Tuesday, April 29, 2008

New Madonna Album: Hard Candy

Yay! I downloaded it this morning and listened to it at work while I was in the lab today.

It wasn't what I expected. Hearing 4 Minutes gave me the impression it would be more urban/hip-hop than her other albums. It's not. It's got a little more bass than her other music, but overall it basically feels like a cross between Ray of Light and Confessions on a Dance Floor.

I didn't immediately take to any of the songs because I liked 4 Minutes so much; after the first listen it was still my favorite. But this album is a grower. The more you listen to it, the more you like it. And every time I listen, a different song becomes my favorite.

They're all good. Except for one part in Give It 2 Me - the first time I heard it, I actually burst out laughing, thinking, "Why in the world did she put this in here!?", but then I listened to it again, and was still funny, and weird, but I actually really liked it because it's in stereo and things switch back and forth between my ears when I wear my headphones... though, if you don't listen to it in stereo, it's totally annoying.. but only for 30 seconds.

That aside, it's no I Love New York. I hate that song. I hate that it even exists. So, that's a bonus. Nothing like that on this album.

Hard Candy is very Madonna.

Quick rundown:

Candy Shop - Totally made me wonder what Turkish Delight was (so I looked it up - it seemed dirtier when I didn't know)... and the line that repeats "My sugar is raw, sticky and sweet" seriously sounds dirty the way she sings it. So, again, totally Madonna, and I love her for it. "I'll be your one stop Candy Shop." I imagine this single will be released to the radio.

4 Minutes (To Save the World) - You've probably already heard it. I like it. It's the most hip-hoppy the album gets. If you wanna call it that. PS, have you seen this video? It's way cool. You can see inside things...

Give It 2 Me - Again, weird part in the middle where she sings "get stupid" repeatedly (or if those aren't the words, that's what it sounds like). Otherwise, the song's really cool. It has the lines "Got no boundaries and no limits, if there's excitement, put me in it. If it's against the law, arrest me. If you can handle it, undress me." It's got a good beat. Very catchy. Worth a download if you can handle the stuff in the middle.

Heartbeat - Starts out with the sound of a beating heart! She does sound effects like that a lot, so it makes me happy. This kinda has more of a hip-hop feel because of the lyrics and the dude in the background making sighing sounds. It's about dancing (surprise). I flip back and forth between wondering if she's too old for the lyrics, and thinking she's timeless and can do anything. "See my booty get down" is not something I thought I'd hear her say, but she still has a great body, so who am I to judge? Besides, I really dig the chorus and the line "It makes me feel it in my heartbeat", which is just cool imagery to me.

Miles Away - Is totally sad. It's about how her lover seems to love her more when they're miles away. "I guess we're at our best when we're miles away." "You always have the biggest heart when we're 6000 miles apart." It's still got a nice beat to it, but still, sad... I'm not sure how she does it. I like this one. (I could probably say that after all of them though...)

She's Not Me - The beginning of this song reminds me of something from the 80s, but it changes pretty quick. It's about some girl stealing her man by basically becoming her. I think. The lyrics are... interesting. I can't really sit still while I listen to it, and like halfway through the song it completely changes into something else, and it's still really good. Then it changes back and there's a whistle! And then there's a line where she says something about someone "pimping your style" and I realized that the 50 year old Madonna is way more hip than I am because I don't know what she's talking about. And then some dude sings... and he's not really that good. And he sings too high... So, this is not my favorite song on the album, but I really dig how it changes in the middle. It's also the second longest song on the album, so I think that some of it could have been cut and it would have been an awesome song.

Incredible - This song is so happy and optimistic! This is the longest song on the album. "Just one of those things when everything goes incredible and all is beautiful... And all those things that used to get you down have no effect at all, 'cause life is beautiful." It's cool... and again, in the middle of the song, it kinda changes, then changes back, then changes again. I don't know why, but that really impresses me. This is totally Ray of Light meets Dance Floor all meshed into one song. To me, this is the most "Madonna" a song could get. Many things about it remind me of other Madonna songs, but not enough to actually let me name which ones. It's incredible. (As her lyrics state.)

Beat Goes On - I actually heard an early rough cut of this song, and I think I might have actually liked the rough cut slightly more. But, this song is still waaaaay good. It's got a great beat and actually has better lyrics than the first version. Kanye West raps on this song, and the only thing that bothers me is when he says he's like a vampire during a full moon... (did he mean werewolf?) but whatever... I really like the "'Cause I know exactly where to get that. Did you get that?" part. Also, they sing "Get down, beep beep, gotta get up offa your seat," a lot... and I have this sneaking suspicion that it's from some disco song from the 70s, but I don't know which one It's kind of driving me crazy. So, if you know, tell me.

Dance 2night - This is the other Justin Timberlake song, and he keeps it manly with no falsetto, so it's got the Nikki stamp of approval. Actually, this song has a lot of early 80s Madonna in it, except lower, since she doesn't sing that high anymore. But it still has a 2000s Madonna message. "You just have to give more, more, more than you ever have before." Totally has a retro Madonna feel though, even with Justin singing with her.

Spanish Lesson - Starts with a guitar! And I think that learning Spanish from Madonna is probably not a good idea. While she is "translating" things for you, I don't think they are exactly right... per se... But it's a neat little song. It has that fun sort of Latin/mariachi kinda of thing going on. It's cute, and fun, and pretty interesting. Sample lyrics: "Entiendo means I get it. Siempre means that I won’t forget it." (Entiendo literally means "I understand" and siempre means "always".) But the song is catchy! =)

Devil Wouldn't Recognize You - I could almost imagine this song on the Music album, if it were done with a guitar instead. It has the sound of a rainstorm in the middle of it, making this at least the 4th song of hers with a rainstorm in it... Maybe it would almost fit on Bedtime Stories... This song has the most words, and probably the most soul. I don't know how to describe it. It's very good. "Now I'm sober, No more intoxicating my mind." Two thumbs up. I like it so much it will NEVER see radio air time. Especially at a little over 5 minutes.

Voices - Also has Justin Timberlake in it for like, a line. This is very cool conceptually and worked for me when finalized. "Who is the master and who is the slave?" is the basic question in this song. "Are you walking the dog? ... Is that dog walking you?" I like it. It's kinda darker in feel, has a bunch of stringed instruments in it... moody. Neat all around. On a given day, this would be my favorite song on the album. There's a lot of different sounds to it, you can tell there's an orchestra there. Very cool.

Ring My Bell (Bonus Track) - Interesting, kinda catchy, kinda annoying... not much to this song. It's good, but didn't do a lot for me. They say "ring my bell" a whole lot. Like, every other line. Maybe if that meant more to me, I'd like the song more.

Yay! Probably more than you bargained for... but, those are my thoughts on the new album.

Overall, two thumbs up. The following tracks are definitely worth it:
4 Minutes
Beat Goes On
Dance 2night
Devil Wouldn't Recognize You

Oh, also, it really annoys me that they're titled Give It 2 Me and Dance 2night. Just thought I'd throw that out there...

End Blog.

1 comment:

Alejandro ~dro~ said...

In "Beat Goes On", the beep beep line is from Donna Summer's "Bad Girls".