Kaci Brown has identity crisis on debut album

On her debut album, Instigator, 17-year-old Kaci Brown may be undergoing an identity crisis. The Texas-raised Brown entered the pop scene in August 2005, seemingly undecided in her direction. Listening to the short, just-over-40-minute CD can have your head spinning, making you think you’re hearing anyone and everyone from Mandy Moore, Jessica Simpson, Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears.

Unquestionably talented, singer/songwriter Brown landed her publishing deal at age 13 and taught herself the piano and guitar. The ballads of “Cadillac Hotel” and “You Fool” help widen her appeal from the vocals and the beats of title track “Instigator” and “The Waltz.” However, despite her best efforts to emerge as a crossover artist, the seemingly childish lyrics quickly define Brown as just another pop artist directed towards the teeny-bopper audience.

On her website, Kaci describes her first single, “Unbelievable” as a song “about the crazy things love makes you do, it’s about being in the shadow and believing things that you know can’t be true,” hinting at a more astute and emotional artist than her lyrics would presume.

Brown has worked endorsements for Star Jeans and Hollister, and under the direction of producer and co-writer Toby Gad, who has worked with artists such as Enrique Iglesias and Willa Ford, She toured with the Backstreet Boys during their summer 2005 tour and starts her our mall tour this November.

With the right direction, Brown can harness her vocal range and musical talent and become more then just another pop artist, but until then, Instigator falls in the ranks with other wannabe teenage acts.

Bari Lieberman can be contacted at b.lieberman@umiami.edu.