November 21, 2017

The Advocate's Toolbox

Marc Anthony Returns, Selena Gomez’s ‘Stars’, and More Zombies | Teens Review Music and Games

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If you’re under the age of 20, you might only know Marc Anthony for his clothing line, or that his ex-wife is Jennifer Lopez (who also has a clothing line). On 3.0, he returns to his Latin roots, which will appeal to salsa fans. If you’re over the age of 20, you might only know Selena Gomez as Justin Bieber’s girlfriend, but our reviewer thinks that Stars Dance proves that she has a lot more going for her than that. And it seems like we will never run out of new games for zombie fans, as demonstrated by the latest release, The Walking Dead: 400 Days.

3.0, Marc Anthony (Sony Music Latin)

3.0Marc Anthony has had a long and successful career; having sold more 11 million albums worldwide. Many consider him a top player in the industry and a true diplomat of Latin music. His newest album, 3.0, is his 11th studio album to date and is very much what fans of his expect—an integration of pop, samba, and Latin folk sound. What Anthony does add on 3.0 is a little more emphasis on pure salsa. Continued collaboration with longtime partner Sergio George on the production end helps Anthony put forth a solid album. As a Marc Anthony fan, I found the album to be a great listening experience with passionate vocals, romantic charm all rolled up in a hypnotic dance beat. But I recognize that his days of mainstream pop chart toppers are probably over. This album is more for salsa purists and fans of Latin music, as listening to the whole album can sound a little bland and repetitious. Check out the following tracks:  “Volver a Comenzar,” “Cautivo de Este Amor,” and “Vivir Mi Vida.”—Latyese M., Grade 12, Floral Park (NY) Memorial High School

Stars Dance, Selena Gomez (Hollywood)

Stars DanceStars Dance is Gomez’s fourth studio album but her first solo attempt and the results are acceptable. Having watched Gomez’s rise to stardom on Disney’s The Wizards of Waverly Place, I can say that I am a fan of hers and would like to see her succeed. And in many ways she does. This album shreds the Disney image and launches her into the adult world. Gomez shows her take on electronic dance music with her own blend of synth and electro pop. She tries to bridge the gap between her two worlds with music that will find a following with her teen fans and their parents. It is a big risk and although the album is nothing earth shattering, her music is accessible, danceable, and pretty memorable. Stars Dance proves that Gomez has the staying power to play in the big league, and with a little more work she can definitely give her on-again, off-again boyfriend, Justin Bieber, a run for his money. Tracks to check out are “Come & Get It,” “Slow Down,” “Birthday,” and “Love Will Remember.”—Ryan A., Grade 10, Floral Park (NY) Memorial High School

The Walking Dead: 400 Days (Tell Tale Games)

The Walking Dead 400 DaysIf you are a zombie fan or a Walking Dead fan, this game is for you. 400 Days is really a bridge game between Season 1 and 2 of The Walking Dead: The Game and comes at a bargain price. Like other Walking Dead games, the focus here is on the strong narrative over shooting or gore and horror. In this installment, you play as one of five different characters within five different stories. Each one takes place at some point in time within a 400-day span at a truck stop in Georgia. Missing posters line a littered bulletin board where you select your character in any random order.

One episode can start on the Day 200 of the apocalypse while another might start on Day Two of the outbreak. Each one does have a common piece that links them together and the game does not seem disjointed or confusing. What is really cool is that the game play in each vignette does not seem repetitive or boring. That is due to the choice system that is built into The Walking Dead gaming system. The only disappointment here is that 400 Days is so concentrated that it only takes about a hour and a half to get through all five vignettes. Again, it is a bridge game, so you kind of know this but of course you still want more. The action and drama are definitely worth it. Rated: M for Mature. Platform: Play Station 3, Xbox 360 and PC.—James M., Grade 11, Floral Park (NY) Memorial High School

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