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Review by Brad Green:
Jimmy Neutron Boy Genius is a charming animation about a very small boy with a very big brain. Its soundtrack is aimed at a very young audience with a very short attention span.

Aaron Carter who makes three compilations to the soundtrack (according to the liner notes, although I could only find 2 on the promotional disc I was listening to) is apparently something of a teen idol sensation, though I can’t say I’ve ever heard of him before. Guess I don’t watch enough MTV. And I think I’ll keep it that way. I’m sure Jimmy Neutron would approve of the strategy of taking one’s finger off the pop pulp pulse as a trade for mental health. 

Anyway, his songs sound to me like party jive novelties that sell squillions in record time, and then end up in sale bins even more rapidly. He’s in good company here, with a compilation mostly comprising the sort of neo-disco ditties Michael Jackson might whisk up as throwaway bedroom demos if in the year 2002 he was still a bright-eyed, afro-sporting child star, instead of a Frankenstein monster in dance shoes. 

More disturbing are the offerings of NSYNC, Backstreet Boys and Britney Spears. These tracks are a cut above the novelty pop, but only just. The irksome thing is that these artists aren’t so much talentless puppets propped up by producers and marketing moguls, as genuine talents held back by them. I reckon the Boys can really harmonise, and Britney can really sing, but how will we ever find out for sure when they’re limited to songs with the melodic scope of a single wood block? 

I’d love to hear just one track from each of them which cut back on the polish so that we could finally see if they have some soul. Meanwhile, if they’re going to keep churning out candy, at least give us a new flavour. You don’t have to be a Jimmy Neutron to figure out why the Britney hooks “not that innocent” and “intimidated” have the same number of syllables. 

Published August 1, 2002

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TITLE: Jimmy Neutron
ID: 9273062
ARTISTS: Aaron Carter; NSYNC; LO’ Romeo; Britney Spears; Melissa Lefton; No Secrets; Backstreet Boys; True Vibe; Go Go’s; Just Don’t Understand; Stupid; Hayley; The Ramones

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