It's Not Me, It's You
I had never heard any of Lily Allen's songs until "The Fear," the first single off of It's Not Me, It's You, was released in January. I was hooked instantly; I could hardly wait until the U.S. release date for this album.
Lily Allen doesn't disappoint. She has just the right combination of angry femme, biting social commentary, and humor, paired with a talent for musical arrangement, to make this album a keeper. Part of what makes the album so strong is that you can literally feel how much of herself Allen has put into it; indeed, she told reporters that she feared her own family's reaction to the record. "Everyone's At It" makes not-so-veiled references to a family that stays up past dawn using drugs and taking their children along for the ride, and "Back to the Start" is a heartfelt apology to Allen's estranged older sister, whom she acknowledges "will always be the taller and the prettier one." "The Fear" is a sharp jab at female consumerism. In "Fuck You," Allen minces no words when telling a neo-conservative guy where to go. The beauty of that song, in particular, is that she pairs harsh lyrics ("it's people like you/who need to get slew") with a pitch and tone that is reminiscent of a bubbly 1940s radio commercial.
Although Allen verbally slices up men who have obviously irritated the shit out of her: "Oh I lie her in the wet patch/in the middle of the bed/I'm feeling pretty damn hard done by/I've spent hours giving head" (from "Not Fair). She hints in other songs, like "Chinese," that she wouldn't mind a bit of domestic bliss.
What's not to love?