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The New Album Saga: Part IV - Madame X

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26 minutes ago, rebelheart93 said:

please don't visit my profile just to attack me :ahh:

I became her fan in 2005 after one week of my grandfather death and I was so devastating...

and she saved me through MTV...she gave mee life again

but when I bought american life to complete my collection one year after, I fell instantly in love with this album....especially x-static process and mother & father

In 2003 I was 10 and I was not interested in any album...I used the radio a lot

you still don't understand no one gives a shit about sales...just you and a few people in this forum

I visited your profile to see when you became a fan, I thought that was obvious and it's also relevant to this particular back and forth.

Did I ever say that I cared how many albums she sells? NO, I did not. I only pointed it out because it shocks me that Madonna, who YES cares about money, would take the risk of using the same producer from her most panned album. I don't understand how you can't see that.

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1 hour ago, *mlvc* said:

Well, he was the man partly responsible for one of her lowest selling albums ever and the first time she didn't have a hit song off of an album unless you count "Die Another Day" which doesn't count and was tacked on.

Record sales don't equate with quality.  Otherwise, Hootie and the Blowfish would never have sold 13 million albums or whatever.  Or "Achy Break Heart" wouldn't have been one of the biggest selling singles of all time.  Look at a group like the Velvet Underground.  They never sold anything, but they're considered one of the most influential bands that ever existed.  How many views have crap like "Gucci Gang" or that terrible "watch me whip, watch me nae-nae" song gotten?  Popularity does NOT mean something is quality. 

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22 minutes ago, Luiz Ribeiro said:

 

Oh my God, now the lunatics are comparing different TIMES albums, with different TECHNOLOGIES, with a different external social and political environment .... go f ...madonna-side-eye.gif

Comparing quality of music doesn't make anyone a lunatic.

I'm not sure who exactly you are referring to, but I've seen EROTICA and RAY OF LIGHT discussed as some of her previous experimental albums. The comparisons being made of MX and AL are solely based on the heavy Mirwais involvement and his use of a vocoder in 2019 isn't altogether different than when he used it in 2000 or 2003 although he turned it up to 100 when he used it on MX.

M stopped working with other producers because she wanted a new sound. I see MX as a continuation of her work with Mirwais from MUSIC and AL.

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7 minutes ago, momosfantasy said:

Record sales don't equate with quality.  Otherwise, Hootie and the Blowfish would never have sold 13 million albums or whatever.  Or "Achy Break Heart" wouldn't have been one of the biggest selling singles of all time.  Look at a group like the Velvet Underground.  They never sold anything, but they're considered one of the most influential bands that ever existed.  How many views have crap like "Gucci Gang" or that terrible "watch me whip, watch me nae-nae" song gotten?  Popularity does NOT mean something is quality. 

I don't disagree with that, however, we are talking about Madonna and almost everything she did, aside from EROTICA because of the SEX book scandal, was typically a staggering success. As I pointed out in one of my previous posts in this thread, I think most M fans think at a higher level and have different expectations that the folks who like "Gucci Gang."

As for Hootie and the Blowfish, CRACKED REAR VIEW put off the songs "Hold My Hand" "Let Her Cry" and "Only Wanna Be With You." Also, Darius Rucker is a very talented musician.

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1 hour ago, *mlvc* said:

There's nothing wrong with anything I have said. I didn't say that I hated AL, I don't, but it's not one of my favorites. And I'm sorry, but low sales indicates that most people didn't like it and it received some very brutal reviews. And before you say, "reviews don't matter" I believe almost everyone on this board was very interested about MX receiving mostly rave reviews and the reviews which weren't good were scoffed at. I agree that AL is adventurous, and not altogether bad, aside from "American Life" the song which is, TO ME, atrocious. EROTICA and RAY OF LIGHT are superior albums to AL, I believe we can almost all agree on that. Now, since you want to compare MUSIC and AL, let's take a look at the credits and which one was almost solely driven by Mirwais. The first line is writers, the second line is producers.

Let's look at MUSIC:


1.    "Music"    
MadonnaMirwais Ahmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
3:44
2.    "Impressive Instant"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
3:37
3.    "Runaway Lover"    
MadonnaWilliam Orbit
MadonnaOrbit
4:46
4.    "I Deserve It"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:23
5.    "Amazing"    
MadonnaOrbit
MadonnaOrbit

3:43
6.    "Nobody's Perfect"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:58
7.    "Don't Tell Me"    
MadonnaAhmadzaïJoe Henry
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:40
8.    "What It Feels Like for a Girl"    
MadonnaGuy SigsworthDavid Torn
MadonnaSigsworthMark "Spike" Stent

4:43
9.    "Paradise (Not for Me)"    
AhmadzaïMadonna
AhmadzaïMadonna
6:33
10.    "Gone"    
MadonnaDamian LeGassickNik Young
MadonnaOrbitStent

3:24

Now AMERICAN LIFE:


1.    "American Life"    
MadonnaMirwais Ahmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:58
2.    "Hollywood"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:24
3.    "I'm So Stupid"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaïMark "Spike" Stent (add.)
4:09
4.    "Love Profusion"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
3:38
5.    "Nobody Knows Me"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:39
6.    "Nothing Fails"    
MadonnaGuy SigsworthJem Griffiths
MadonnaAhmadzaïStent (add.)

