In This Skin

For her third Columbia album, songbird-siren Jessica Simpson went into lockdown with a host of Nashville and Los Angeles songwriter/producers to ensure that her own lyrical voice prevails throughout "

For her third Columbia album, songbird-siren Jessica Simpson went into lockdown with a host of Nashville and Los Angeles songwriter/producers to ensure that her own lyrical voice prevails throughout "In This Skin." The result is a topical triptych of love, marriage and self-assurance. First single "Sweetest Sin," a collaboration with writer Diane Warren and producer Ric Wake, is representative, with its slinky insinuations and adoring goose-bumps melody. Simpson shows off those glorious pipes on a number of lofty ballads, including the searing "I Have Loved You" and near a cappella "You Don't Have to Let Go" (a nod to her dad's love). There's enough tempo to broaden appeal, highlighted by the Egyptian-colored "My Way Home" and bass-bumpin' "Forbidden Fruit." A wholly satisfying set from a former teen idol who is obviously comfortable in her womanly "Skin." Tons of potential.—CT