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Camp Rock Soundtrack
Artist: Various
Label: Walt Disney
URL: disneymusic.disney.go.com/albums/camprock.html

However Columbia and INO Records failed to set many hearts aflutter with The Jonas Brothers, Disney's synergistic entertainment machinery has--at
least, or especially, with certain female demographics.

So, the soundtrack to the first of at least two Jonas-centric Disney Channel movies, Camp Rock has the minimum CD requirements of Joe, Kevin
and Nick J. Good news is that the Jo' Bros' contributions not only exceeds the quality of their own previous album but the entire collection sounds
like some kind of high watermark for the current spate of tweenybopper pop.

The siblings rock appealingly chunky power pop on "Play My Music." Even if the "forget that fancy car" lyric sounds a tad too cute for a band whose
members already live in a mansion with their parents (whoops, I forgot they're singing _in character_), it still sounds like a statement of purpose for the trio in concert.

Joe Jonas, since he's the male co-lead in the tele-flick, sings the remainder of the set's Jonasness. His verse in female co-lead Demi Lovato's "This Is Me" abets the usual "celebrate your uniqueness" philosophy in which so many movies of this stripe specialize (this is from the same company responsible for _High School Musical_). At least as good and more interesting insofar as it sounds like a cryptic expression of his Christianity--is the set's down-tempo standout, "Gotta Find You." The theology's perhaps a mite jumbled (not that the song's original context was meant to convey theology) but it's the closest a Jonas has come to CCM since leaving INO.

Lovato sounds as much like the tomboy she looks like--not Avril Lavigne nasty, but like the gal who'd play with the lads who still isn't bashful about glamming it up. She's supposedly Disney's attempt to replicate Miley Cyrus' phenomenal success, but my advice to the House of Mouse is to let 15 year-old Lovato mature organically. "Who Will I Be?" has the distaff empowerment theme that Cyrus' clandestine rocker Hannah Montana character doesn't quite embody.

Mostly gems from the film's support players fill out the rest of the fill out the disc. Meaghan Martin's "Too Cool" surprises with its early '90s rave-pop flavor and un-ironic haughtiness. Martin's more sympathetically affection-hungry on the equally danceable "2 Stars," and she overall sounds like the more cosmopolitan complement to Lovato's earthier approach.

Though Jordan Francis' '80s-styled dance-pop "Start The Party" and especially his reggaeton collaboration with Roshon Bernard Fegan, "Hasta La Vista," have their charms, gals arguably have the rest of the soundtrack's best moments. Renee Sandstrom's "Here I Am" bolsters Lovato's girl power themes (not far removed from a rockier Superchick number, really). And Aaryn Doyle's middling rapping actually works in favor of "What It Takes," her demand for proper affection from any prospective boyfriend.

Potentially pliable grooves abound so throughout this Camp (the whole-cast titular tune, too) that I'm hoping for a dance remix longplayer
just as the second Hannah Montana soundtrack and High School Musical sequel had as ancillary products. Though surely some Jonas fans may be
disappointed by the relative paucity of their guys' presence here, the rest of the cast provide moments at least their equal.
 

Jamie Lee Rake
July 17, 2008

 
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