Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Kelly Clarkson

  • Breakaway [RCA, 2004] B-
  • My December [RCA, 2007] Dud
  • All I Ever Wanted [RCA, 2009] *

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Breakaway [RCA, 2004]
Unlike young Hilary Duff, 23-year-old Clarkson feels the responsibilities of stardom, which demand melodramatic overkill. The doctors give her stronger pills than, say, Clay Aiken--the prefab kissoff of "Walk Away," the new wave heartbreak of "Since U Been Gone," "Because of You" may just describe an occurrence, here's the verb "implode," and "There's no light at the end of the tunnel/Just a bridge that I gotta burn" could hold up its end of a bargain. None of these survives Clarkson's larger-than-life ambitions or compressed-to-oppress production regimen. But she may have a heart, and it may end up in the right place. B-

My December [RCA, 2007] Dud

All I Ever Wanted [RCA, 2009]
Striving to master the popular art of enacting humongous feelings in lieu of comprehending them or conveying them ("My Life Would Suck Without You," "I Do Not Hook Up"). *