Artist Overview Most successful solo artist in the history of the US Billboard Hot 100. Considered blueprint for success and innovation in mainstream music. Over 300 million records sold worldwide. First album released in 1983. Also successful as a singer- songwriter, record producer, dancer, film producer, film director, fashion designer, entrepeneur and philantropist. Personal fortune estimated between $325 and $600+ million.
Typical album artwork to right;Deluxe album artwork below.
Lead single, her 38th Top Ten hit in the US. Produced by Madonna & Martin Solveig. Featured guest verses and backing vocals from rappers Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. In the same vein as Avril Lavigne’s old spunky pop “cheer-leader” sound. Worked well on Superbowl but not on radio.
Highest-rated Super Bowl in history: 112 million viewers, more than the actual game. Sequence: “Vogue”, a mash-up of “Music” with LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem” and “Sexy And I Know It”, followed by “Give Me All Your Luvin’” (with Nicki Minaj & M.I.A.), “Open Your Heart”, “Express Yourself” (with Cee-Lo) and “Like A Prayer” for the finale.
The Superbowl performance and mild controversy over M.I.A.’s “obscene gesture” see album pre-orders shoot through the roof. Album’s first week sales in excess of 740,000 copies worldwide.
Catchy 2nd single, released March 2nd, 2012. Yet to chart significantly. Co-produced with tech-house DJ Benny Benassi and his cousin Alessandro, who acted as translator. Music video featured Ukrainian dance troupe Kazaky as well as a number of fashion models. Attracted criticism for weak lyrics, similarity to both her own and others’ works and the mixture of religious and homoerotic imagery in the music video.
Standard Edition: Gang Bang: Dubstep wobble towards end is particularly pleasure. 4/5. I’m Addicted: Forgettable. 2/5 Turn Up The Radio: Good. 4/5. Some Girls: Good. 3.5/5. Superstar: Very 90s. 4.5/5 I’m A Sinner: Good. 4/5 Love Spent: Another winner. 5/5Needs to be a single! Masterpiece: Stand-out. 4.5/5 Falling Free: Perfect wrap-up to album. 4.5/5Additional Smirnoff Nightlife Edition tracks: Beautiful Killer: Remiscent of No Doubt. 4.5/5 Best Friend: My favourite track from this whole era. 5/5
A couple of duds in the middle but still worth buying in full. ‘Smirnoff Nightlife’ Edition is well worth downloading for additional tracks “Beautiful Killer” and the AMAZING “Best Friend” as well as five quality remixes. The album flows well, boasting great production and solid vocals from the Queen of Pop. For all her attempts to cater to the current fever for electro and house, Madonna actually shines best on the slightly slower, left-field tracks. Leaving the made- for-radio sleazefests to the likes of Rihanna would have improved this whole set a million times fold.