Saturday, August 15, 2009

Jessie James - Jessie James

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Sometimes I do things I'm not particularly proud of. Agreeing to watch Confessions Of A Shopaholic isn't one of them (regardless of the, ahem, reasons), but the soundtrack of that said movie did introduce me to Jessie James, through the track Blue Jeans. It was the kind of sassy, sexy pop tune that grabs my attention from time to time and made me anxious to check out more from where that came.

Well, I had to wait for a while, but finally James' debut album has hit the airwaves and despite some suggestions that James can be classified as a "country" singer this is a straight up pop album all the way (as evidenced by the Katy Perry co-writes on two tracks).

Opener Wanted sounds very much like Christina Aguillera, but thankfully like one of her better songs, whilst second track Bullet (one of the Katy Perry's) is everything a great pop song could be. It's catchy, slightly odd (the use of a banjo, for instance) and very difficult to get out of your head once you've listened to it once. In the space of three minutes it also seems to sum up what James is aiming for. And whilst "is that a gun in your pocket or are you just happy to see me" is certainly a cliche is strikes a playful note that adds to the entertainment on show.

The "country" element does, I suppose, show up on the delightfully slinky, almost Nashville Rap style, My Cowboy, whilst the likes of Big Mouth and Burn It Up are the kinds of songs that Pussycat Dolls would kill for (and no doubt take to the top of the charts for weeks).

Ok, so as is almost a prerequisite these days, the album sinks when there's some demographic-grabbing ballads and the album certainly starts better than it ends, but for a good two-thirds or so this really is a special pop album, packed full of catchy hits-in-the-making.

Of course it's easy to be cynical about things like this, and there would seem to be little doubt that Jessie James is shamelessly aiming for pop-superstardom but this cracker of an album should surely help her get there.

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