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It's Not Me, It's You is the second studio album and last album by British pop singer-songwriter Lily Allen. It was released in the United Kingdom on 9 February 2009 and on 10 February in North America. It has been certified 2× platinum by the British Phonographic Industry on the date of 28 August 2009, for shipments of over 600,000 copies in the United Kingdom. It was also certified 3× platinum by the Australian Recording Industry Association on the 15th of September 2009 for shipments of over 210,000 copies in Australia.

Background

In April 2008, Allen announced that she was moving in a "new direction" on her upcoming record. A year later, she described the album's sound in the April 2009 issue of Teen Vogue, saying it was "quite fun" and had "loads of different types of music—country, jazz, and electronic." She continued on to say, "I wanted to do something danceable, to make the gigs more interesting for me and the people watching."

Allen recorded most of the album at Eagle Rock Studios in Los Angeles with producer Greg Kurstin of the band The Bird and the Bee. Of the songwriting process, she said "Greg builds the chords up and I just sing along and make up the words and then once you've got the bare song, we decide which way we're gonna go with the production."

MySpace demos

Prior to the album's release, Allen posted a number of demos on her MySpace page. The first two to appear were "I Could Say" and "I Don't Know" on 20 March 2008, the latter of which was retitled and released as the album's lead single, "The Fear". Based on the first two demos, Digital Spy described her new artistic direction as more mature, more reflective and more electronic.

A third, politically charged clip was later posted, with the titles "Guess Who Batman" and later "Get With the Brogram", finally appearing as "GWB". Despite both working titles sharing initials with George W. Bush, Allen wrote that "this song is not a direct attack at anyone, it was originally written about the BNP in the UK but then I felt this issue has become relevant pretty much everywhere, we are the youth, we can make coolness for our future, its up to us. Go green and hate hate". The song was retitled "Fuck You" for the album version.

Allen posted a fourth song on her MySpace page, called "Who'd of Known", noting that the song had been recorded for the album but would not be included due to legal issues since the chorus is musically similar to the Take That song "Shine". However, Take That later did allow Allen to include the song on the album (now titled grammatically correctly as "Who'd Have Known").

On 2 February, Lily posted all 12 tracks from her album to listen to on her MySpace profile page.

Release

In May 2008, Allen told The Sunday Mirror that the album was nearly finished. Allen said of the album "I've worked so hard. My next album is nearly finished. I'm on a two-week break and then I'm starting a massive promotional tour."

In August 2008, Allen blamed the delay in the album's release on her record company EMI/Parlophone. On September 15, it was announced via her MySpace blog that the album will be released on February 9, 2009.

In July 2008, the working title of the album was confirmed as Stuck on the Naughty Step. On October 7 at the BMI Awards, Allen announced that the album title had been changed to It's Not Me, It's You, due to the fact that she "lived with [the original title] for too long" and got bored of the original title.

On 29 October Allen announced the album will be released in the United States release date on 10 February 2009. The track listings were also released. She described the sound as bigger and a more ethereal sound. She noted she has grown as a person and feels the album will have some sort of integrity.

On 19 December, a 12 track promotional samplers were sent out to various blogs and online stores, to review ahead of the album's release.

On 20 December, British newspaper The Sun gave away a free 7 track album mini-mix, as part of the ongoing promotion schedule by EMI. The mini-mix included "Everyone's At It" and "The Fear", as well as 4 previously unheard studio versions of "Not Fair", "22", "Never Gonna Happen" and "Fuck You".

On 23 December, music magazine NME have confirmed that the exclusive first play of the album will be available days before its physical release on their website.

The album was released digitally in the UK on 8 February, the eve of its physical release.

In its first week of release in the UK, It's Not Me, It's You sold 112,568 albums making it go to Number 1 instantly.

In United States, debuting at #5 on the U.S. Billboard 200 with sales of 70,000 copies first week.

Promotion

Allen promoted the album all around the world.She appeared on GMTV in the UK where she performed "The Fear". She again performed this song on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross and The Sunday Night Project".

She performed "The Fear" and "Fuck You" in France on Le Grand Journal de Canal+ and sang "The Fear" on NRJ Radio.