4:49
7.    "Intervention"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:54
8.    "X-Static Process"    
MadonnaStuart Price
MadonnaAhmadzaï
3:50
9.    "Mother and Father"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:33
10.    "Die Another Day"    
MadonnaAhmadzaï
MadonnaAhmadzaï
4:38
11.    "Easy Ride"    
MadonnaMonte Pittman
MadonnaAhmadzaï

5:05

This is clutching at straws, really. First 2 singles off "Music" were big hits and both were produced by Mirwais. In fact, the only song that flopped as a single off that album was NOT his production (What If Feels Like...). Orbit's songs on "Music" are undoubtedly the weakest tracks on "Music". "Future Lovers" was the only Mirwais contribution to "Confessions..." and it's a highlight of that record. Now, I get that you make not be a fan of "American Life" as an album and Mirwais as a producer, that's down to personal taste in the end but trying to equate sales with artistic quality to somehow justify how you feel about that is a slippery slope to get down on. I mean, Mr Blobby and Crazy Frog hit #1 un UK but I don't think there's a single person under the sun who would argue they had any artistic merit :).

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1 minute ago, kesiak said:

This is clutching at straws, really. First 2 singles off "Music" were big hits and both were produced by Mirwais. In fact, the only song that flopped as a single off that album was NOT his production (What If Feels Like...). Orbit's songs on "Music" are undoubtedly the weakest tracks on "Music". "Future Lovers" was the only Mirwais contribution to "Confessions..." and it's a highlight of that record. Now, I get that you make not be a fan of "American Life" as an album and Mirwais as a producer, that's down to personal taste in the end but trying to equate sales with artistic quality to somehow justify how you feel about that is a slippery slope to get down on. I mean, Mr Blobby and Crazy Frog hit #1 un UK but I don't think there's a single person under the sun who would argue they had any artistic merit :).

THIS!

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15 minutes ago, kesiak said:

This is clutching at straws, really. First 2 singles off "Music" were big hits and both were produced by Mirwais. In fact, the only song that flopped as a single off that album was NOT his production (What If Feels Like...). Orbit's songs on "Music" are undoubtedly the weakest tracks on "Music". "Future Lovers" was the only Mirwais contribution to "Confessions..." and it's a highlight of that record. Now, I get that you make not be a fan of "American Life" as an album and Mirwais as a producer, that's down to personal taste in the end but trying to equate sales with artistic quality to somehow justify how you feel about that is a slippery slope to get down on. I mean, Mr Blobby and Crazy Frog hit #1 un UK but I don't think there's a single person under the sun who would argue they had any artistic merit :).

Plus WIFLFAG had that crazy wild music video to a remix that isn't on the album (btw that video is SO Madame X)

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I’m loving I don’t search I find - I think it should be longer though - other songs I think are too long and repetitive but so far I’m enjoying it 🤗

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40 minutes ago, kesiak said:

This is clutching at straws, really. First 2 singles off "Music" were big hits and both were produced by Mirwais. In fact, the only song that flopped as a single off that album was NOT his production (What If Feels Like...). Orbit's songs on "Music" are undoubtedly the weakest tracks on "Music". "Future Lovers" was the only Mirwais contribution to "Confessions..." and it's a highlight of that record. Now, I get that you make not be a fan of "American Life" as an album and Mirwais as a producer, that's down to personal taste in the end but trying to equate sales with artistic quality to somehow justify how you feel about that is a slippery slope to get down on. I mean, Mr Blobby and Crazy Frog hit #1 un UK but I don't think there's a single person under the sun who would argue they had any artistic merit :).

I'm not clutching at straws. Why do I need to keep explaining that I am pointing out facts? I'm stating that AL was critically panned and is also, based on my interactions, not a casual fan favorite, maybe hardcore fan favorite. I also want to point out that I do like AL, but I have to be in a certain mood to listen to it. I also like MX, it's just a bizarre record.

As for how MUSIC performed. Yes, "Music" was a smash hit, it was simple with some amazing production - I didn't say I don't like Mirwais' production, but he either knocks it out of the park or misses the mark entirely. As for the second single from MUSIC, "Don't Tell Me," that song greatly benefited from Joe Henry's songwriting - I think some of M's greatest songs were penned by him. As for WIFLFAG, I don't consider that a flop, it actually did quite well with sales, I think the DVD alone sold quite a lot, but I would have to look that up - it just didn't get into the top 10 on the hot 100.

