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Update nieuwe single, album en tour

MadonnaTribe plaatst vandaag inside information over wat er allemaal dit jaar op de planning staat. Het blijven geruchten dus of het allemaal waar is... In ieder geval moeten we nog steeds geduld hebben. Time goes by so slowly for those who wait :)

Volgens de huidige planning zal de eerste single in mei uitgebracht worden. Het album verschijnt dan komende zomer. De vele geruchten over invloeden van wereldmuziek schijnen ook te kloppen!

En om het album te promoten zal Madonna ook weer op tournee gaan. Dit zal net als bij de Rebel Heart Tour in de herfst/winter zijn.

 

  • Gepubliceerd in Buitenlands nieuws

Most anticipated pop albums of 2019: Lady Gaga, Ariana Grande, Madonna and Halsey

These days, women rule pop music, and it's the talented solo females who are going to keep their winning streak going with new albums in 2019. Sure, there are men who are also making excellent art in what can be called the "pop" music space (though that term now encompasses many different styles, and it's tough to pinpoint exactly what pop is in 2019), but looking forward, it's the women who have the public the most excited about what's to come, and they're sure to deliver some incredible new music in the coming months. Here's a look at eight of the most anticipated pop albums likely arriving in 2019.

Ariana Grande - Thank U, Next

When it comes to the charts, 2018 was very good to Ariana Grande. She saw her latest album Sweetener start at No. 1 with ease, and two of its three singles bolted into the top 10, while the third, the criminally-ignored “Breathin’,” stalled just a few spots shy of joining that group. As if that wasn’t enough, her even-more-recent single “Thank U, Next” debuted at No. 1, becoming not only her first leader, but one of fewer than 40 songs to manage such a feat in history. “Thank U, Next” is reportedly both the lead single and the title track of Grande’s upcoming fifth full-length, which was initially expected by the end of 2018, but which will arrive early in 2019 instead.

Avril Lavigne - Head Above Water

After a longer-than-usual absence of over five years, Avril Lavigne returned in late 2018 with her first taste of what’s to come with her single “Head Above Water,” and longtime fans were surprised. Instead of the pop-punk-leaning-pop she’s been peddling for almost two decades, the Canadian singer-songwriter’s new material is much more mature, and it finally sees her trying something completely new. Due in February, Head Above Water will be Lavigne’s sixth full-length.

Carly Rae Jepsen

Fellow Canadian Carly Rae Jepsen exploded into the mainstream in 2012 with the inescapable “Call Me Maybe,” but it was her next collection of pop bangers, Emotion, that solidified her as one of the most consistent musicians in the game, if not necessarily one of the most commercially successful. Now, after several re-releases, she’s ready to move on to the next, and she kicked things off with the single “Party For One,” a catchy tune with a decidedly adult meaning.

Halsey

Halsey’s sophomore solo album Hopeless Fountain Kingdom debuted at No. 1 in 2017, and it spun off her highest-charting single on her own, “Bad at Love,” which climbed all the way to No. 5. Just a few months after she stopped promoting that full-length, she shared her new single “Without Me,” which officially kicked off a new phase of her career, and things are going even better than before. “Without Me” has outpaced any other song she fronts on the Hot 100, replacing “Bad at Love” as her highest solo placement. It previews an as-yet-untitled new album, which will probably come in 2019 to piggyback on the success of the new track.

Lady Gaga - Enigma (probably)

When she’s not writing and recording an entire soundtrack for a film or campaigning to win her first Academy Award (or is that awards?), Lady Gaga has been busy prepping the next era of her career, which may see her return to the electro-pop that made her a global superstar. From the moment she revealed the name of her upcoming Las Vegas residency was to be called Enigma, fans took that as a sign that a forthcoming album would bear the same title, and a number of social media hints dropped by the pop icon since have only backed up that assumption.

Lana Del Rey- Norman Fucking Rockwell

With two songs (“Mariners Apartment Complex” and “Venice Bitch”) already out, it’s likely that Del Rey’s fifth major label album will arrive within the first half of 2019. The record title and the name of at least one of the songs show the artist isn’t shying away from pushing the envelope with this one, which will delight her fans and make some parents cringe.

Meghan Trainor - Treat Myself

Trainor’s third full-length Treat Myself was originally supposed to come out in mid-2018, but after singles “No Excuses,” “Let You Be RIght” and “Can’t Dance” underperformed, it was pushed to early 2019. The album now has a street date of January 25, and with a new single entitled “Genetics” supposedly arriving sometime before that, it seems like Trainor has one more shot at making waves before the title drops.

