Picks and Pans Review: Jessica Simpson

updated 09/15/2008 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/15/2008 AT 01:00 AM EDT

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REVIEWED BY RANDY VEST

COUNTRY
For her country music debut, pop singer Simpson skews more rock than rural. Many of the 11 tunes (all but three cowritten by Simpson) open on a gentle steel guitar or mandolin, then suddenly—bam!—morph into overwrought power ballads. Simpson—who tends to wail rather than interpret a song—does conjure up some feeling on the unabashed vow-of-love title tune (penned and harmonized on by Dolly Parton) and "Remember That," a cautionary tale of spousal abuse. Whether or not she finds country success, let's hope her next venture is Jessica Simpson unplugged.

DOWNLOAD THIS: The infectious single "Come On Over"

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