She's been heralded as the female equivalent of The Streets frontman Mike Skinner but newcomer Lily Allen is much more than such a comparison gives her credit for.

Blending ska, funk and pop, Allen brings us a debut that is brash, bold and nothing if not original. This collection of urban anthems should guarantee serious street-cred for the girl who mostly likely doesn't care much for it, being far too cool for all that recognition. 

Although she would probably blow a fuse at the suggestion, the outspoken Lily Allen brings us a sassy new brand of girl power with the likes of 'Not Big'. She pushes the boundaries out for future rock chicks and sticks very much to the mantra of 'the rules are... there are no rules' (blending genres, borrowing hooks and not holding back when it comes to direct lyrics) and it all works for her.

Cheeky, infectious pop that bashes ex-boyfriends ('Not Big' and 'Smile'), berates siblings ('Alfie') and takes an amusing look at society's fringes ('LDN' and 'Friday Night') and the world of modern romance ('Knock 'Em Out' and 'Littlest Things'), Allen's brand of music should have wide commercial appeal. It's too funny to be taken seriously, yet too clever to be dismissed as just another gimmicky pop record.

Lily Allen is like the bold child that teachers tell to stand in the corner but secretly can't help laughing at. There are a lot of people who won't want to like her for her in-your-face style (or the fact that she has well-known parents or perhaps the fact that she is a child of the Internet revolution that is My Space) but try, try again.

Instantly addictive tunes. What's not to like?

Linda McGee