted 10/26/2005 - 11:30:38 AM by bj_randolph:
 I'd also like to add, re: the lip-synching controversy, that if you've seen that clip of her performing in the halftime show of some bowl game last January (Orange?), then you know she's better off miming to the tapes. More credit to her producers I suppose. If you've ever heard a live recording of the Stone Roses you know what a technical wizerd John Leckie must be, as well.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 11:31:27 AM by bj_randolph:
 excuse me, "wizard"
Posted 10/26/2005 - 11:35:40 AM by Zarklephaser:
 Ashlee Simpson > MF Doom and Danger Mouse. Keep talking out of your ass, Stylus. It's really funny on the outside.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 12:42:51 PM by downloadsofist:
 sure, now music costs time, not money. it sounds like this is worth the investment. i was just curious.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 01:40:52 PM by ckramer:
 is it cool to be antagonistic? granted that the new stylus attitude of "we don't care, we're so above you pretenious readers" makes it fun to comment here but my issue here is that i can't take this review as geniune. I take it as a "fuck you" to the idea of good music and sincerely appreciating music as more that good time ear-candy (i listen to alot of ear candy but this is different..) is the reviewer being serious when he says that autobiography is "a near-perfect collection of songs" or is he baiting people to bitch. I've heard autobiography i don't understand how anyone could make that claim and i am first and foremost of lover of mainstream pop music. my first loves were phil and ronnie spector and brian wilson and little richard, now i love annie and m.i.a. i have nothing against pop music. my beef here is that the reviewer is either smuggly effing with us or praising music i find to be shallowly designed, made without any earnest or any attempts at thoughtfulness. it's clear with one listen of ashlee simpson's records that she doesn't even like music. i understand there are so many arguements against what i am trying to say but all i'm trying to do is ask for some sincerity. and if you sincerely think autobiography is a pop classic ( i haven't heard this release) then i just can't really connect to where you are coming from.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 01:48:54 PM by ckramer:
 one more thing, if stylus desires to blur the dividing lines of music, ie: the indie, mainstream borders , then i suggest even further opening your horizons more to different cultures (i've seen a little of this but i'd like to read more) more genres more reissues from smaller more specific labels (norton, numero group, archeaphone to name a few) because when you just throw in some country and britney records in with the "indie scene" it makes you guys look like you're trying to be jerks.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 01:55:16 PM by Giantandre:
 My fav. part of the review ..."when I caught her live last year..." Priceless ... That's more than 15 bucks....
Posted 10/26/2005 - 02:05:27 PM by ckramer:
 on second thought, this IS a funny review satire or not.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 02:10:09 PM by jhitting:
 It's not fair to Ashlee Simpson fans to put commas in your article. Shame on you, JT (wait...Justin Timberlake?) for confusing everyone.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 02:13:32 PM by J_R_K_:
 the end is nigh.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 03:48:11 PM by BeingaBunny:
 ooooh yall gotta get this album asap. its up there with micropones "the glow pt2," broken social scene "you forgot it in peeps," animal collective "dong dungs," and hood "warm house." ashlee simpson is the female david bowie of our genearation and im for one proud that she si an wonderful american woman and a beautiful girlly. god bless preacher simpson for his onederful raising of tehese childeren, ashloo and jessican seimpson.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 04:05:50 PM by J_R_K_:
 i heard this makes manic street preachers' "holy bible" look like king james' "holy bible". ouch!
Posted 10/26/2005 - 04:35:00 PM by IanMathers:
 I can understand loving pop and disagreeing with fans of Ashlee Simpson, ckramer. I'm not sure I follow the leap where anyone who disagrees is possibly fucking with you, though. As far as I know all reviews on Stylus are genuine, and if there's a counter-example exists in our archive I'm pretty sure it's much more obviously snarky than this is.

And by the way, love them or hate them, M.I.A. and Annie aren't mainstream pop. Not in North America, anyways.

Posted 10/26/2005 - 07:14:50 PM by MusicNotSee:
 For the most part i agree with Zarklephaser Two words for the cover though: Cleave. Age.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 07:58:13 PM by JohnCameron:
 And we've hit the popist wall.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 08:34:07 PM by TheBrad:
 MusicNotSee brings up an important aspect that was not covered in the review. Stylus regrets the error.

