Get over the anxiety hump, and then stockpile your life with admirers, and living life like you don't give an "f" becomes easy, since everyone around is giving an "f" about your every move. Pop-rapper/alt-popper Hoodie Allen had stockpiled years of "likes" and "shares" before getting to this official debut album, and while People Keep Talking offers no suggestions on what to do when the chips are down and the downloads have stopped, his living-in-the-golden-moment attitude sure sounds like something to latch onto thanks to these vibrant, slick, and oh so infectious tracks. "Audacity" must be the first word in the man's dictionary as "I'm Larry David AND Miles Davis, so everybody hate it, but fuck it, I hardly blame 'em" is his bold style of swagger, then "Sirens" offers "Used to take the bus, now I whip it like Devo" plus an Alex Wiley appearance because Hoodie's got one foot in the mega-mall and one foot on the edge. The problem is his third leg, or at least that's the way he sees it, as he waves it in listeners' faces during the willingly icky seduction of "The Real Thing" ("Ain't in a rush to go to church because I used protection" delivered with boyband sincerity), plus "Act My Age" suggests Hoodie thinks he will do fine swaggering into his sixties, misinterpreting Maroon 5's "Moves Like Jagger" while ignoring numerous studies from the National Institute on Aging. Still, "Show Me What You're Made Of" enters an elevated state of "lulz" when it spits "I got Mary, Mindy, Megan, Morgan/I'm gonna smash 'em, Billy Corgan" and then "All About It" with Ed Sheeran gives up "I'm not a rapper, but a singer with a game plan" for all the talented opportunists of the world. Six kids, four divorces, two bypass operations, and 100 Viagra prescriptions later and Hoodie may regret what is the Who's "hope I die before I get old"-styled albatross at an album's length, but this kid's alright when it comes to talent and style, so return to a time when opportunities and safety nets were everywhere. People Keep Talking glows and thrills like a blowin'-up smartphone on a Saturday night, and with none of that real life ho-hum or sobering wisdom.
AllMusic Review by David Jeffries