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MADAME X: official reviews are in: MADAME X is a hit with the critics!


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2 hours ago, alcermag said:

NME: Bold, bizarre, self-referential, and unlike anything Madonna has ever done before
Score: 4/5 stars

 

Madonna’s latest persona ‘Madame X’ borrows her name from the historical figure Virginie Amélie Avegno Gautreau: a socialite and occasional muse who scandalised genteel French society when she bared naked flesh – her entire shoulder, would you believe it – in a portrait. And while Madge’s own eye-patch wearing interpretation prefers taking a more enterprising approach to the current job market (Madame X is a mother, a child, a teacher, a nun, a singer, and a saint many among other things) it’s a fitting moniker for a record that restlessly explores all sides of contemporary pop at full divisive pelt: visiting Latin pop, all-out Eurotrash, gloomily percussive trap, NYC disco, house, and reggaeton.
 

During its most reckless moments, ‘Madame X’ is bold, bizarre, and unlike anything Madonna has ever done before. The frantic ‘Dark Ballet’ harnesses gloomily spun strings and robotic overlord vocals; it’s as villainous and foreboding as ‘Ray of Light’s darkest moments, or her ‘Die Another Day’ Bond theme. Then, quite out of nowhere, an extended piano interlude morphs into a mangled, glitching excerpt of ‘Dance of the Reed Pipes’ from Tchaikovsky’s ballet ‘The Nutcracker’ – it’s brilliant, overblown ridiculousness. “I want to tell you about love…. and loneliness,” Madonna husks dramatically.

Touching heavily on both these things, ‘Madame X’ explores the state of the world (spoiler: it’s not doing great) at large – as well as Madonna’s place within it – from her new base in Lisbon.  ‘Madame X’ isn’t flawless in its vision: at times, Madonna’s attempts to lead the future revolution can come off as ham-fisted. ‘Killers Who Are Partying’ features some absolute clanging missteps: booming lines like “I’ll be Islam if Islam is hated” and “I’ll be Native Indian if the Indian has been taken” seem like tone-deaf expressions of solidarity, especially from a wealthy white woman who seems to be planting herself at the centre of multiple minority narratives. And moments like ‘I Rise’s rehashed quote from the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre – “Freedom’s what you choose to do with what’s been done to you” – can border on inspirational fridge magnet territory, too broad to establish real connection.

‘Madame X’ is a far more interesting prospect when the focus moves back onto Madonna herself. ‘Crazy’ – produced by Jason Evigan and Kanye West collaborator Mike Dean – is a self-referential accordion bop: “I bend my knees for you like a prayer,” she sings, pointedly name-checking her 1989 album, and flipping from the original’s religious innuendo, towards doomed, dead-end infatuation  “oh god, look at me now”. Elsewhere, the rhythmic whisper of “cha cha cha” on opener and lead single ‘Medellín’ recalls ‘Hard Candy’s ‘Give It 2 Me’.

‘Bitch I’m Loca’, meanwhile, is the sort of swaggering anthem that campy Disney villain Ursula might belt out from the depths: Maluma (who also appears on lead single ‘Medellín’) the ideal sidekick. “Where do you want me to put this?” he drawls with a comedy wink. “You can put it inside” she replies. It’s like Madonna’s diva sketch at the end of ‘Act Of Contrition’ turned Carry On… Madame X. Her cover of ‘Faz Gostoso’ – originally by Brazilian pop star Blaya – is equally great fun. And the House-inflected standout ‘I Don’t Search I Find’  – bringing to mind Shep Pettibone’s production on ‘Vogue’, and repurposing a quote from Pablo Picasso for its title – is just as playful. “Finally, enough love,” Madonna announces.

Throughout her forty year career, outrage has always tailed Madonna closely; a point which is referenced on the likes of ‘Extreme Occident’ and the vulnerable admissions of ‘Looking For Mercy’ (“flawed by design, please sympathise,” she pleads) . “People have always been trying to silence me for one reason or another, whether it’s that I’m not pretty enough, I don’t sing well enough, I’m not talented enough, I’m not married enough, and now it’s that I’m not young enough,” Madonna recently expanded, speaking to Vogue,

In reality, if age wasn’t the chosen topic of the moment, the star would be “too much” of something – anything – else: too sexual, too attention-seeking, too weird, too controversial, too outspoken, too unwilling to disappear quietly into the good night. Instead, Madonna will do no such thing, happiest dancing said night away to the beat of her own creative drum.

 

For the first time since ‘Confessions on a Dance Floor’, perhaps, there’s a glint in Madonna’s eye; her visible, un-eyepatched one, at least.  Sonically restless, ‘Madame X’ doesn’t imitate current pop trends as much as it mangles them into new shapes. A record that grapples with being “just way too much”, ultimately, it refuses to tone things down.

https://www.nme.com/reviews/album/madonna-madame-x-review

 

NME giving her so much love this era. And judging by what we've gotten so far alone, understandably so. Loving it all

 

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1 hour ago, Kurt420 said:

That NME review is perfect!! Focuses just on the music. Clear the reviewer has no agenda going in. 

