Graduated from High School Musical and on the eve of her 24th birthday, Ashley Tisdale is ready to act like an adult, or at least not like a tween, on her second album, Guilty Pleasure. The title is a giveaway to Ashley's pop aspirations, the cover an indication of her Britney Blackout makeover, the album a curious hodge-podge of every young ...Read MoreGraduated from High School Musical and on the eve of her 24th birthday, Ashley Tisdale is ready to act like an adult, or at least not like a tween, on her second album, Guilty Pleasure. The title is a giveaway to Ashley's pop aspirations, the cover an indication of her Britney Blackout makeover, the album a curious hodge-podge of every young starlet of the last few years of the decade, both big and small, good and bad. Britney, in her post-K-Fed incarnation, is naturally at the foundation, but Ashley also incorporates Ashlee Simpson's junkie-wannabe rock, Katy Perry's provocative stomp, Fergie's trashy club crawl, some of Christina's theatricality, and Kelly Clarkson's spunk plus, most bizarrely, a bit of Lindsay Lohan's soul-baring second album on "How Do You Love Someone," a song that lashes out at distant dysfunctional parents, a song so atypically ugly it stops the album dead. That is, until the realization flashes that this, like so much in Tisdale's career, is a careful pose from a showbiz kid who relishes performing so much she'll try anything just along as she can stay on the stage. That attitude can be a little grating in High School Musical, because it was amplified in the character of Sharpay Evans, but here it largely works because her total commitment to the game can result in some truly fun disposable pop. Not everything works -- Tisdale isn't convincing when she tries to deal in either pain or carnality, but when she sticks to the surface, she makes sure that Guilty Pleasure lives up to its title. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, RoviRead Less
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