Madonna

The Queen of Pop hasn’t been coy when it comes to talking about her next album, and at one point, it even seemed like it might arrive at some point in 2018, though that didn’t end up being the case. The untitled effort, her fourteenth proper studio album, will be her first in four years, and it will see the superstar going in a different direction stylistically, which is always the case with her...though what it will sound like is anybody’s guess at this point.

Look Out For

British pop mainstay Ellie Goulding has already started a new era with her single “Close to Me,” and as it’s been four years since her last proper effort, a new album is expected. Singer and actress Ashley Tisdale could finally return to music with her third album Symptoms, though chatter around the project has been going for some time. In between his many projects, super-producer Mark Ronson might finish a new solo album, which is already off to a good start thanks to his Miley Cyrus collaboration “Nothing Breaks Like a Heart.” Up-and-comer Billie Eilish has seen three singles from an upcoming project reach the Hot 100, so an album is sure to come very soon. Jason Derulo is now several singles into what could be an album entitled 2Sides, but by the time it arrives, it's not clear which songs will make the final cut, as some will be years old by that point.

It also wouldn’t be surprising to hear new music from Bruno Mars, Selena Gomez or possibly even Adele, though nothing has been confirmed by any of them yet.

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Nieuwe album komt in 2019

In een interview met WWD heeft Madonna laten weten dat haar nieuwe album in 2019 zal verschijnen. We moeten dus nog even geduld hebben.

"I’m finishing my record, which I’m going to release next year. In between rose mist spray and serums, I’m actually making music. Can’t quit my day job."

  • Gepubliceerd in Buitenlands nieuws

Outrageous Monte Carlo auction includes horseback riding with Madonna in Portugal and more

I have been a longtime supporter of organizations that help our environment and have been so impressed with the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation and their continued efforts to support initiatives around the world in favor of a sustainable ocean. This year the foundation will hold its second Monte Carlo Gala for the Global Ocean, in the heart of Monte Carlo and will feature some of the most amazing live auction items ever offered.

The event held at the Terraces of the Opera of Monte Carlo this month will include live performances by Gloria Gaynor, Nile Rodgers, and Chic. It is chaired by a huge list of celebrities including; Madonna, Li Bing Bing, Orlando Bloom, Adrien Brody, Pierce Brosnan, Gerard Butler, Robert Davi, Andy Garcia, Goldie Hawn, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Olga Kurylenko, Eva Longoria, Diane Lane, Kelly Slater, Robin Thicke and Chris Tucker.

The Gala is hosted by HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco and Global Fundraising Chairman Milutin Gatsby, Olivier Wenden is Executive Director of the Foundation, and the live auction is conducted by Simon de Pury.

Prince Albert tells me, "Donations received at the first edition of our Gala have enabled us to support 40 new projects and international initiatives devoted to safeguarding endangered species, studying the impacts of climate change on the oceans, the sustainable management of Marine Protected Areas and the fight against plastic pollution." Milutin Gatsby adds, “Generosity is the key to our future on this planet and to saving our ocean. Special auction items that “money can’t buy” give guests the possibility to afford unique dream experiences and other high-end pieces and to offer, at the same time, a generous support to a great cause.”

This year's Gala will be dedicated to the Foundation’s eight priority actions including; fighting against plastic pollution, developing the Mediterranean Trust Fund for Marine Protected Areas, conserving marine species facing a risk of extinction, expanding marine protected areas in the Polar Regions, mitigating ocean’s acidification, supporting innovations to challenge marine threats, favoring sustainable yachting practices and promoting environmental education.

Here is an exclusive first look at my favorite live auction items up for the highest bid:

Horseback Riding With Madonna On The Beach In Portugal

Madonna recently moved to Portugal and as part of this priceless opportunity invites the winning bidder to join her in Portugal for an afternoon of riding horses through the forest and the beach. The winning bidder and up to five guests will join the superstar for one of her favorite past times. You will spend an afternoon exploring the natural scenery on horseback with Madonna as your guide.

Portrait Sitting With Famed Photographer Steven Klein While Art Directed By Madonna

A truly unique and extraordinary opportunity to sit for a portrait by this legendary photographer in New York and to have the bragging rights of your photo shoot directed by Madonna herself!

