Kelly Clarkson: My December

AllHipHop Staff

Politics and music in the music industry have had a complicated long-lasting marriage. Question that? Just check the eve of Clarkson's My December (RCA) release. She’s canceled a tour, fired her manager, and stories of her effort to release this "un-commercial" album flooded the media waves just as much as the album itself. Though Clive Davis' dislike of the album is questionable, was it a ruse so media would authenticate Clarkson as an artist creating a genuine art form? Who knows—who cares.Un-commercial? My December is anything but, commercializing 80's pop, folk, and grunge. Clarkson's post break-up wrangles are felt in "Sober," "Be Still," and "Irvine," showcasing the probability that My December will be this generation’s Tragic Kingdom in the lyrical and concept sense—not in its catchiness. Angst teenagers will soak this up. It's made for those fans that have been with Clarkson since her reigning day on American Idol.As "un-commercial" as My December might be considered, songs like “How I Feel,” “One Minute,” “Don’t Waste Your Time,” and the ska-tinged “Yeah” will be the album’s saving grace from the label dubbed by Davis himself. But coming from a prior album that held a track listing where each song was a potential radio hit, it may be understandable how it’ll be disappointing to some. Songs like “Hole” and “Judas” lack any "hook punch" needed to stay memorable. They’re still worth listening to lyrically, because well, Kelly's mad—the true good girl gone bad.Maybe its depressing nature will have a difficult bearing on audiences. One thing is certain—we have witnessed an artist conceived by pure pop, rebel against it and create and release an album they believed in, while refusing to work formulaically with its label. Still, it's like meeting someone for the first time after you've seen them in your school hallways for years. The obstacle that kept us from meeting the real Clarkson was simply the lack of writing her own songs. Now that she has, there's an album that's her most cohesive work yet. While some tracks take some getting used to, the album sticks.In the end, My December is not Breakaway. No secret that Clarkson wanted to steer clear from it, not to refute its goodness, but for the sake of creating something new. Clarkson’s throwing a curveball...we're still waiting to see if the pitch works.

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