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rebecca

i love how you overthink, rich. there's love in it, and we need it.

my two cents? madonna let us down long ago. her early tracks (holiday, where's the party) revealed a sweet and naive desire to save the world with the beat; i understand that feeling...i even kind of agree with it. it is what madonna went and did with her hopeful dance energy that leaves me feeling short-changed. she went on to use every trick in the book to make us believe that she was the indespensible queen of a what is, as rich has pointed out, a stolen and sampled empire. madonna let us down, she could have laughed and shrugged and admitted she was not the center of the universe. we still would have loved her for being sassy, for being a great dancer, for not holding back. instead she became bitchy and superior: once she asked "where's the party?"....now you get the sense that she knows where the party and that we are not invited. she's a bourgeois characture of her idealistic 26 year-old self. where IS the party, madonna? because i do want to free my soul....maybe after Brittney Spears will come up with something?

moogaboo

Thanks for writing a great review, one that eloquently transcends the typical "this sucks" culture and yet lays waste to the myth of Madonna as Queen Of All Gays.

princemoney

all i have to say about this record which i basicaly barely even think about. i never even looked for the leak. anyways all i have to say is Kelly Osbourne did this whole electro house pop shit like months ago.

if Kelly Osbourne is beating you by 4 months...

nicole

Thank you for being thoughtful & original & inspiring the same in your readers.
Madgie is totally not my kind of music (since I was 10 & had her pins all over my M.O. jacket), but every time she puts out a new CD, there is so much hype I feel like I should give it a listen. Then, time & again, I am just, plain, bored by the lyrics & overall repetitiveness.
I guess she's, like, an institution now & people are scared to criticize her (it.) Wow, I guess the world really does spin round, eh?

Mr. Dr.

jb says: "Ironically, Foxy's advice is the exact point of the album: Take your own life - don't give yourself away to anybody else. You are the master of your identity and ultimately your destiny".

It sounds like either jb is unaware that to "take your own life" means to kill yourself, or is attempting a play on words to twist Foxy's words into "take ownership of your own life." If it's the latter, then I have to point out that Madonna is not a likely poster child for not "giving oneself away." True she hasn't GIVEN herself away, but she certainly has made of a career of SELLING herself away. Everything she has, she owes to adopting new image after new image that are only a means for increasing her appeal. It's not like there's some integrity to herself, but quite the opposite.

Pop Muse

ouch, i don't know what stung worst... probably being lumped in with those other blogs. (hee hee) i'm happy you are leading the parade against Madge. she's an ass, her talent is limited to say the least, that movie gave me a headache. but sometimes our childhood fascinations die hard. i do love the cd, i'd be a liar if I said I didn't, it reminds me of Kylie's "Fever" another gay cd i loved without any intellectualized explaination. I happily take my fourfour spanks though, and hope future PopMuse Posts on New Edition and O'Brien win back his respect.

Aiisha

What? People still think bashing Madonna makes them sound smart and sophisticated!?

Pigs In Shit.

Wow, this is an extremely well written and thought provoking piece! Kudos, Rich.

I do agree with quite a few of your points. I've never been a huge Madonna fan, I surely cannot get through a full album of hers, but she's had some great pop tunes in her heyday. However, her last few endeavors have reaked of this sort of almost desperation (calculation has always been her thing, it's what she does, and admittedly she does it well, but she's never came off as trying too hard), and I think her newest album is her most cynical yet (though it must be said that I think "Hung Up" is her best single in ages, although it is pretty much a non-song and it's 'genius', if you want to call it that,' is all in the sample), it's an obvious pandering to her core demographic, yet they all eat it up without the slightest bit of questioning (don't you find it a bit odd that after her worst performing album and an almost ruined public image, she goes and makes an album that is so limited in it's scope, an album that pretty obviously appeals to those who eat up anything she spits out? Madonna has always said that fame is her drug, and with the whole Die Another Day/American Life/ Me Against The Music fiasco, her grasp on it, or at least her relevance in pop culture, was dwindling).It's rather odd. Especially consdiering that she is so obviously NOT a Disco Diva anymore.

I do agree with you that COADF, and really most of Madonna's output, is sort of faceless and nondescript. But I'd be a liar if I said I didn't enjoy some of the songs on this latest release. As I said earlier, "Hung Up" is an excellent single (though, as I've admitted, there isn't really much to it), "Get Together" is a great filer-house type track, "Isaac" is a really interesting melding of sounds, and "Sorry" has a great bassline.. but really, Madonna has nothing to do with ths. In fact, I think many of these tunes would be much better with, say, Kylie or that chick from The Knife or Annie or whomever singing over them. Madonna's lyrics are constantly unbearable and trite, her vocal melodies are somewhat uninteresting, etc.

And yeah I also agree that Stuart Price has done a bit of a half-assed job with the production/beats here.


Well anyway enough of me, I don't have much to say (and I'm not particulalry articulate) on this issue compared to you anyway. But yeah.. great review man, and an awesome blog as well.

Carly

Here's my question, though, Rich: *does* she really take herself too seriously, or is it us who take her too seriously? I'll give you that the Kabbalah era has been a little meh, but still...

