Ashlee Simpson: I Am Me

By Collin Quick

Ah, bubblegum pop. The sweet, sweet taste of sugar-coated, gum-based fun mixed with artificial and natural flavors to bring out the snapping sound when cracking the perfect bubble between your teeth. While most flavors embody a unique taste, some are just bad from the get-go.

In an album mixed with second-hand emotions, breakups and betrayal, Ashlee Simpson steals something from just about everyone in the music business today.

Opening with “Boyfriend,” the band immediately rips off a Franz Ferdinand-esque riff and Simpson’s vocals play off Kelly Clarkson’s “Since U Been Gone” screams.

“In Another Life” carries the already-heard form, seeing as the timing structure and vocals come from “Pieces of Me.”

“Beautifully Broken” blatantly steals the guitar intro from Oasis’ “Wonderwall” while “L.O.V.E.” carries a strong Gwen Stefani, been-there, heard-that vibe.

Not to mention the fact when spelling out “love,” the “L” and “O” sounds like Simpson with a bad cockney British accent saying “hello” (think “ello”). Even Liam and Noel Gallagher can say, let alone sing, the word “hello.”

Simpson would have more than likely dubbed “Dancing Alone” “Just Like Heaven” if the title weren’t already taken by the Cure. Thank you Robert Smith for “dancing in the deepest oceans” before Simpson was dancing by herself.

The title track carries an Avril Lavigne sound and offers up the heaviest track to the album, but it still lacks its own sound.

Time to spit this piece of already-been-chewed gum back into its wrapper and toss it away.