When I suggested reviewing Sheezus- Lily Allen’s highly anticipated album, following a short-lived “retirement” from music in 2010, after a day of hoping the tracks would grow on me, URL badman was playing. The likelihood of a positive review being weak, my girlfriend pointed out the irony.
Sweet Sheezus- a review of Lily Allen’s new release
I loved Lily Allen from the very start. I asked for her first album Alright Still for my 16th birthday or some other achievement in ’06, after having her MySpace page and the 5 or so available tracks playing on repeat while I sat on MSN messenger back in the day. She was something a bit different and didn’t sing with a fake American accent (something which clearly attracts me, as a huge fan of Kate Nash’s debut album, which I still credit as being one of my favourites of all time.)
I liked most of her subsequent work and was pleased to hear her sweet tones on the 2013 Christmas-time hit that she famously loathes. Excellent plan from her to agree to record Somewhere only we know and not take a profit so that her record label could use what would’ve been her wage to allow her to release Hard out Here from the new album, a single that she knew wouldn’t get much radio play given that most lines contain some kind of obscenity. The feminist tune did alright and left a lot of people (our household included) excited for Sheezus- the title inspired by Kanye West’s most recent album title.
Air balloon was released and didn’t seem to do much, followed shortly by Our Time which is alright (still). I couldn’t help that. Lily was announced as an act for Radio One’s Big Weekend, mid May and this year in Glasgow (hurry up and come to anywhere that I might at least be in with a shot of getting tickets, already!) and as a result seemed to be playing every time I popped into my go kart and flicked on the radio, within a few days I was singing along. So far so good.
Before I continue, let me point out that I really like Lily Allen. She seems fun and down to earth and she likes to be a bit gobby and she called that Katie Hopkins woman with that awesome snap of her looking hot following some put-down about her weight. She’s the kind of woman you’d like to be mates with. When she performed at G-A-Y and was getting stick on Twitter for mocking Queen Bey, she gave as good as she got (and I highly doubt that Beyoncé really gives one, I think she’s on a yacht somewhere with Jay-Z and her adorable small human being and perfect life, this weekend).
So, I was looking forward to the album.
The title track is some kind of open bitch about anyone more successful than Lily (including Beyoncé- calm down, Twitter). Now, why is it that feminists are always so mean to women that aren’t as vocal about the cause? On hearing this song I commented that Lily should have made sure she was on her best game before slagging off these celebs- Katy Perry may be boring, GaGa a martyre but they’re also touring the world, not just the UK circuit with their celeb mates filling much of the space. Maybe I’m missing the point and this is all ironic, which I’m sure will be the line if the album flops.
The other songs are samey and Lily doesn’t do much singing. I’d hoped it might be an album that grew on you, and admittedly it’s catchy. But I just think it’s very try hard. And it’s a shame.
Lily; you’ve misjudged the market this time….