Rich

I've done more thinking about Madonna today than I ever wanted to in my life, so yeah, I totally see your point.

But then, I see Maddyface:

"That's why I called it Confessions on a Dance Floor," Madonna explains. "Most people equate dance music with being fluffy and superficial; it's just about having fun. That's fine, but I can't write 12 songs about nothing. My feelings or point of view inevitably sneaks in."

Pigs In Shit.

It's funny that she hides under this facade of "depth" and "meaning" with her latter albums (or may she really believes what she's saying, who knows) when, really, her songs ARE about nothing, and if they do try and tackle broader issues her words are so trite that you wonder what the point was.

chris

i've finally realised that madonna relies too heavily on image, what you think of with her or associate with madonna is too much to do with the surface...the videos and her looks, if you stripped all that way would the music hold up some of it will, what if she was fat and ugly make so so videos would she still be popular sell millions? like i said image but after hearing "hung up" i was disappointed it was lyrically weak and it was all about the abba sample, she is not a musical genius, there is shallowness with madonna its very calculated not organic its not real enough

madonna seems to borrow alot from people and trends what she is good at is surrounding herself with talented people like best photographers, designers, directors, image makers, producers etc they shape her but you see madonna but is a well crafted illusion made up of hype, image and 'some' good music

only a deluded madonna fan would disagree with what i'm about to write, she isn't a great vocalist she has not got alot of range and power, she is not a daring songwriter and resorts to cliches, she isn't really a producer, what she does is tell her producers to change something and play it again for her until she likes it

madonna is the queen at marketing its about business it has very little to do with music with art, she is just so caclulated, polished and slick but there is no soul there no substance she attracts shallow people, madonna is slowly starting to fade she can't keep this up the dancing, her looks, her body, strip her off these things are you are left with not very much its time to grow up i wish she realises this and matures a bit

mfcohen

Thanks for your eloquent critique on the hyping of Madonna. I'm just frightened by the fact that despite her mimicking abilities she hasn't yet learned out to blink in a human-like manner. I guess that something the reptilians haven't figure out yet. I will say, I did like her much better in the good ol' days when she was just a big whore and not a pontificating hypocrite.

mfcohen

p.s. i'm surprised nobody found anything slightly ironic about the fact that the first five minutes (as far as i could stand to watch!) of her "documentary" were about her need to become more humble and minimize her tremendous ego as part of her "desire for spiritual growth" . ummmmmmmm......try not making a documentary about yourself for starters. DOH!

Kyrie

I guess I can't really complain about free music, but, when it comes to wasting the precious life of a CD in a pack of 100 for $7, I have to stand up. This album was hardly worth the 60 MB I had to spare for a night to store it and burn it, or the 30 minutes I spent waiting for it to finish. With only a few likable tracks it's hard to find any depth at all in any of her music. I've found more depth in Britney Spears' first CD than in 'Confessions on a Dance Floor.'

When music is supposed to be not only fun but a social commentary, and with a heavy title like 'Confessions' carries, you expect to hear SOMETHING of substance. Madonna fails to deliver, other than a few fun beats that you might be able to dance to mindlessly, but listening to it would be utter torture.

nyc

Honestly, guys, the fact that you're all dissecting Madge - whether positive or negative - is yet another job done for Madonna. Somewhere, she is smiling.

Shouldn't you be defending lesser-known artists or, say, reading Hobbes rather than analyzing (to death) an established performer destined for the history books who can still whip crowds into a frenzy over twenty-two years into her career, regardless of intent, meaning, or quality?

Really, those who "hate" Madonna or her product so passionately fuel the iconic hype. Keep it coming and the legend will just grow.

brad

can someone please justify how madonna can spend $20,000 on diamond eyelashes when she performed 'hung up' on mtv ema's?? wouldn't that money be better spent elsewhere like on charity, its not like anyone can notice the difference,

she is such a hypocrite and has has double standards how can we take her seriously when she says shes humble and wants us to give to charity acting like that, she seems so childish and needs to learn not to be so shallow and into her looks so much but its the hype that makes people believe she is this 'queen of pop' wake up people don't be sucked in by the hype and media she exploits!!

Fresh

MuthaFUCK Madonna.

There I said it.

Michael K

Rich I don't usually read articles that long, but that shit was hot. And we know we see eye to eye on this madness.

chad

"Driving in my Mini Cooper and I'm feeling super-duper"

And that's just about all I want to hear. 'Nuff said.

Gary

And to think that I used to bartender for her parties in Miami...

JUSTICE

all i know is this. i hate cats, yet you wont find me on websites posting to death how much i hate cats and cant believe that people like cats cuz cats are culturally irrelevant, unoriginal, lame, bony and old.

give a girl a break! she's sold over 150 million albums of music. that is like a bajillion minutes of aural pleasure. lets see you do that.

haters.

love you madonna!

xo

Jim

oh god- criticizing Madonna? what will they think of next.

janine

Look Madonna fans, I've been a lifelong Prince fan so I know how it feels when something you love has become culturally irrelevant. It happened to me and now it's happening to you. If Prince has been any indication, the live shows will never, ever disappoint. Take solace in that.

Mercy

Ya know, you just sound kinda bitter and weird.

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