Private Album Preview With Madonna In Her Recording Studio In London

Madonna’s next album will be coming out soon, and before its release, she invites the winning bidder and up to three guests to join her in her London recording studio to preview some of the songs from the album with her.

Read more about the live auctions here.

  • Gepubliceerd in Buitenlands nieuws

Breaking: Madonna confirms her upcoming album will be released in 2018

In the brand-new cover story for Vogue Italia — titled “Just one day out of life,” naturally — it’s confirmed that Madonna, the Queen of Pop, will be releasing new music before the end of 2018. We don’t know much about this new Madonna album, though we do know it was inspired and is an ‘answer’ to the time she’s recently spent in Portugal.

Madonna, who turns 60 years old on Aug. 16, tells Vogue Italia, “Let’s clarify one thing, this interview for Vogue Italia — including the images that accompany it — is about my life in Lisbon, about the year in which I lived there. So it does not make much sense to talk about anything else, right?” (Note that it’s likely that quote went from English into Italian, then back into English.)

She reportedly spent a year in Portugal with four of her six children, and this new Madonna album is inspired by “the landscapes and sounds of Lisbon,” one of the world’s most beautiful cities.

As Vogue Italia says of the new Madonna album, “new musical pieces were born, which will be collected in an album that will be released by the end of the year.”

We also know that for this 14th studio album, which will see release 36 years after her debut single “Everybody” back in 1982, she’s rumored to be working with producer Mirwais, who also worked on her Music and American Life albums. Based on what Madonna herself has said on Instagram, she’s no longer interested in on-cohesive albums with multiple producers.

In February, after Madonna’s manager Guy Oseary posted an old MTV News clip and proclaimed her 1998 album Ray of Light as “one of the greatest albums of all time” (also the first record he worked on with her), she fired back in the Insta comments, “Remember when I made records with other artists from beginning to end and I was allowed to be a visionary and not have to go to songwriting camps where no one can sit still for more than 15 minutes…”

We can only guess this as-yet-untitled new Madonna album features one producer from beginning to end — or at least very few producers — and that Mirwais is one of the bigger names involved.

The August 2018 cover story contains photos taken by Mert & Marcus, with an interview by Xerxes Cook. Vogue Italia says it “wanted to celebrate the most successful musician of all time.”

Back in June Hornet spoke with legendary dance music DJ Junior Vasquez, who discussed whether he felt he and Madonna could truly patch up their relationship to make music magic one more time.

  • Gepubliceerd in Buitenlands nieuws

Patrick Leonard on what to expect from his new album of reimagined Madonna collaborations

A musical multi-hyphenate with a diverse resume that includes co-writing credits with everyone from Leonard Cohen to Jewel, Patrick Leonard’s greatest commercial success came writing songs (and frequently co-producing them) alongside a pop star who kind of, sort of made a splash in the ‘80s: Madonna.

First teaming up with the nascent icon for 1985's The Virgin Tour, their ongoing creative partnership eventually yielded 20-some songs, including three Billboard Hot 100 No. 1s ("Live to Tell," "Who's That Girl" and "Like a Prayer") and beloved classics like "La Isla Bonita," "Oh Father" and "Frozen."

And while Leonard, like Madge herself, isn't one to fixate on the past, he recently found himself returning to those songs thanks to an unlikely source: Instagram.

Joining the social media service at the behest of his kids, he was surprised at the enduring interest in his work with Madonna. That led to him playing a show at Joe's Pub in New York City in late 2017, and following the enthusiastic fan response to that concert, he began toying with the idea of recording reimagined versions of those classic hits.

Today, Leonard launched a Kickstarter for Bring the Circus Home, an album of new versions of many of the songs he co-wrote with Madonna; the tracklist isn't fully set, and fans are encouraged to weigh in on what they're hoping to hear. But it's not just Leonard returning to these songs: Many of the original studio personnel (Guy Pratt, Bruce Gaitsch and Michael Verdick) are teaming up with him to create new takes on these beloved classics. Kickstarter contributions range from $10 (which gets you a digital download) to $100 (nets you a vinyl edition) to $10,000 (at that level, you snag an in-person studio session with Leonard himself).

Ahead of the Kickstarter announcement, Leonard hopped on the phone with Billboard to discuss everything from his first meeting with Madonna to his hopes for this new project to why "Live to Tell" is like their own Beethoven's Fifth.