Between Eurovision and now this, it's clear to me everyone in German media has some sort of stick up their ass. Blech! Hasn't it warmed up there yet for summer?? Maybe some sun will do those people good. Miserable cunts.

 

Yes, indeed

German media as a whole has been pretentious and snobbish towards her for a decade at least. Without telling you why in a convincing manner. As it's often the case in general with Madonna when she gets criticised or downright lambasted for supposedly being "desperate"

I appreciate even an unfavorable review as long as you don't read between the lines that it's an actual personal issue against her with the writer

But constructive and REAL critiques are very welcome and sometimes helpful. You don't get any of that when you read some of those German articles from the past few years

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Just now, Shane said:

NME loves Crazy and is the first to say something nice about Looking For Mercy!

Crazy has been pretty well received aside from The Daily Mail I believe.

I'd say God Control, Batuka, and I Don't Search I Find are the most consistently liked overall. Haven't seen much negative out Come Alive either. And then Medellin and Crave from the already released songs have been pretty universally praised. 

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The high scoring reviews have me excited! Not necessarily for my own enjoyment (I try to not let a review skew that) but for the masses. It's positive reinforcement for her, her team and for perception to the outside. 

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15 minutes ago, Shaun said:

Still waiting on Billboard, Entertainment Weekly, New York Times, etc.

... Pitchfork 😁

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I've got to rant for a second-

Can't some of these motherfuckers write a review about, you know, the actual fucking music and not their personal feelings or agenda against Madonna? She isn't relevant? Who cares you fucking deranged POS. Review the music, thanks. We will decide if she is relevant, not some fucking lowlife who probably hates women because no one will fuck him. Incels have taken over the critics circles. Shove your tiresome, clique back handed compliments straight up your poorly wiped asses. 

I also don't need to hear what they think of her talents. There is an agenda there. They throw it in so casually so it seems as accepted fact. Her detractors do it all the time. It is tiresome. We don't need for you to conjecture about how you "think" the song is awesome due to Mirwais or whoever. I wonder what the music of the most successful woman of all time has in common? Oh yes, MADONNA! Funny how many of her collaborators can never duplicate the success they have with her. Oh, it must be all the men she surrounds herself with, right? Yeah, you're onto her secret you incel, melon fucking assholes. 

I don't need you to tell me how old she is. I can do math, thanks. While we are at it, how old are you? Whatever age, the way you act and write about Madonna would be embarrassing for anyone who is older than 10. It is hard to believe some of you are taken seriously when you cannot separate your personal feelings from your professional judgement. May your fingers find a chainsaw to run into. She's 60? FOR REAL? No way. Who would've known? 

I don't know where the hate and vitriol comes from. No other artists is treated this way that I know of. The disrespect is off the charts yet all you knuckle-dragging fucktards, at the end of the day, have to give a good review when you know the product is quality lest you stand out when everyone else comes out with a positive review and you're the outlier. So you begrudgingly give it up, though not without many qualifiers about how she has a few clunky lyrics (don't they all you fuckers? Do you point those out?) or she picks the right people. Lets but real, at the end of the day, you fuckers know it is Madonna who is the talent behind the product you just endorsed though you'll never say it out loud. Shhhh it'll out little secret. Now, fuck off into a beehive.

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On the whole I think the reviews have been super welcoming. And are adding to the the excitement and roll out of this era. I take my hat off to whoever in her team sorted out the security issues to provide a leak free era! 

There are some points in the NME review of RH that I agree with and felt at the time, like wishing she cane back with a full on house inspired LP produced by Diplo or Hercules and Love Affair.

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45 minutes ago, jamesshot said:

I've got to rant for a second-

Can't some of these motherfuckers write a review about, you know, the actual fucking music and not their personal feelings or agenda against Madonna? She isn't relevant? Who cares you fucking deranged POS. Review the music, thanks. We will decide if she is relevant, not some fucking lowlife who probably hates women because no one will fuck him. Incels have taken over the critics circles. Shove your tiresome, clique back handed compliments straight up your poorly wiped asses. 

I also don't need to hear what they think of her talents. There is an agenda there. They throw it in so casually so it seems as accepted fact. Her detractors do it all the time. It is tiresome. We don't need for you to conjecture about how you "think" the song is awesome due to Mirwais or whoever. I wonder what the music of the most successful woman of all time has in common? Oh yes, MADONNA! Funny how many of her collaborators can never duplicate the success they have with her. Oh, it must be all the men she surrounds herself with, right? Yeah, you're onto her secret you incel, melon fucking assholes. 

I don't need you to tell me how old she is. I can do math, thanks. While we are at it, how old are you? Whatever age, the way you act and write about Madonna would be embarrassing for anyone who is older than 10. It is hard to believe some of you are taken seriously when you cannot separate your personal feelings from your professional judgement. May your fingers find a chainsaw to run into. She's 60? FOR REAL? No way. Who would've known? 

