I never listened to this at the time – but I couldn’t avoid the videos for the big singles, particularly the title track. It was everywhere. This was a teen sensation – and it was pitched in all the right ways (or wrong ways if you think about it) to a broad audience. Britney Spears, former child star, was a teen pop sensation that was a role model for young girls, a sex symbol for young boys and (ew) older men…she was the naughty schoolgirl trope turned into a pop singer.
I can listen to the album now – as I’ve done – and hear fantastic pop arrangements. Great hooky pop songwriting. But I don’t care for it. It was never meant for me. And so I won’t be revisiting it.
It’s hard to when you watch the video again and hear (and see) the leg banging against the desk and then the thumping of the pen. I mean it’s all so artless and cynical and creepy and nasty…and that’s money in the bank. And never mind the after effects or the mental-health spiral of the performer. None of that matters in that cash-grab moment.
So, actually, baby no more times. But this was a huge album. An important album for many. And there’s no way you can say it is shit. It’s simply a matter of taste.