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Music Review

Demi Lovato: 'Don't Forget'

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Demi Lovato: 'Don't Forget'
Released on Monday, Apr 20 2009

Back in September Demi Lovato's debut album entered the US charts at number two, but unless you're still in a training bra or eligible for child tax benefits, you could be forgiven for thinking Who?! So, for the uninitiated, here's a recap of events so far: girl stars alongside spunky pop trio in Disney Channel movie, girl bags record deal, girl lands own Disney Channel TV show. Girl, in case you were wondering, is still only 16.

More than half of Lovato's remarkably successful debut is co-written, co-produced and co-played by said spunky pop trio. Does that mean Don't Forget sounds like a female-fronted Jonas Brothers? Well, actually, yeah. This is an album of cute, catchy bubblegum rock songs about typical teen issues: staying true to yourself, making up and breaking up, lusting over someone unattainable. Though Lovato poses with a guitar on the cover, it's worth noting that she never actually shows off her axe-slinging skills here, but she's certainly a stronger singer than the Jonases. In fact, her full-bodied vocal performances are consistently impressive.

The relatively risqué moments - and that relatively is crucial - come on the tracks that the Jonases have nothing to do with. 'Believe In Me' finds Lovato indulging her angsty side, 'Trainwreck' contains an unexpected reference to "medication", and 'The Middle' features the potentially saucy line "I just wanna be rolling with you". However, this Disney Channel pro is never anything less than relatable, as this snappy little couplet from opener 'La La Land' demonstrates: "I'm not a supermodel, I still eat McDonald's." Miley couldn't have said it better herself.

Actually, snappy's a good word to describe Don't Forget generally. It doesn't outstay its welcome, detaining the listener for a little under 40 minutes, and the supply of pop hooks is pretty steady. None of its eleven songs is terrific, but none is terrible either, and Lovato makes a good first impression, coming off like a more innocent, less try-hard Katy Perry. Still, if you don't like the idea of an album that features the word "tragical", platitudes like "everyone's perfect in unusual ways", or a 16-year-old telling you that nothing's as real as it seems in L.A., Don't Forget probably isn't for you.

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