Review – Lily Allen, It’s Not Me It’s You
– by Kate Reid
The title of Lily Allen‘s new album, It’s Not Me, It’s You is a snarky testament to the gallivanting girl in her twenties. Lily and I are cut from the same cloth (I’m 24 and single), so I feel her on the bed-hopping blame game, but I feel even more for the poor sap who inspired “Not Fair”. The galloping, country-influenced romp through Allen’s worn sheets introduces us to a gentleman who’s “not like all them other boys”—apparently because he’s considerate everywhere but in the bedroom. She paints a wince-inducing scene with the lines, “I look into your eyes I want to get to know you/And then you make this noise and it’s apparent it’s all over.”
At least the man in question can take comfort in the fact that Lily’s been on her back so many times no one will ever know which lad she’s lampooning.
But if this guy is so great in every other area, why doesn’t Lily Allen just give him a tutorial in tumbling? I’ll tell you why—because even though all this shoddy ass grabbing provides her with some decent songwriting fodder, Allen’s greatest muse will always be herself.
I suppose it takes one to know one, so let me just say that the last thing a selfish, pleasure-seeking lady wants is to waste time training a nice guy when she could be getting non-committal sex elsewhere. For reasons why, just turn to the lyrics of Allen’s big hit, “The Fear”. In it, she calls herself “a weapon of massive consumption” and her insatiable appetite for “loads of clothes and fuckloads of diamonds” extends to her sexual habits as well. It’s like shoes. Why settle for the Stella McCartney platforms when you can have the Derek Lam pumps too? A girl needn’t choose between the brooding bassist and the erudite academic – she can wear ’em both out.
Then she gets all talk-show confessional during the chorus of “The Fear”. Here, Allen seems to be singing through the sighs when she admits, “I don’t know what’s right and what’s real anymore and I don’t know how I’m meant to feel anymore.” Welcome to nihilism, my dear. Another song, “Chinese”, extols the simple pleasure of eating take-out with your boyfriend, and “22” reveals her anxiety about ending up as a thirty-something philanderer, so maybe the girl is looking to settle down after all. I recently fell in love with a $1,000 leather jacket and my eyes have yet to wander to another coat, so maybe there’s hope for me too. Insert winky emoticon.
Every woman eventually butts her pretty head against the paradox Allen’s contending with: how to be sexually liberated yet also find a steady partner. Curbing the insatiable appetite is tough, especially when you’re a hot young thing with a credit card and a record deal, but maybe she just needs a few more spins on the sexytime carousel before she’s dizzy enough to fall in love. The world is your oyster, Lily Allen – just take care of your clam and hope for the best.