I don't know where the hate and vitriol comes from. No other artists is treated this way that I know of. The disrespect is off the charts yet all you knuckle-dragging fucktards, at the end of the day, have to give a good review when you know the product is quality lest you stand out when everyone else comes out with a positive review and you're the outlier. So you begrudgingly give it up, though not without many qualifiers about how she has a few clunky lyrics (don't they all you fuckers? Do you point those out?) or she picks the right people. Lets but real, at the end of the day, you fuckers know it is Madonna who is the talent behind the product you just endorsed though you'll never say it out loud. Shhhh it'll out little secret. Now, fuck off into a beehive.

I KNOW!  And it is like 2/3 of the review in some cases, and only a brief mentence of the songs --the worst ones that they hated.

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1 hour ago, jamesshot said:

I've got to rant for a second-

Can't some of these motherfuckers write a review about, you know, the actual fucking music and not their personal feelings or agenda against Madonna? She isn't relevant? Who cares you fucking deranged POS. Review the music, thanks. We will decide if she is relevant, not some fucking lowlife who probably hates women because no one will fuck him. Incels have taken over the critics circles. Shove your tiresome, clique back handed compliments straight up your poorly wiped asses. 

I also don't need to hear what they think of her talents. There is an agenda there. They throw it in so casually so it seems as accepted fact. Her detractors do it all the time. It is tiresome. We don't need for you to conjecture about how you "think" the song is awesome due to Mirwais or whoever. I wonder what the music of the most successful woman of all time has in common? Oh yes, MADONNA! Funny how many of her collaborators can never duplicate the success they have with her. Oh, it must be all the men she surrounds herself with, right? Yeah, you're onto her secret you incel, melon fucking assholes. 

I don't need you to tell me how old she is. I can do math, thanks. While we are at it, how old are you? Whatever age, the way you act and write about Madonna would be embarrassing for anyone who is older than 10. It is hard to believe some of you are taken seriously when you cannot separate your personal feelings from your professional judgement. May your fingers find a chainsaw to run into. She's 60? FOR REAL? No way. Who would've known? 

I don't know where the hate and vitriol comes from. No other artists is treated this way that I know of. The disrespect is off the charts yet all you knuckle-dragging fucktards, at the end of the day, have to give a good review when you know the product is quality lest you stand out when everyone else comes out with a positive review and you're the outlier. So you begrudgingly give it up, though not without many qualifiers about how she has a few clunky lyrics (don't they all you fuckers? Do you point those out?) or she picks the right people. Lets but real, at the end of the day, you fuckers know it is Madonna who is the talent behind the product you just endorsed though you'll never say it out loud. Shhhh it'll out little secret. Now, fuck off into a beehive.

 

Bingo!!

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3 hours ago, jamesshot said:

I've got to rant for a second-

Can't some of these motherfuckers write a review about, you know, the actual fucking music and not their personal feelings or agenda against Madonna? She isn't relevant? Who cares you fucking deranged POS. Review the music, thanks. We will decide if she is relevant, not some fucking lowlife who probably hates women because no one will fuck him. Incels have taken over the critics circles. Shove your tiresome, clique back handed compliments straight up your poorly wiped asses. 

I also don't need to hear what they think of her talents. There is an agenda there. They throw it in so casually so it seems as accepted fact. Her detractors do it all the time. It is tiresome. We don't need for you to conjecture about how you "think" the song is awesome due to Mirwais or whoever. I wonder what the music of the most successful woman of all time has in common? Oh yes, MADONNA! Funny how many of her collaborators can never duplicate the success they have with her. Oh, it must be all the men she surrounds herself with, right? Yeah, you're onto her secret you incel, melon fucking assholes. 

I don't need you to tell me how old she is. I can do math, thanks. While we are at it, how old are you? Whatever age, the way you act and write about Madonna would be embarrassing for anyone who is older than 10. It is hard to believe some of you are taken seriously when you cannot separate your personal feelings from your professional judgement. May your fingers find a chainsaw to run into. She's 60? FOR REAL? No way. Who would've known? 

I don't know where the hate and vitriol comes from. No other artists is treated this way that I know of. The disrespect is off the charts yet all you knuckle-dragging fucktards, at the end of the day, have to give a good review when you know the product is quality lest you stand out when everyone else comes out with a positive review and you're the outlier. So you begrudgingly give it up, though not without many qualifiers about how she has a few clunky lyrics (don't they all you fuckers? Do you point those out?) or she picks the right people. Lets but real, at the end of the day, you fuckers know it is Madonna who is the talent behind the product you just endorsed though you'll never say it out loud. Shhhh it'll out little secret. Now, fuck off into a beehive.

AMAZING post!  Thank you!

”With minimal talent but a whole lot of ambition and a knack for surrounding herself with the right people.”  Fuck off.

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