So with Bring the Circus Home, you're reteaming with a number of the original musicians on these songs. And what would you call them – reworked versions?

They're reimaginings, new versions; full electronic productions. I'm working with Guy Pratt, who played bass on the Like a Prayer album; Bruce Gaitsch who played on Ray of Light and True Blue; Bill Bottrell, who engineered and mixed Like a Prayer; and Michael Verdick, who mixed True Blue.

Have you seen those guys over the years?

There was the occasional thing. Bill and I worked with Leonard Cohen, before he passed, together, and Guy Pratt, I was always in touch with him. But it's the first time we've done this since we did it 30 years ago.

And what was the impetus for it?

It was a bit of a surprise, really. My friend John Lee put together a show at Joe's Pub in New York, directed at Madonna fans discovered via Instagram. I joined Instagram via a dare from my kids and discovered a whole world of Madonna fans. It opened my eyes to the loyalty people have to the music and those songs and subsequently, myself. From that, I thought of many ways of doing it. Right now we're engaged in the process and finding it's lovely to work with the material. It's really good material, and it's nice to have material the fans are familiar with for us to play with -- but to play with it in a way that feels new. It doesn't feel nostalgic at all to me. It's exciting to find a way to realize them in a way that's satisfying.

I'm surprised you didn’t realize the hunger for this material until you joined Instagram. These are such big hits, you really weren't aware?

No, not really. (Laughs) What I occurred to me, and I hadn't framed it this way, but the fans that were in their young teenage years when these records came out, those records were as important to them as records that came out in my teenage years. I don't why that hadn't occurred to me, but it hadn't.

I'm so pleased there's so many fans, I can't tell you. It's lovely to know when I finish this record, there's people who are excited to hear it. It's a luxurious position to be in. I don't have to write hits—I have 16 of them. It's an embarrassment of riches.

And it's material that's part of your life.

I realized at Joe's Pub, I'm not covering this music. It was apparent to me sitting at the piano playing "Live to Tell" that it's an authentic version of "Live to Tell." That hadn't occurred to me (before then).

Which songs are you working on – the hits mainly, or any deep cuts?

It bounces around. Madonna and I wrote 23 songs in total and 16 were hits; I'll choose from the 16, but songs that weren't necessarily hits but were really fun and cool to do, I'll play with them and see if they have a place. And I'm not necessarily doing full songs. Because I can do what I want – for a change – and I'm having fun experimenting. I'm seeing it as something that can be presented as a live show – from that standpoint, whatever music serves the moment I'll use.

You have complete control over this project. When you were working on these songs with Madonna, what was the studio situation? How much say did you ultimately have?

We collaborated well and I certainly have always held to the mutual respect we show each other. Like any collaboration, there are moments where somebody wants one thing and somebody wants another. But also, having been a studio pro as they say, it's ultimately the artist's record. That's where the final decision always rests and I would never push that envelope. But I don’t really remember too many things we disagreed on. We worked fast: I would start something in the studio, then we would work on it together, then by the end of the day or two at most, the song was done.

In past interviews you've said your tastes skew toward prog-rock – do you see any of that in these songs?

Revisiting these songs, as much as they were in the dance-pop market, I don't think I wrote any dance-pop songs. Look at "Live to Tell," "Oh Father," "Like a Prayer" -- these are not dance-pop songs, even though people dance to them. This record is a lot of years later, and I think in all fairness to progressive rock and its devotees, there hasn't been any new progressive rock that I've listened to or come across in 35 years. It's a root for me, but so was James Brown, Stevie Wonder, and Cole Porter, and Gershwin -- they were all part of my background. The prog-rock thing, yeah, I'd rather see Pink Floyd than Red Hot Chili Peppers. If I'm gearing it toward a show, I'm gearing it toward a thread and concept that tells an emotional story. I find that more interesting than a collection of ten songs unrelated.

And what of taking to the stage – will it be all instrumental, or might you have guest vocalists?

Maybe occasionally, but there will be vocals – not a lot – but there will be vocals, and I'll leave it at that. Some human, some not.

Is Madonna aware of this project?

I don't know, I think she might be. I haven't been secretive about it but I don't know. I intend on reaching out to her and inviting her to participate if she'd like to, even if just to observe. Whatever role she takes is fine with me. I'm fascinated with how fun it is to play with these songs. That's where I am right now.

"Skin" is one of my favorites of your co-writes that's not a hit. Might that make the album?