Allen appeared on many American talk shows to promote her album, such as The Today Show, The View, Late Show with David Letterman, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Jimmy Kimmel Live! and The Ellen DeGeneres Show.She also performed "The Fear" and "Not Fair" at Sessions@AOL.

She also went to Australia to promote the album where she appeared on talk show Rove Live where she performed "The Fear", "Not Fair" and "22", and Triple J radio station where she performed "The Fear", "Not Fair" and "He Wasn't There".She also performed "The Fear" on So You Think You Can Dance Australia.

She performed "The Fear" on Japanese show Music Station.

She performed "Not Fair" on UK TV show T4 and was interviewed about the album on The One Show.

Allen performed songs off the album and old hits on Radio 1's Big Weekend and at club night G-A-Ymarker.

She has also promoted the album with her tour and festivals around the world.

Critical response

It's Not Me, It's You has been given a positive response from critics. Reviewing for The Observer, Garry Mulholland awarded the album five out of five, calling this a "wonderful record," and added that it is "a pop album brave enough to have a go at defining the times." James Skinner of Drowned in Sound echoed these sentiments, stating that "when Lily Allen is at the top of her game, she is the (im)perfect pop star for our times" in a generally positive review. Clash concluded: "Britain’s mouthy pop idol returns triumphantly and with the brawny guts to stick with what she knows best", after commenting that Allen "probably has enough personal ammunition to fuel a ten-year career of brutally autobiographical albums". Mikael Wood of Billboard stated the album is "hardly the grown-up buzz-kill it might have been", according with him, it was thanks to "Allen's still-sharp lyrical wit and an exceedingly crafty production job by Greg Kurstin." Wood also praised in particular the track "Him", calling it as an "irresistible tune".

The album was favourably reviewed by The Daily Telegraph. Reviewer Neil McCormick praised her more personal songs on the album; "It is when she turns her sharp tongue to her own affairs of the heart that Allen's growing adventurousness and lyrical confidence really pay off....But in particular Who'd Have Known is a tender evocation of friendship turning to love, in which the detail is telling and Allen's vocal performance positively glows with easy affection. On such songs, Allen still sounds like a real person telling us the most intimate details of her real life, only with better hooks." McCormick also praised the lead single, as "superb" and "an ironic declaration of celebrity superficiality set to a pulsing, sleekly modern electro dance backing."

Tour

In 2009, Allen performed 81 international shows in support of It's Not Me, It's You.

Singles

  • "The Fear": Allen stated on her official website that "The Fear" was the chosen song for the lead single. The song had its radio premiere via on The Scott Mills Show on 1 December 2008. The song's official music video had its premiere on 4 December at Channel 4, but it was leaked before the official release date; it was uploaded on YouTube 2 hours before the official premiere. It had 200 views before the premiere, although Parlophone's official YouTube account uploaded it on 3 December. It was released on European iTunes on 4 December and at the United States iTunes, the song later became Lily's second number 1 in the UK, climbing a massive 167 places to the top spot.


  • "Not Fair": "Not Fair" was released on 20 March via digital download, and on 16 May as a CD single. "Not Fair" was played by DJ Ken Bruce on BBC Radio 2 days before the release of the album, and was heavily edited to 02:04, removing the line "Oh I lie here in the wet patch in the middle of the bed, I'm feeling pretty damn hard done by, I've spent ages giving head".


  • "Fuck You": "Fuck You" was released as the album's third single on May 19, 2009. "Fuck You" was released on the Australian iTunes store on April 22, available as a censored version different to that which appeared on the "The Fear" EP, and the normal album version. The track peaked at number 9 on the Czech Airplay Chart and 198 in the European Charts , under the demo name "Guess Who Batman". The song also has received much airplay on Australian radio stations, Nova and Triple J, and charted at #90 on the 2008 Triple J Hottest 100. This resulted in it charting at #27 on the ARIA top 40 digital charts for the week beginning 16th Feb 22009. In the Netherlands the song in fact was released as the second single, and peaked at 1 at the Singles Chart.


  • "22": "22" was released as the album's fourth official single on 14 July 2009. On 31 May, Lily stated that "22" would be her next single from her Twitter page after revealing that the music video would be shot the next day: "On my way home, video shoot for 22 tomorrow, very exciting x". The video was released on 11 July 2009.


