The people who brought you My Little Pony and Equestria Girls have good news for parents of would-be Disney divas who just can’t seem to let it go. A trio of new releases from Hasbro Studio’s digital media division are making a dent in the lineup of new music for kids just in time for road trip season.
Friendship Is Magic: Songs Of Harmony and Friendship Is Magic: Songs Of Ponyville (Music From The Original TV Series) are collections of the best songs from the first series in the current My Little Pony franchise. The songs are beautifully composed, and the lyrics are as clever and tightly written as any song on a Disney soundtrack, not to mention a few recent big budget stage musicals.
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Young fans of the series and the theatrically inclined will find a lot to enjoy both albums. Both discs feature mixes of pretty, melodic songs that will end up being sung and sung again into hairbrushes at sleepovers and for elementary school talent shows.
The tracks feature the same voice actors as the series, which is a plus. Pitched from the candy-colored visuals, it is easier to appreciate the level of talent involved in bringing the denizens of the world of My Little Pony to life. These soundtracks are rare examples of franchise tie-ins where the snippets of dialogue actually enhance the recording rather than jar listeners out of the moment.
Fans of Equestria Girls might find parts of the first My Little Pony collections a little treacly, but the range required and the silly fun is so infectious, it’s worth a spin to see if it catches.
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Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks (Original Soundtrack Recording) is loud, rowdy fun. Smart, funny lyrics and hooks that stick to the roof of you and your little rocker’s heads make this collection, the disc or download, to have in high rotation for your summer soundtrack.
Unlike the theatricality and sometimes almost too leisurely pace of the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Collection, Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks is a 10-track, 22-minute quickstep of percussion and guitar driven rock, sunny tunes, and arch, slinky pop. The new collection starts out with the title track, “Rainbow Rocks.” The Rainbooms’ infectious percussion cadence and guitar riff will make parents and kids alike wish it was longer than 1:41.
Forget the latest Equestria Girls character…wait
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Every tune on this disc is good fun. Like the aforementioned Rainbow Rocks, there are some surprise delights on this Equestria Girls album that will have both kids and their grownups turning up the volume. Trixie and the Illusions’ “Tricks Up My Sleeve” is a short, musical game of dozens with great lyrics that sneak up on listeners in the midst of all cheery paens to friendship and self-esteem. Who would have thought a song from the My Little Pony franchise would have lines like, “Don’t mean to brag, don’t mean to boast,
I’m a six-course meal and you’re just burnt toast?” The soundtrack ends with The Rainbooms’ tight harmonies and jangly acoustic dominated song, “Shine Like Rainbows.”
The vocals on Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks might take some getting used to for adults who are accustomed to the breathy phrasing and Broadway belting that seems to defy the respiratory physiology of those wasp-waisted Disney princesses. Parents might find the adjustment period is worth it. All of the songs are far easier for kids and their parents to sing.
If you have a little belter in the family, give these albums a spin. If you don’t already feel the love, you might be surprised how much both of you like My Little Pony and their tween iterations, Equestria Girls. At the very least, you might expand the family repertoire with some new music for kids beyond angsty Elsa and Anna.
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