(shudder) Annie's just as guilty a pleasure as Simpson, anyway, for those of you who still subscribe to the "guilty pleasure" concept. ckramer's got a point about the other-lands stuff, but a Finnish album was highlighted a few weeks back and teh comments = "huh?" The metal reviews are consistently a treat, but a lot of us seem to wait for triple-A indie bands we know so's we can get our pats on the head for downloading it.

Zarks, I gotta say for what should be the last time: Stylus doesn't have an editorial stance on records. Neither does it have an editorial stance on looking cool by embracing teen-pop. You gotta trust me on this. It can't all be Shins 'n' Radiohead. I think I'd kill myself. Anyway, that stuff is just as mainstream on these parts of the interweb.

Oh, and I'm guessing I'd give this album a C- at best, just based on two songs, c'est la vie. It's obvious Timmbaland feels strongly about this record, and he gave a A+ to M.I.A., a B+ to Neko Case et al, so do with that what you will.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 08:46:24 PM by wmdavidson:
 God, I am loving this backlash. I even saw the word "sincerity" pop up. Next we'll be bandying rusty old words like "authenticity" and "meaning" around. Up against the wall, popism, your revolution is over! :)
Posted 10/26/2005 - 09:07:17 PM by KlausFraktal:
 Well, I just listened to 'Boyfriend' via the Flash Ad they have on PopMatters and so, for the rest of you, I can confirm that it does, in fact, suck a whole lotta ass.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 09:25:40 PM by blood_ambition:
 I can't take this review seriously because he misspelled "poseur."
Posted 10/26/2005 - 10:43:58 PM by BeingaBunny:
 hi ashelee, if u r reading this i think u r a relly kewl artist and very pretty i was wonderring what inspires you thx bye xoxoxoxo
Posted 10/27/2005 - 01:39:59 AM by jonathan:
 I think y'all are protesting too much. I can understand being pissed off about the popism when the review consists of little more than telling us how bad bands with guitars are, i.e "Tatu are good because they're better at being gay than Franz Ferdinand" but there's no problem in recognizing that pre-fab artists can make good music. Boyfriend is a great single and Autobiography was a good (not great) album. This review is the best sort of approach for evaluating pop music. It would be far preferable if more reviewers did this instead of that "I like the new Backstreet Boys record because the Pixies suck" sort of thing you see so often.
Posted 10/27/2005 - 02:51:34 AM by Neo_Vincent:
 I want that man's drugs.
Posted 10/27/2005 - 09:15:30 AM by cleric:
 Strange thing is i didn't know that she released a new album yet. Seems like geffen aren't doing much promotion are they? Anyways continue this way Stylus, i really like to read the comments of all these pissed off indie poseur kids ;D
Posted 10/27/2005 - 12:06:25 PM by KlausFraktal:
 Why is it that popist elitists always resort to personal attacks, name-calling, and hypocritical accusations of 'elitism'? I suppose it's because they can't muster a valid defense of the crap they call art...
Posted 10/28/2005 - 10:38:21 PM by proffokker:
 1. What do people mean when they say "popist"? I'm genuinely asking? 2. Haven't heard the album yet, but I will say that, yes, it is entirely possible for prefab popsters to make good music. Like the Sex Pistols, for instance.
Posted 10/29/2005 - 01:31:40 AM by ckramer:
 annie isn't mainstream you're right. but m.i.a. is. and will be even more after her opening spot for gwen stefani. my sister has seen m.i.a on both mtv and vh1 and the high school girls she teaches dance to like her. pretty much everyone exposed to mia likes her. she's not as big a missy or pink yet, but she could be.
Posted 10/29/2005 - 08:27:13 PM by clem_bastow:
 OH MY GOD! If you tiresome indie bores would rather we cream ourselves about Deerhoof et al, go grab a tube sock and imagine that. A. GOD. ALBUM. IS. A. GOOD. ALBUM. Whether it's by Ashlee Simpson or Sun Ra. DEAL WITH IT!! Kthx.
Posted 11/04/2005 - 01:13:29 PM by JTjunkie:
 Who cares about the review... I'm all about the writer. <3 Well, the review was good. Ashlee is hot.
Posted 01/01/2006 - 07:58:11 AM by MC_Tatsujin:
 COMING BACK FOR MORE is worth getting the album for.