We recently unearthed all the demos for Ray of Light, and I was listening to them, and "Skin" -- the melody, chord changes, that weird little guitar part -- was all there. And I'm fairly certain that one will be part of this.

When you worked with her on Ray of Light, there had been a bit of a gap in between collaborations. And certainly the songs on that one are more contemplative. Did you notice anything different with her around that time?

I wouldn't say I noticed anything one way or the other. We worked on, I don't know, four or five records and took all those years in between, and then we did that, and then there was a project called Hello Suckers [unfinished] from a decade ago we worked on together. When you do that much collaborating, you just fall right back into it. Wherever you are, you are. The one thing I noticed when we were doing Ray of Light was her singing. She was in a slightly different place singing-wise because of Evita, and I think that influenced some of this stuff for her. There had been a lot of focus on singing for her, and it changed things -- but not better or worst, just different.

Were you surprised to hear from her after the gap?

Finding the demos, I found a folder with all of our faxes (from then). The premise was, "this worked really well before, let's try it again." It was just that, it was kind of innocent. If it goes well, we'll do it, and if it doesn't, fine.

"Frozen" is certainly in the "Live to Tell" vein. Do you ever think "let's try to recapture something about that hit?"

When you're writing something, in my career, the word hit never comes into it. You just can't say that word. It's a bad word to say. I remember she asked me if I could write something that was somewhere between The English Patient and Nine Inch Nails, and that's what "Frozen" was.

Revisiting these songs, does it seem like so much time has passed, or are they still fairly familiar to you?

Yeah it's been an interesting thing looking at these songs, I wouldn't have looked at them again… but to be able to play the music for the fans is the main motivation for this. It took me some time, months, to see the music as raw material. The initial reaction to the music was verse-chorus-bridge, and I'm now seeing it as a chef's kitchen. It's a treasure trove of moments, and to select the moments and look at them individually is fun. I'm getting a kick out of this. I've never gone back to material like this. Some of them, "Live to Tell," I wrote 33 years ago. That's a long time ago, man.

Do you remember writing it, or is the memory muddy?

I remember the moment of sitting at the piano and playing the chords. I remember getting up and playing that at the piano and going, "oh that's cool," and writing it down and developing it. At the time I was developing it for a film. The rest of it… I remember recording a demo a little bit, it was a very simple process, and I remember recording with Michael Verdick, and there was something about that one that was special and different than the other ones. Thematically it's like our Beethoven's Fifth – you hear those three notes and you got it. It identifies itself the quickest. I'm looking for intense drama (on this reworking); I really want it to be dramatic. The record is going to be pretty electronic. I'm playing around with those things, playing around with "Cherish" a bit, looking for a way to do that.

So you aren't set on how many songs will be on this, or which songs will be included?

The record is called Bring the Circus Home and I've written a song called "Bring the Circus Home" that will help tell the story and appear a few different times in little versions. I'm doing this as a vinyl-length record, which means 36 minutes. That's when I realized I don't need to do full songs. You don't need an instrumental version of "Live to Tell" with four verses. We'll bend and twist our way through this stuff. It's early in the process and it may change considerably. But with "Oh Father" the musical sequence (on the new version) is different from the record and I expect the same of all of them. Some I might do a narrative version, one of the soft ballads like "Something to Remember," I'll probably stay true to that, that's one of my favorites. A song like that, you can make big, but you shouldn't mess with it too much. It's melodic and lyrical, and that should stay.

Do you see some of them appearing in medley form?

Not like a medley, more like a narrative. Also one of the ways I'm seeing this is like a live performance. So there's the songs, but what I'm hoping to achieve, is when you come to see it live, that's the experience -- it's not just a bunch of different songs. In a live situation, things can be expanded upon, but conceptually it's still the same flow. So that's what I'm working on now, the flow. And playing around with intensity -- how intense can this be? It's fun. (laughs)

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Madonna kondigt nieuwe muziek aan

Madonna brengt binnenkort nieuwe muziek uit. Wanneer de nummers uitkomen, is nog niet bekend.

Op Instagram heeft de zangeres donderdag een foto geplaatst waarop Beautiful Game staat. Op het Met Gala dit jaar liet ze al een voorproefje van dit nummer horen.

Of de zangeres een album of een single gaat lanceren, heeft ze nog niet laten weten. In juli 1983 kwam haar debuutalbum Madonna uit, met de hit Holiday erop. In 2015 bracht Madonna voor het laatst een album uit: Rebel Heart.