As for Orbit's contributions to MUSIC, I quite enjoy "Runaway Lover" and "Amazing."

I think the work that Mirwais did on MUSIC was far superior to his work on AL - that is an opinion.

If we want to further look at opinions we can look at critical reviews. MUSIC received an average score of 80 while AL received a 60, although to be fair I think MUSIC probably had more "official" reviews. Now, having said that other albums have received low critical scores, but for the sake of this discussion I'm only talking about Mirwais' work. I believe MX is on par with MUSIC when it comes to critical acclaim.

As for commercial success equating quality, I DO NOT believe that. I'm just comparing M's album that she did solely, or almost solely, with Mirwais to her other albums which performed much better up until that point. I can't count MDNA on because M's popularity was beginning to wane, even HC only performed well because of Justin T. I listen to a multitude of indie and underground artists who sell or sold very few albums. Have you ever heard of Charlotte Martin, Emilie Autumn or Eva Cassidy? Eva Cassidy is dead, but these ladies don't sell a lot of music but I think what they put it is phenomenal.

At the end of the day being attacked by fellow fans because I made a statement that AL wasn't all that popular and having to defend myself so vehemently is quite exhausting. 

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3 minutes ago, wtg1987 said:

Bit off topic but I hated Runaway Lover and Amazing - she should have replaced those songs with la petite and Arioso and maybe Run 😉

I think "La Petite" was tossed because it was basically "Little Star" all over again. "Arioso" SHOULD have been on the album, "Run" is just ok for me, but I like the way she delivers the vocal.

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9 minutes ago, *mlvc* said:

I'm not clutching at straws. Why do I need to keep explaining that I am pointing out facts? I'm stating that AL was critically panned and is also, based on my interactions, not a fan favorite.

American Life is the definition of a fan favorite.  It's one of my favorite Madonna albums.

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My review, remember, is just MY opinion, not yours. So no one holds the absolute truth.

Medellin - 6/10

A cool song up, to be on the album only and not as a lead single. Maybe if she was not single we could want her as a single? We will never know. 
What bothers me in music is precisely the solo parts of Madonna, where I found the way to pronounce the words a bit tacky.

I Rise - 3/10

Sounds like a B-Side or Demo .... can go unnoticed totally.

Crave - 6/10

After much listening, now I can hear better. A cool and ordinary song only. It could be done by any singer, literally.

Future - 5/10

For me, a recycled version of UB, but without the originality.

Dark Ballet - 10/10

A work of art for refined ears. No easy pop, from chewed music to people who do not like to think, nothing obvious and with TONS of elements that magically add and sew the music. I can only define it as a work of art.

I Don't Search I Find - 10/10

It's the kind of music that we drool when you listen to a record by another artist. Refreshing, original, different, a breath in the middle of the sameness. Not that the "Deep House" is something innovative, but Madonna puts that rhythm on another level in this song. A song that fits in any environment, an amazing song. What music! I'm so proud!

God Control - 7/10

A good sample of the 70's, but something missing ... the part that she does that "rap" I thought it was very interesting ... maybe it edited in another way was less repetitive. But it's still good music.

Crazy - 9/10
The beginning OMG...so perfect... the rest of teh song I miss something.... something orchestral or somenthing really exploding

Come Alice - 7/10

Again, it had everything to be a perfect song but something missing in the music that explodes it ... give that natural evolution to not get repetitive, maybe the final chorus in some way during the song.

Killers Who Are Partying - 4/10

I expected so much from this song and found it boring for lack of something exciting. When I say this I'm not talking about some dancing element ... but rather elements and instruments that leave an atmosphere about music, as they did for example in Mer Girl and To Have And Not To Hold

Faz Gostoso - 9/10

A pop song with Brazilian influences of first quality, a super well-edited sound and with an incredible class, totally exciting for the dance floors. Only those who attend the current young ballads know how this kind of music excites people on the dance floor. A very good song.

Bitch, I'm Loca - 3/10

A lazy song and nothing innovative, generic. It may spark a niche of consumers, but easily forgettable.

Extreme Occident - 4/10

It has a good reason to be a "bonus track" ..... it's repetitive and ... boring. At least until now ... maybe in the future I'll change my mind. As the sayings say: only the donkeys do not change their minds.

Batuka - 9/10

This is pure "World Music" at its core. What a brave Madonna, what a daring to make your pampered American fans listen to World Music without a hint of pop lol. Madonna manages to put elements that make you feel on that women's wheel, a strong and inspiring, almost primitive song!

