Feature

Madonna: MDNA

In MDNA, Madonna makes a strong case for still being “the Queen of Pop.”

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Madonna is out to prove she’s still “the Queen of Pop,” said Keith Caulfield in Billboard.com. This “collection of thoroughly pumping pop tunes, some of which are slices of sheer brilliance,” gives her a strong case. On one hand, Madonna attempts to sound current by collaborating with stars Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. But she also tries to reclaim some past glory by having William Orbit—who co-produced 1998’s groundbreaking Ray of Light—contribute his touch on six tracks. “Borrowing back what has been borrowed from her,” she “sounds contemporary,” but still much like herself, said Neil McCormick in the London Telegraph. Her lyrics and their nursery school rhymes are “as poor as we have come to expect.” But her singing has such cool elegance that she’s “rarely sounded better.” If you value explorations of fresh sonic terrain, look to other artists. But if all you crave is “effervescent electropop”—with its “synth stabs and swells”— MDNA “should do the trick.”

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