On her new album, Bittersweet World, she takes a step forward – ditching the Avril Lavigne-lite sound of her first two records to work with producers Timbaland (“a genius”) and The Neptunes Chad Hugo (“he’s unbelievable”). The same production teams were also behind Madonna’s new album, but Simpson brushes away any similarities. “I haven’t heard Madonna’s record but I would never compare myself with her,” she says.
“We have both worked with great people.” Simpson admits she was “nervous” when she stepped into the studio with the super-producers – but was soon inspired by the late nights and “loopy” atmosphere. Of The Neptunes’ Chad Hugo, she says: “He’s just great to watch. I’d come up with some random melody and he’d just create this insane beat right away.” The resulting album is a kaleidoscopic collision of day-glo pop styles, which Simpson describes as “kind of dancey, kind of rock, kind of ’80s”.