Album Review: Pete Yorn And Scarlett Johansson – Break Up

September 9, 2009

Written by Diablo Cody.

Concept: Seriously? Okay.

Sound: Scarlett’s voice isn’t bad, and it’s definitely not the kind of lip-sync wail you get out of most Hollywood crossover scams. She actually seems to be shooting for Billie Holiday a lot of the time, which is a good choice. That’s not to say it’s even close. The obvious selling point of her stardom only makes it easier to picture her singing dusky, watered down jazz standards in a casino; it’s about that quality. This is the kind of appeal she exercised in film by being whoever the producer wanted her to be: the masochistic girl next door with jerk boyfriends. Instead of a jerk boyfriend we here have Yorn, whose work is equally lazy as Johansson’s deeply unnecessary Tom Waits covers. They get by constantly giving the impression that they could do better, but of course they never do. It’s a gentrification of mainstream music, Disney for dads…does that make sense? Is reviewing music driving me insane?

Lyrics: You get a lot of ‘cute’ duets, where I’m mad at you and you’re mad at me but not really. They read like a made for T.V. movie where nothing’s offensive or all that stupid, but it’s still hard to believe somebody blew money producing it.

Quick And Dirty: Better than you’d expect, maybe, given it remains sort of pitiful. (♦♦½)

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