  • "Who'd Have Known": "Who'd Have Known" was the fifth official single (fourth in the United Kingdom) from the album, released on 23 November 2009. In USA, it was released on December 1, 2009.


Other songs

  • "Womanizer": On 13 December 2008 Allen revealed a cover of Britney Spears' hit single, "Womanizer". When asked, Allen stated Spears was a "goddess" and that her new album is "amazing". Lily said about the cover song "We did it for fun with the guys (producers) in the studio, it was really great and fun." It can be heard on Parlophone's official YouTube channel. Although this song is not on the album It's Not Me, It's You, it is on the iTunes exclusive F.U.E.P..
  • "Chinese": A choral rendition performed by Capital Children's Choir is a tribute to Allen from the choir's founder Rachel Santesso who as a twenty-one year old choir instructor befriended an eleven year old Allen.


Track listing

Special Edition CD and DVD

Release history

Country Date
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Spainmarker
Portugalmarker
Australia
United Kingdommarker (Digital)
United Kingdommarker (Physical)
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Netherlandsmarker
United Statesmarker
Canadamarker
Finlandmarker
Brazilmarker
Latin America


Charts & Sales

The album has so far reached #1 in 3 countries, the top 20 in 18 countries and has sold over aruond 1.6 million copies worldwide so far.

Chart Peak

position
Australian ARIA Albums Chart 1
Austrian Albums Chart 21
Belgian (Flanders) Albums Chart 5
Belgian (Wallonia) Albums Chart 22
Canadian Albums Chart 1
Croatian International Albums Chart 36
Czech Republic Albums Chart 11[680567]
Dutch Albums Chart 17
Estonian Albums Chart 8
European Albums Chart 20
Finnish Albums Chart 11
French Albums Chart 11
German Albums Chart 17
Irish Albums Chart 3
Italian Albums Chart 41
Mexican Albums Chart 50
New Zealand Albums Chart 9
Norwegian Albums Chart 26
Spanish Albums Chart 93
Sweden Albums Chart 14
Swiss Albums Chart 6
UK Albums Chart 1
U.S. Billboard 200 5




Country Certification(s) Sales/Shipments
Australia 3× platinum 210,000+
Belgium Gold 15,000+
New Zealand Gold 7,500+
Swiss Gold 15,000+
United Kingdom 2× platinum 600,000+


References

  1. Lily Allen announces US release of second album. NME, 29 October 2008
  2. http://new.music.yahoo.com/blogs/chart_watch/28645/week-ending-feb-15-2009-taylor-swift-gets-last-laugh/
  3. Lily Allen ? It's Not Me, It's You: Pop CD of the week review The Daily Telegraph. 26 January 2009
  4. Lily Allen - Fear, Youtube.com
  5. http://www.ifpicr.cz/hitparada/index.php?a=titul&hitparada=2&titul=146284&sec=5d4ad6088a5d4d5371943fe557440667
  6. http://www.ariacharts.com.au/pages/charts_display_digital.asp?chart=1DT40
  7. http://www.radio1.gr/music/forthcoming_uk_singles.htm
  8. "UVic student helped create British star Lily Allen". Jack Knox. The Vancouver Sun. July 4, 2009
  9. It's Not Me, It's You Neowing. Retrieved on 2009-2-3.
  10. http://www.emimusic.de/produkt/3252783,5099969427527/lily_allen-its_not_me_its_you#1
  11. http://www.livrariacultura.com.br/scripts/musica/resenha/resenha.asp?nitem=15001438&sid=15310012911243249837374&k5=19FE0AD8&uid=
  12. [1]
  13. HDU listing
  14. http://www.pedro.ee/web/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=739&Itemid=18
  15. [2]
  16. Medialine.de
  17. It's Not Me, It's You on acharts.us
  18. [3]
  19. chartstats.com It's Not Me, It's You
  20. Billboard summary
  21. http://www.ariacharts.com.au/pages/charts_display.asp?chart=1G50
  22. http://www.ultratop.be/fr/weekchart.asp?cat=a&year=2009&date=20091128
  23. New Zealand Gold Certification
  24. http://swisscharts.com/awards.asp?year=2009
  25. http://www.bpi.co.uk/certifiedawards/search.aspx



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