Since her time with Disney, starring in the television movie Camp Rock and its sequel, pop princess in training Demi Lovato has blossomed in front of the American audience. After a brief stint in rehab, the artist released her third studio album, Unbroken, which featured her biggest hits to date, “Skyscraper” and “Give Your Heart A Break”. Following her judging stint on The X Factor, alongside Simon Cowell and Britney Spears, Lovato is returning to the music scene with a new full length album, Demi, set for a May 14 release. Preceded by the top ten hit “Heart Attack”, the record is an anticipated release for the pop loving community.
The album’s lead single, “Heart Attack”, was a fiery, Kelly Clarkson-inspired kickoff to the new project. Featuring an impressive vocal performance and electro-pop production, the track had to overcome mediocre songwriting referencing Ken dolls and basketballs. While not as incredible as other songs in her catalog, it kept the singer on the right path of a much deserved pop takeover.
Filled with mid tempo ballads, the new effort focuses its attention on Lovato’s maturing vocal abilities. On tracks such as “Nightingale” and “In Case”, the artist shines with limited production and vocal effects supporting her talents. The piano-driven ballads are Lovato’s forte and become bright moments for the album, showing the growth of a young artist.
Besides the soaring, slower moments, Lovato shows she is capable of commanding a dance floor with a few of the numbers. “Neon Lights” has number one dance hit written all over it with radio friendly beats and lyrics supporting the artist’s soaring vocals. When critics and fans call Lovato the future of pop, this is the number they were waiting to hear. On “Never Been Hurt”, comparisons to Robyn can be heard. Certain lines are reminiscent of “Indestructible” by the Swedish dance diva, but this song is completely different and it’s a reason why it is a standout.
With summer fast approaching, certain songs of the album have a good shot at being contenders for a complete radio takeover in the next few months. “Really Don’t Care” featuring Cher Lloyd contains a sassy attitude, upbeat background production and some chanting thrown in for good measure. It will surely become an anthem for all the broken hearts of the summer. Pop/rock is usually Lovato’s specialty and “Something That We’re Not” takes the artist back to her roots. Dedicated to all the delusional, love-struck boys in her life, Lovato makes it clear they will never be more than her friend.
Tracks such as the rumored second single “Made in the USA”, which bares structural similarities to “Halo” by Beyonce, and “Without the Love”, a story of a deceptive lover, are not the strongest moments for the new album. Unfortunately the choruses fall flat, “No matter how far we go, I want the whole world to know, I want you back,” the artist sings, and keep the album from achieving the ultimate level of perfection.
Demi is the fourth studio album from former Disney princess Demi Lovato. While the singer never caught my attention with her first two efforts, this new collection has opened my eyes to her immense talents and lovable personality. While most of the track stays true to who Lovato is as an artist, the emotional, string-assisted ballads, she shows she is capable of much more, including revengeful summer tunes and dance floor-ready anthems. Every song features incredible vocals and top notch production, it will be a challenge to find something not to like.