As stated so clearly on the title song "Breakout," Miley Cyrus as an artist is probably at her best when celebrating the up side of having fun with her teen friends. However, teens can have heartbreak as well. Breakout presents both sides, and Cyrus embraces new wave-edged teen pop as the best way to communicate to her hoards of admirers. Hannah Montana is being left in the dust in favor of pop star Miley Cyrus. It's not a bad choice at all and here Cyrus proves she's up to the task.
Gives Teen Pop a Broad Appeal
Some may balk at the shrewd marketing approach behind Breakout, but an unbiased hearing of the music reveals a number of real pleasures. The entire album is laced with homage to '80s new wave, most obviously the amphetamine rush of "Fly On the Wall." The presence of the Go-Go's Gina Shock as a co-writer of the title song and a zippy cover of Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" will endear much of this music to parents of Cyrus' teen and tween fans.
Is it all calculated? Probably a bit, but some of the best pop music in the past has been as well. Many adult pop fans could do much worse than putting some of these songs on their iPods.
Hannah Montana Left Behind?
What about Hannah Montana, Miley Cyrus' alter ego and original path to stardom? This album proves Cyrus can stand as a pop artist on her own. The lack of TV show pretension is refreshing. The growing separation from her kids' TV star status may actually encourage mainstream pop radio stations to look at Miley Cyrus as an artist with broader appeal. Barring a sudden collapse of public interest in this music, this seems a fruitful path for Cyrus to follow.
Top Tracks on 'Breakout'
- "7 Things"
- "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun"
- "Fly On the Wall"
- "These Four Walls"
A Satisfying Step Forward
Breakout does bog down a bit in its second half with perhaps one too many ballads and the bile of "Simple Song." However, this album is indeed a strong step forward as a pop artist for Miley Cyrus. Load some of these zippy songs in to your favorite player and you will soon look to them for any needed pick-me-up. Miley Cyrus is the teen artist of the moment, and this album is likely to keep her on top.