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11:51 AM on 10/16/11
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I wrote a review on YouTube about this record, and you pretty much summed up my feelings about this album. There were a few things I disagreed with you on however. I liked All Night Long: I thought the production and beat were really good, even if the lyrics and subject matter were kind of "been there, done that". I don't care that it doesn't fit the overall sound. However, the next three tracks rubbed me the wrong way, because they seemed like three afterthought collaborations that existed only to attract top 40 attention. This is ESPECIALLY true with Who's That Boy; it reminded me of those old JoJo songs from the early 2000s that did the trick back then, but just comes off as hilarious white-girl gangsta-posin' today. Also, the chord progression and collaborations on You're My Only Shorty reminded me way too much of Justin Bieber's "Baby" to really take it seriously as a pop song. Finally, the track "Hold Up" screams filler track to me. Evidence? She uses the same line "Go Run Run Run" that she says in Skyscraper, which screams shoddy songwriting to me.

However, overall, I enjoyed this album. It is probably the best-produced record that Disney (Hollywood Records is the Disney Record Label) has ever made, probably because they wanted to save their best for the best vocalist that they have to offer. Tracks like Lightweight, Unbroken, Fix A Heart, Skyscraper, Mistake, In Real Life, and My Love Is Like A Star show off the emotional and powerful vocal delivery that was masked in her previous album. To be honest, until this album, the only time she has ever shown her true vocal ability in the studio was in songs like "Every Time You Lie" or "Catch Me" ("Every Time You Lie" should have been saved for this record. Fits the R&B vibe of her album like a glove, unlike, say, Who's That Boy). The rest of the time, Disney tried to mold her as this wannabe Hayley Williams figure for teeny-boppers, while she was covering stuff like Christina Aguilera's "Mercy On Me" in her spare time (Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Y0skpPNXB0). She is someone that should've been in the R&B genre for a LONG time, and I'm happy to see that she is finally taking steps toward making that happen for her.

It should therefore come as no surprise then that my favorite tracks on the album were Lightweight, In Real Life, and My Love Is Like A Star. These songs, more so than even Skyscraper (that song only really showcased one difficult G5 belt at the end of the song), showcase her vocal range and delivery that the other songs fail to do. For example, in My Love Is Like A Star, she finally shows the world that she has a head voice (up to a C6 in the song) and can add vibrato to her belts (up to an F5 in this song), something that she does frequently live but was restrained from doing so in the studio. Critics of her vocal delivery often claim that her belts come off as screaming/yelling (probably because Disney wanted her to be the rock chick, and was trained to belt this way accordingly), but this album, for the most part, gives a bigger picture of her belting capabilities.

Overall, I gave a decent to strong 6/10 for the album, not factoring Demi's vocal delivery. Factoring her voice in, I gave it a light 7/10 (72% in AbsolutePunk scale?), because it's REALLY good (She has amazing power and range compared to most ARTISTS today, let alone for a 19-year-old. I mean, vocally, she's almost Kelly Clarkson in-her-prime good, and she has so much more vocal potential than this. I'm the absolute last thing for a Disney fan, but she is an insanely talented singer that shouldn't be anywhere near the Disney posse.)

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