 

 

Final = 6.6/10

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3 minutes ago, stfan97 said:

American Life is the definition of a fan favorite.  It's one of my favorite Madonna albums.

Okay, I should have said, "casual fan favorite." As a hardcore M fan I quite enjoy it as well, but as I said, I have to be in the right mood.

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13 minutes ago, *mlvc* said:

No, not "THIS!" because I'm not trying to equate sales to quality. I never did. CHRIST!

 

I know friend, relax, I was not talking directly to you. You have every right not to like AL, we just can not disqualify Mirwaiis, because he is a GENIUS and has helped Madonna a LOT. Not even the Diplo can disqualify, they are super hardworking and creative people, we should not measure them with our rule in our little world that is much more limited than theirs who live music and know what they are talking about. We are just your listeners.

 

Let's keep peace <3

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2 minutes ago, Luiz Ribeiro said:

 

I know friend, relax, I was not talking directly to you. You have every right not to like AL, we just can not disqualify Mirwaiis, because he is a GENIUS and has helped Madonna a LOT. Not even the Diplo can disqualify, they are super hardworking and creative people, we should not measure them with our rule in our little world that is much more limited than theirs who live music and know what they are talking about. We are just your listeners.

 

Let's keep peace <3

I do like AL. How many times do I have to say that?

This entire thread of discussion was started because I found it odd that she used a producer that spawned the album that she loved but harmed her career.

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Ray Of Light, Music and American Life are like a holy trinity. All different, but all excellent. American Life may not be everyone's cup of tea, but it is an album with a strong vision. At the time of its release the album, and especially the title track, were quite controversial and not everyone understood the message behind the music. I think that is the reason the album didn't sell so many copies. It was a rather political and reflective album and not everyone wants music to be a mirror of today's society. I, however, loved it instantly. In my humble opinion Madame X is Madonna's best album since American Life and a perfect evolution of the themes and production that characterized American Life.

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22 minutes ago, wtg1987 said:

I’m loving I don’t search I find - I think it should be longer though - other songs I think are too long and repetitive but so far I’m enjoying it 🤗

I think that all of my faves need to be longer.  Haha. But Dark ballet could use another chorus and I Rise should be longer to be a proper anthem.  Platinum Gold on repeat!!!!!

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6 minutes ago, Luiz Ribeiro said:

 

My review, remember, is just MY opinion, not yours. So no one holds the absolute truth.

 

I Don't Search I Find - 10/10

It's the kind of music that we drool when you listen to a record by another artist. Refreshing, original, different, a breath in the middle of the sameness. Not that the "Deep House" is something innovative, but Madonna puts that rhythm on another level in this song. A song that fits in any environment, an amazing song. What music! I'm so proud!

God Control - 7/10

A good sample of the 70's, but something missing ... the part that she does that "rap" I find very interesting ... maybe it edited in another way was less repetitive. But it's still good music.

Crazy - 9/10
The beginning OMG...so perfect... the rest of teh song I miss something.... something orchestral or somenthing really exploding

Come Alice - 7/10

Again, it had everything to be a perfect song but something missing in the music that explodes it ... give that natural evolution to not get repetitive, maybe the final chorus in some way during the song.

Killers Who Are Partying - 4/10

I expected so much from this song and found it boring for lack of something exciting. When I say this I'm not talking about some dancing element ... but rather elements and instruments that leave an atmosphere about music, as they did for example in Mer Girl and To Have And Not To Hold

Faz Gostoso - 9/10

A pop song with Brazilian influences of first quality, a super well-edited sound and with an incredible class, totally exciting for the dance floors. Only those who attend the current young ballads know how this kind of music excites people on the dance floor. A very good song.

Bitch, I'm Loca - 3/10

A lazy song and nothing innovative, generic. It may spark a niche of consumers, but easily forgettable.

Extreme Occident - 4/10

It has a good reason to be a "bonus track" ..... it's repetitive and ... boring. At least until now ... maybe in the future I'll change my mind. As the sayings say: only the donkeys do not change their minds.

Batuka - 9/10

This is pure "World Music" at its core. What a brave Madonna, what a daring to make your pampered American fans listen to World Music without a hint of pop lol. Madonna manages to put elements that make you feel on that women's wheel, a strong and inspiring, almost primitive song!

I like this review, it's honest.

I think what's really missing from "Killers" is a good first half. The lyrics just seem forced and they don't work.

"Extreme Occident" is pretty, but you're right in your assessment that it's repetitive, although I think several tracks suffer from repetitiveness. 

I've noticed that a lot of M's Latin fan base are loving this record, which makes sense due to the Latin feel of the album. Maybe that's why some can't get into it because half of the album is in languages some of her North American fans don't speak. Just a thought.

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