Release Date: Jul 21, 2009
Record label: Hollywood
Genre(s): Rock, Pop
Like Britney Spears before her, Demi Lovato pretty much admits in the title of her sophomore album that she's serving up more of the same the second time around, but unlike Britney, that may not have been Demi's intention. For Here We Go Again, Lovato makes a relatively clean break from the Jonas Brothers, who penned much of her debut, Don't Forget, drafting sensitive AAA singer/songwriters Jon McLaughlin and John Mayer presumably to give Lovato a bit of mature veneer, a subtle shift buried underneath the relentlessly cheerful Radio Disney production and Lovato's irrepressible spunk. Both sonic characteristics tend to camouflage Demi's biggest moves away from teen pop -- the fussy balladeering of "Falling Over Me," the mock-Mraz jazz-pop "Every Time You Lie," the sober soul searching of the Mayer collaboration "World of Chances," the Celtic flair of "Gift of a Friend" -- which also happen to be the very things that make Here We Go Again not quite as much fizzy fun as Don't Forget.
”It’s too quiet in here,” complains Demi Lovato on Here We Go Again. It’s a sentiment that few who hear the shout-along choruses and crunchy guitars that fill the Disney Channel mainstay’s second album are likely to share. Most of these tunes are standard-issue pop-rock, handled by Lovato with utter competence. More surprising are the harder-edged numbers (e.g., ”Got Dynamite”) that she sneaks in, suggesting a direction that might set her apart in years to come.
Disney starlet Demi Lovato desperately wants to be Kelly Clarkson. From the fingerless glove-wearing fashion to the “Since U Been Gone”-stylized music video of the title track from her sophomore effort, and she’s even got a song called “Remember December”, harkening back to the imagery of Clarkson’s third studio album My December. Lovato even has the two factors that make Clarson such a powerhouse talent (albeit, to a much lesser degree): a set of charismatic pipes and the ability to impose herself into a line and sell a hook.