Album Review: Jessie J – Who you are

Dominic Preston 19 March 2011

Jessie J – Who you are (Lava Records, 2011)

Track to download: Do it like a dude

There are decent odds that you’ve looked at the score I’ve given this album and assumed that I’m some sort of snooty music fan moaning about Jessie J because of her poppy music, or recent success. I’d like to assure you that this couldn’t be further from the truth. I love pop music. I love popstars. And I actually wanted to love Jessie J too. I just can’t.

I tolerated ‘Do It Like A Dude’, assured by her fans that there was better stuff yet to come. I heard a leaked version of ‘Casualty of Love’, and saw the potential. I admittedly loathed new single ‘Price Tag’, but can you blame me?

The sad truth is that these songs, ranging from passable to rubbish, probably represent the best of Who You Are. The only other songs that come close are ‘Abracadabra’ and ‘Who’s Laughing Now’, which is quite catchy despite its abysmal ‘don’t be hatin’ on me’ lyrics.

The rest of the album shows a half-decent singer buried by rushed production and her own inflated ego. ‘Big White Room’ might be enjoyable if Jessie J hadn’t spent the whole time showing off her fluctuating warbling skills. The album’s nadir must be ‘Mamma Knows Best’, where the synthesized big band backing track simply comes off as a sad Pixie Lott rip-off.

A lot of people have told me that Jessie J is the next Lady Gaga, or that she’s here to save pop music. I really wish it were true, but it just ain’t. Pop music doesn’t need saving, and even if it did, Jessie J would not be the one to do it.

Dominic Preston