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About Herfaceremains

  • Birthday August 23

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    Love, food, music, magic, learning, sharing, meditating, creating, writing, ascending...and Madonna.
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    Live To Tell

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  1. Great! Thanks for clarifying. I understand better now. All love and light here. Nothing personal. I’m only here to discuss Madonna.
  2. I appreciate your explanation, but you did state they were sort of alike in how you viewed them. My bad for asking you to share your opinion in greater detail. I obviously misunderstood, but it was an invitation to debate. That’s what a forum is. Prime example of why there is no longer much of an active Madonna forum.
  3. I’m interested in hearing more about what you actually mean about it being like I’m Breathless. If we want to debate the quality of something, it seems we should be able to deepen our analysis a little more than this. Otherwise it’s just a matter of personal taste as already stated. It’s a fundamental issue in the lack of dynamism and detail within criticism of this album. I’m certainly not arguing that you can’t dislike it or find it a lesser work in her canon, but please make the effort to elaborate. Because it makes no sense to the other forum members if you don’t. In my view, I’m Breathless and Madame X have nothing in common other than perhaps if the listener simply categorizes all genres outside of mainstream pop as inferior. One was a loose soundtrack to a period action movie that had its pastiche roots in jazz and musical theater with the addition of an infamous global house anthem. The entire album showcases Madonna as an agile and disciplined vocalist The other is a broadly stroked global genre-hopping, deeply personal album on which the level of meticulous vocal production is both its genius and its greatest flaw.
  4. Nice! Here’s my X/Y Medellin/La Isla Bonita Dark Ballet/Paradise (Not for me) God Control/Future Lovers Future/Why’s It So Hard? Batuka/Nobody’s Perfect Killers who are partying/Mother and Father Crave/Love Tried To Welcome Me Crazy/Borderline Come Alive/Survival Extreme Occident/You’ll See Faz Gostoso/Into The Groove Bitch I’m Loca/Human Nature I don’t search I Find/Rescue Me Looking for Mercy/Ghosttown I Rise/Burning Up Funana/Love Makes The World Go Round Back that up to the beat/Super Pop Ciao Bella/Get Together
  5. Traditionally concept albums and cohesive theme-based albums have fared much better with critics. We are all subject to unconscious bias as a result of the way we were educated, and cultural and intellectual snobbery had always traditionally dictated the zeitgeist until relatively recently. I can’t say populist-driven tastes have made for a particularly impressive shift in quality and diversity, but fortunately the upside of the “democratization” of the music industry post-streaming has at least made variety accessible to those who seek it out. P.S. thanks @Voguerista! More a temporary sojourn than a comeback.
  6. It’s been a while since I last posted. With a lot going on personally and collectively, I was glad to have my unique rapport with Madame X the way I did with Madonna albums when I was a child and teenager. Opinions are what make this forum function. Without discussion, which includes differing opinions, there is no passion. Without passion there is no longer a measurable fan base. I sense there has been a surging reluctance to contribute by many members since the release of the Madame X album because anything short of syncophantry is often shot down. Personally, I feel it’s almost impossible in the modern era to not be affected by the defeatism of the measure of relevance of any musical release by its chart performance, validation by the media and streaming presence. While some are able to accept that Madonna is far from her commercial peaks of yore, and are therefore able to contextualize the quality of her work outside of its mass cultural validity, others cannot relate to music without it forming the Zeitgeist. I think it’s important to recognize this within the fan base because it is a real phenomenon that we have had to adapt to her dwindling mainstream appeal after a very long imperial phase. It’s been a bittersweet chapter in Madonna’s career in my opinion. Almost nobody is able to harness cross-generational interest in this era of the minute attention span, and she gave it a really good shot. When something isn’t embraced by the masses, it’s invalidating for the fan...particularly in Madonna’s case because she has been expected to prove herself at every turn for 36 years, and there’s almost a collective gleefulness in being able to dismiss her value due to being less commercially relevant. I find this album mostly cohesive (I define cohesive in this case as the vast majority of songs that make up the collective album forming a common flow of style, production techniques, and quality), but it has flaws too. This doesn’t prevent me from enjoying it, but I’ll admit my enthusiasm for it was tempered by the sometimes schizophrenic forum dialog (Eurovision was a nightmarish kickoff, and I’m not referring to her vocals) in the first month following its release, and so I personally stepped away. Musically, I find Madame X to be quietly triumphant. There are some beautiful melodies, and the warm subtlety of many of the songs is what gives an overall richness to the album experience. That said, paradoxically, and at the risk of enticing a mob mentality clapback, a considerable part of what I do not enjoy as much about Madame X is Madonna’s voice. There are certainly magnificent moments; Looking For Mercy, Crazy, Come Alive, Extreme Occident, and Killers are all glorious Madonna vocal classics for me. However, scattered throughout are moments when I find it to sound weak and limited, poorly produced, and