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  • Gepubliceerd in Buitenlands nieuws

Madonna's 'American Life': revisiting the divisive album 15 years later

While American Life certainly wasn't the kiss of death for Madonna, her ninth studio album did end one of the winningest streaks in the history of pop. Although the LP—which was released 15 years ago on April 21, 2003—did debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, it became the lowest-selling studio LP of her career up to that point. And the reviews were mixed at best.

The title-track lead single was one of Madonna’s first bona-fide flops, certainly by her standards. It barely cracked the top 40 on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at No. 37. Even worse, it was the object of derision for her stiff, silly rap in the second half where she rhymes “latte” with “shoté” and “MINI Cooper” with “super-duper” and “trooper.” No one wants to hear Madonna rap about her lawyer, manager, agent, chef, nannies, assistant, driver, jet, trainer, butler, bodyguards, gardener and stylist. Not then, and not now. The failure of “American Life” made it hard for the album to recover with subsequent singles “Hollywood,” “Nothing Fails” and “Love Profusion” missing the Hot 100.

But revisiting American Life 15 years later, it deserves more love than it has gotten -- it's perhaps the most underappreciated album of Madonna’s catalog. Listening to it now, it certainly bests Rebel Heart and MDNA, and from a lyrical standpoint, it probably beats 2008’s Hard Candy and maybe even 2005’s beloved Confessions on a Dance Floor. In fact, with its confessional tone and commentary on the American Dream in the President George W. Bush era, American Life is easily one of Madonna’s better lyrical outings.

The strong lyrical perspective is complemented by the cohesive musical vision. Madonna worked with one producer, French electronic savant Mirwais Ahmadzaï, for the entire album—although there was additional production by Mark “Spike” Spent on “I’m So Stupid” and “Nothing Fails”—and they expanded on the folktronica experimentation they did on 2000’s Music. Indeed, if there is one Music song that served as the biggest touchstone for American Life, it's “Don’t Tell Me,” with its twangy trip-hop. Madonna and Mirwais—who are back in the studio working on new music together in 2018—also co-wrote all but three of 11 songs together. With such a tight team, not one of the songs feels out of place (although the dramatic “Die Another Day” from the James Bond film of the same name feels like it should have been sequenced earlier in the record).

In retrospect, American Life—the last truly ambitious album that Madonna has made—also marked the end of a very important phase of her career. Having achieved new artistic depth with 1998’s Ray of Light and continued that creative spirit with Music, she was very much still in risk-taking mode on American Life. You might say those three albums—starting from an electronica base but veering in different directions—amounted to her Berlin Trilogy. On an aesthetic level, this period was Madonna at her Bowie-est.

“Love Profusion,” “Nobody Knows Me” and “Nothing Fails” make for a thrilling three-song sequence that displays varied moods and styles. While glowing with its sweet strumminess, “Love Profusion” faces some troubling uncertainties: “There are too many questions/There is not one solution/There is no resurrection/There is so much confusion.” The zig-zagging “Nobody Knows Me” packs a rock thump and a sense of disillusionment: “This world is not so kind/People trap your mind/It’s so hard to find/Someone to admire.” And “Nothing Fails”—the glorious, gospel-infused centerpiece of American Life—is nothing short of a latter-day “Like a Prayer.”

Elsewhere, “X-Static Process”—co-written by Stuart Price, who Madonna would go on to work with for much of Confessions on a Dance Floor—is a beautiful ballad rich in harmony and emotional directness. You can almost hear echoes of R.E.M. on that and the previous track, “Intervention.” Meanwhile, the solemn, string-laden “Easy Ride” may be one of the best album closers of Madonna’s career. The lyric nods to her notorious work ethic: “I want the good life/But I don’t want an easy ride/What I want is to work for it/Feel the blood and sweat on my fingertips/That’s what I want for me.”

American Life—which still sounds very modern and, in some ways, seems eerily prescient of Trump-era despair—feels more like the Madonna album for now than her recent efforts. It’s not a perfect album—“I’m So Stupid” is still irritating—but it’s the sound of Madonna challenging herself, and us.

 

  • Gepubliceerd in Buitenlands nieuws

Madonna teases possible reunion with Mirwais, the producer behind 'Music' & 'American Life'

Madonna took to Twitter on Tuesday (April 17) to share a clip of herself singing along to a poppy dance track, and one particular hashtag has fans thinking she's reunited with her longtime collaborator Mirwais.

