Album: Avril Lavigne

Under My Skin, Arista
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The Independent Culture

Avril Lavigne is like a more palatable, designer version of Alanis Morissette. The parallels are undeniable: there's the same self-obsession, the same pervasive sense of hurt, and the same conviction that it's all someone else's fault. Not to mention the same indie-lite, corporate-rock textures, the same berating banshee caterwaul and, of course, the same sort of ludicrous sales figures - now apparently in the region of 14 million for her debut album, Let Go. But she's a far less ambitious songwriter, confining herself to routine gripes and whinges rather than intense psychodramas, and sticking almost religiously to the quiet verse/loud chorus format established by Nirvana and pretty much mined-out by now. She's certainly as hard to love as Alanis: frankly, it's impossible to imagine Avril ever being adequately placated, either by word, deed, or devotion. Here's the evidence in her own words, each quote taken from a different song: "All the pain regarding you"; "When I'm alone I feel so much be

Avril Lavigne is like a more palatable, designer version of Alanis Morissette. The parallels are undeniable: there's the same self-obsession, the same pervasive sense of hurt, and the same conviction that it's all someone else's fault. Not to mention the same indie-lite, corporate-rock textures, the same berating banshee caterwaul and, of course, the same sort of ludicrous sales figures - now apparently in the region of 14 million for her debut album, Let Go. But she's a far less ambitious songwriter, confining herself to routine gripes and whinges rather than intense psychodramas, and sticking almost religiously to the quiet verse/loud chorus format established by Nirvana and pretty much mined-out by now. She's certainly as hard to love as Alanis: frankly, it's impossible to imagine Avril ever being adequately placated, either by word, deed, or devotion. Here's the evidence in her own words, each quote taken from a different song: "All the pain regarding you"; "When I'm alone I feel so much better"; "Don't try to tell me what to do"; "He never made me feel like I was special". The first glimmer of optimism appears in "Who Knows" - but it sounds as though she begrudges the few, brief moments spent smiling.

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