more often diminished by bells and whistles that I don’t find to showcase her strengths. Again, I understand this is totally subjective, and also somewhat unfair considering that 99% of today’s pop is pitch corrected and heavily filtered. Unfortunately I do think some fans and casual listeners have interpreted the vocal manipulations as a reinforcement of the notion that Madonna’s voice itself has deteriorated substantially, and that it requires this type of distortion. This is just an opinion, and I respect anyone else’s if it is coming from a constructive place. I’m fully aware that Madonna has defended her artistic license to use her voice as a malleable instrument, and I am in total agreement with that, but that doesn’t negate the way something is received by the individual ear. I prefer when her voice sounds intimate and accessible, but preferences are just like opinions and assholes. We all have them.
  7. Yeah. Watching it again, it seems pretty clear she either remembers or was reminded of their last encounter, which, as he highlights himself, showed him being an asshole the first time around. She had every reason to give him the death stare, and that petulant little Dutch pride jab! He really was ineffective if his intention was to get her to address her vocal performance at Eurovision. I kept trying to see it as him being kind by skirting the matter and allowing room for her to offer her own response, but it was his final interview, and it was pretty spineless to then edit the piece to make her look evil and hypersensitive!
  8. You are right. A part of what made me uncomfortable throughout the interview is that they edited it to fit a preconceived notion of what Madonna is; imperial, imperious, and impenetrable. The problem with that is that while she is not always those things, she can often get testy in interviews when she isn’t in the mood, and she generally shuts down once she reaches that state of mind. This comes across as arrogant, and even petulant to many. Yes, it is the responsibility of the journalist to direct the interview in a way where that won’t happen if that is indeed the goal. However, this Dutch interviewer was clearly seeking a reaction. He didn’t get it as Madonna handles herself with the utmost professionalism, but as a fan it definitely feels like a missed opportunity. If it had been better approached as a question, we might have had a definitive response that would have put the Eurovision elephant outside the room once and for all. Oh well. Thank you to everyone who expresses differing opinions on these matters without just shutting people down for not agreeing. It really helps me as a fan to reassess the way I experience Madonna, and challenges me to gain. a broader perspective.
  9. Totally...there’s definitely something erratic about her demeanor in these interviews. I have noticed that she’s mostly been quite subdued and almost passive for Madonna in a good deal of them, but this one just made me uncomfortable. There are certain topics that just seem to trigger her, even though they are quite logical questions, and it isn’t like the journalists know what each other has already asked...He had an agenda, but he was smart enough to flatter her immensely with the talk of all she had done to facilitate his own personal freedoms, and the praise he offered regarding the album. Sometimes I feel she also has an inability to show indulgence for the fact that English is a secondary language for most of the interviewers I’ve seen her devour. I’d have thought that after so many years she’d get the subtleties of the raw spontaneous translations the questions she is asked sometimes represent, but she can be quite ferociously dismissive. I imagine it just depends on her patience levels, bolstered by possible hunger, or maybe she needs to pee and those corsets are just torture on her bladder!
  10. I’d imagine that as no one asked her about the Eurovision performance in any other interview, it probably was listed as topic non grata. He probably breached that agreement, which is why he was immediately shut down. She had ample time to address what he was masking in euphemism. She was clearly aware of it, and her response of staring him down and playing ignorant was as brilliantly defiant as it seemed steeped in foolish pride. That said, she seemed irritable from the beginning. I can’t imagine how dull it must be to do a press junket for two days, but in all honesty she really doesn’t have to approach her promo this way. She’s chosen to do it in hyper-concentration for over twenty years, and it always seems to try her patience to such a degree that she can come across as frankly rude and condescending.
  11. Agreed. And PJ Harvey did make a pop album. Two actually. One was called To Bring You My Love, and the other was Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea. I was also happy to hear from Madonna’s mouth that the finger snaps in I Don’t Search are actually sampled from Vogue.
  12. Loved her response to William Orbit’s name being mentioned! She shut that down fast.
  13. I think we were all shocked, in dismay and there was so much invested in the hype that the fallout felt deeply personal. I don’t even remember my perspective at the time anymore other than a feeling of being disappointed, but I agree with you that the performance hindered her promotional rollout enormously. It was a huge misstep. But I still love Future, and wanted so much for it to play universally. We are all fighting over the same thing at the end of the day. We wanted Madonna to be universally embraced and for this to be perceived as an official third-coming, but the new material isn’t getting heard because of all of the negative fallout. But I still have hope that she is being true to her artistic vision and that is fundamentally important to me as a fan, and I hope it translates via something she has yet to reveal via performance.
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