"No This is NOT my new music ------------------ But im having fun in the studio in between takes!! ------------. #music #mirwais #magic," the singer wrote in the caption of the video.

The "Ghosttown" singer confirmed in early 2018 that she has been in the studio working on her 14th record. She's remained cryptic about who she's working with, but by tagging the French record producer and songwriter, many fans are convinced that he's involved. "Is this a hint Mirwais is back in the mix???" one tweeted. "Are you working with #Mirwais again??? Yay!" another wrote.

Madonna and Mirwais previously worked together on three of her albums, including her 2000 record Music, which was nominated for three Grammy Awards and whose title track hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. They also collaborated for 2003's American Life and Confessions on a Dance Floor in 2005.

Billboard has reached out to Madonna's rep for confirmation that she's reuniting with Mirwais but hasn't heard back as of press time.

  • Gepubliceerd in Buitenlands nieuws

From the Record Crate: Madonna – “Erotica” (1992)

Anyone who claims that Madonna’s appeal has only ever been erotic is kidding themselves – she’s so much more interesting than that. Yet from the very start, erotica was certainly a primary element of her appeal. Her voice had a tinge of sexual urgency without ever tipping over into blatantly adult-content. And because anticipation is so much more exciting than release, Madonna’s refusal (mostly) to belt out her pop songs at the top of her lungs, keeping them tightly wrapped in understatement, suggested future pleasures in the bedroom without fully succumbing to them. Just like a virgin touched for the very first time.

But the religion/sex mashup “Like a Prayer” saw a decided turn towards a more provocative exploitation of her sexual starlet image. And hot (very hot) on its heels came “Justify My Love”, in which Madonna limited her vocals even further to the point where she was practically just talking in-tune, making her sound all the more sultry.

Erotica follows on in the manner of the sexual frankness of “Like a Prayer” and the vocal lack of fussiness of “Justify My Love”. The album’s a series of dance tunes, each one on average longer than 5 minutes, that combine to create an aura of erotic indulgence delayed gratification. Somewhat cold and distant, building from the bottom up with its plethora of drum machines and chilly synths, the tunes take a while to sink in; yet Madonna is always there to promise the pleasure will come later. She still wants to take you there, but slowly this time, and you’re damned right at her own pace.

I don’t think she ever sounded as in control as on this album – with the exception, perhaps, of Music. She takes enjoyment from the male objects of her desire, she toys with them, she’s sometimes hurt by them. She realises there’s something a little scary about going “Deeper and Deeper” – in love, if not in sex – but you can rarely hear that tentativeness in her voice. After all, sexual power can never be absolutely complete, because a relationship relies on two people, and that other person can always fuck it up. Yet Madonna sounds as autonomous, as in control of her pleasures, as it’s possible to be, on a smart album that acknowledges the complexities of sexual relationships between flawed members of the ever-so-flawed species we call the human race.

Humanity emerges from the synth soundscapes in the form of an all-pervading soft funk that leans heavily on Doug Wimbish’s bass, particularly on “Waiting”, which could almost be a De La Soul track. I don’t use that comparison lightly; on many occasions Erotica verges on hip-hop, and producer Andre Betts even manages to sneak in a rap on “Did You Do It?” As usually is the case with good artists, the use of hip-hop production techniques contributes an exciting creative aura in which almost anything can happen (it’s the reason why hip-hop is easily the best genre of music in the world today). Madonna’s often spoken-word technique fits in with that aura, as does the unexpected cover of “Fever” (the best since Elvis), and the sampling of LL Cool J on “Bye Bye Baby”. ‘Forget the rules’ she says on that last song, and boy does she manage to live by that mantra throughout the rest of the album.

Reviews were pretty mixed when Erotica first came out, and it still tends to get forgotten amidst discussions about the Queen of Pop, which inevitably focus on Like a Prayer and her numerous hit singles. Truth is that I don’t like it quite as much as a few of her other albums, including the seminal Like a Prayer of course, but also the glorious mess of I’m Breathless (an album that contains the line ‘Hanky panky/Nothing like a good spanky’ and a song called “I’m Going Bananas”), Music, and the slowly unspooling Ray of Light.

Yet Erotica is probably her most coherent statement of intent. It’s an incredibly brave flip of the bird, so much as to say ‘I don’t care what you think’, to everyone who thought her career simply boiled down to the one word of its title.

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