Sunday, 9 September 2012

Track Review: Demi Lovato - Give Your Heart A Break


Upon gaining wide recognition her role in the made-for-movie movie/Jonas Brothers vehicle Camp Rock, Demi Lovato never quite graduated beyond Disney's assembly line of kid-friendly, C-level popstars. A few modestly-selling albums here and moderate success with the cathartic "Skyscraper" (switching between quivering and arena-sized vocals, it's certainly by far one of the more empassioned songs in the using-things-in-the-sky-as-a-reference-point-for-your-self-esteem genre), but nothing ever quite zoned in on using Lovato's gifts as a singer.

Finally, a song titled "Give Your Heart a Break," placed just a little bit after the midway point on 2011's bipolar Unbroken, tears past the more cringeworthy dance tracks to deliver a svelte, sharp mid-tempo piece featuring the often-used trope of giving love a chance.


In many ways, Lovato's latest release serves as a bit of a matured counter-piece to Carly Rae Jepsen's runaway (and, unless her sophomore LP Kiss delivers, only) smash hit "Call Me Maybe." The narrative itself foregoes the impulse often found in other current pop songs, in favor of restraint while the delivery hits with bursts of desperation bubbling underneath. The hooks may not be as infectious, but are strong enough when carried by Lovato's powerful voice. The violins have a natural, distinct presence without sounding overly synthetic, and each added instrumental layer sweeps in to reinforce the vocal melody.

Given all these elements coming in together so neatly, it's a wonder if this as well will be another breakthrough singer's only mainstream radio success. But fluke or not, if Demi Lovato and her team can tap into this creative vein again, without falling victim to the sin of rehashing the same product, this former camp rocker may have a solid foundation to be a credible pop act.
~Jake

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