When I had my first opportunity to listen to “My December” the whole way through, I came away with the impression that it was perfect. I wondered why it hadn’t sold better so far (and seemed to lead to the cancellation of a planned tour).
I recently read a review at Infuze that does a great job explaining the situation. I agree that Kelly is growing as an artist. I could tell that was happening with her second CD when I enjoyed more of its songs than I had with the first. The move away from American-Idol ballads and pop pleased me.
Kelly may lose some of her initial fans because of this growth, but I see it as a positive move for her career. It’s strange, though, that as angst and honesty increases with each CD, her popularity might decrease; for Alanis Morrisette, it was the angst that made her popular. Alanis’ subsequent decision to move on had many fans confused, but that was when I understood her and felt an appreciation for “Jagged Little Pill.”
Love of music is a subjective thing, and I hope that folks will give Kelly a chance to grow. I don’t want her stuck in songs of despair, but the honest tone and edginess she’s gained is much more satisfying than silly pop songs (see Avril’s “Best Damn Thing” for an example of disappointing regression).