Realistically this is the follow on from Confessions On A Dance Floor, though less remarkable. Whereas Confessions was mixed as a complete album, MDNA is more like a set of random disco de jour songs that some Madge fan has made a playlist of. Its still a more combative Madonna here, far too many references to guns, bitches and killing people (I’m serious) but the production work is excellent. This is most definitely a make good for the sonic abortion that was HARD CANDY (fyi I use that album to torture political prisoners in Guantanamo Bay)
There are massive, jarring shifts in the character of the album and some of it really doesn’t work. Like why would you plonk MASTERPIECE in the middle of a dance album? (I’ve always thought MASTERPIECE was rubbish, its a daytime tv theme song and it’s only accentuated how pedestrian it is here). BEAUTIFUL KILLER and GIRL GONE WILD are great club tracks, I F*CKED UP is a good track with solid music and the only thing stopping it from being a great song are the childish lyrics and B-DAY SONG is as abortive as that fucking horrible SPANISH LESSON of the aforementioned HARD CANDY. 98% of the tracks are fun, instantly forgettable disco pop confections.
The albums dabbling into 60’s pop sensibilities are good intentioned and some of it works some of it doesn’t but the biggest crime this album commits is in the lyric and vocal departments – this is the laziest and most juvenile set of songs Madonna has ever warbled through – the fact is she doesn’t even try to sing, insisting that she’s edgy by swearing or threatening to kill people. And it’s when she sings in that slightly flat, monotonal falsetto she uses – Madonna becomes just like Rihanna and every other one note pony out there. Its one note in one style through the entire album. Every single vocal arrangement is identical, the rhyming structure is that of an eight year old with downs syndrome and the lyrics are idiotic. (Sorry, but I remember Madge in the 80’s and 90’s where the music had spunk and powerful writing – oh how times have changed)
Outside of that torment MDNA goes along way to restore Madonna’s presence on the pop scene. MDNA will date pretty quickly as there’s no real anthems here but it is fun for its few faults and the fans will get a kick out of it.