Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam
There are actually three things you can truly count on in life: death, taxes and Disney soundtracks. One's bad, one's good and the other's a necessary evil. You decide which one's which.
As for Disney's songs, they tend to be all about a certain kind of greatness: how great it is to be with your significant other, how great it is to hang with your friends, how great it is to follow your dreams, how great it is to try your hardest, and how great it is to follow your dreams together with your friends and significant other while trying your hardest.
And those are, of course, the motifs we hear on Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam (the soundtrack to Disney's television movie of the same name). The soundtrack, like the film, features the still-popular Jonas Brothers, their teen gal pal Demi Lovato and a cadre of other talented Disney teens singing catchy, mostly positive pop songs that tunefully narrate their mostly positive summer music-camp experiences.
Crude or Profane Language
Drug and Alcohol Content
Other Negative Elements
Demi Lovato and Joe Jonas sing a couple of nice ballads expressing their appreciation for each other in the purest possible terms. "We're like different stars/But you're the harmony to every song I sing," they tell us on "Wouldn't Change a Thing." Similar mutual admiration pops up on "You're My Favorite Song," which reads, "If I heard you on the radio/I'd never want to change a single note/It's what I'm trying to say all along/You're my favorite song."
Other songs on this soundtrack—if not most of them—express appreciation for friendship, stress the importance of living in the moment and major on the necessity of taking healthy risks. "What We Came Here For," for example, touches on practically all of those themes: "You're gonna know in your soul/This is what we came here for/So live it loud, here and now/This moment, it won't be ignored." There's more of the same on "This Is Our Song" ("This is our song/That's all that matters/'Cause we all belong/Right here together").
"Brand New Day" is fairly boilerplate Disney, and yet when I first heard Lovato sing, "I'm gonna sing/I'm gonna dance/I'm gonna write/I'm gonna play/I'm gonna try my hand at everything," it occurred to me that many kids don't try much these days, preferring the relative safety of the family couch. Lovato, by example, tells us there's far more to life than that. Equally positive is the fact that on "It's Not Too Late," she's determined to make up for some past misdeed: "I never meant to let you all down/Now I've got to try/To turn it all around."
Camp Rock 2's storyline pits its campers against rival ones at a performance-oriented camp. And if there's anything that might possibly be classified as objectionable—at least in the way this music tells the tale—it might be some of the aggressive attitudes expressed. "Tear It Down" and "Fire" sport rap-style posturing. "I dare you to challenge me," a character named Finley sings on the latter. "You'll be begging for mercy." Similarly, Finley and his pal Martin dabble in mild rebellion when they brag about how they "won't stop at a red light" and how they're "out of control" in "Walkin' in My Shoes."
"Heart and Soul," sung by the Jonas Brothers, lifts up David Lee Roth, Mick Jagger, Axl Rose and Christina Aguilera as examples of how to really rock.
Camp Rock 2 is exactly what you'd expect it to be: full of clean, crisp, generally inoffensive pop that never descends into tawdry sexuality, winking double entendres or foul language. It celebrates the idea of following your dreams, which can be a mixed message. But more that that it elevates friends and fun and not getting stuck in a rut. So I guess that good thing you can count on in life really is a Disney soundtrack.