Album Review

Hard Candy - Madonna

Hard Candy is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna get. It ranges from mildly amusing to plain stupid and leaves you scratching your head. Madonna is famous for seeing potential in little known producers who are shot to super stardom after making a record with her. On a few occasions she has shacked up with anyone well known. This is one of those rare occasions. After Pharell brought the world "Hella Good", "I'm A Slave 4 U", and "Hollaback Girl" and Timbaland gave us "Get Ur Freak On", "Promiscuous", and "The Way I Are", a team-up with Madonna seems like it would give birth to year's best pop song's, which it won't.

Opening track, "Candy Shop" is actually worse than the 50 Cent song of the same name. Madonna, please don't tell me that your sugar is raw, sticky and sweet, I don't want to know what it means. And couldn't she have found another candy to use in place of Turkish Delights? Lead single "4 Minutes" begins with Timbaland exclaiming that he's out of time and he only has four minutes. Madonna wants you to believe that its about saving the world and ourselves from selfishness and poverty and hate but it sounds more like Timbaland admitting he only has four minutes until his trademark sound becomes outdated. "Give It 2 Me", reported to be the next single, is Madonna's statement about career longevity and record breaking, and it does a good job until she tells us to "get stupid". That's exactly what it is. Her other breakdown,chanting "see my bootie get down" in "Heartbeat" works much better.

"Miles Away" is one of the better tracks, a mild dance song about long distance relationships that work best long distance. "She's Not Me" seems like a dig at Miss Spears or perhaps the other MC, Mariah Carey. "She's not me, she doesn't have my name...she's been reading my books and stealing my looks and lingerie". The Kanye West duet is unispiring and it takes a lifetime to get to his part anyways. "Spanish Lesson" is terrible, just skip it. "Devil Wouldn't Recognize You" is a bright spot, but it is a rehash of co-writer Justin Timberlake's "Don't Cry Me A River" complete with rain sounds.

"4 Minutes" has been a big hit, peaking at #3 in the US and 3 weeks and running at #1 in UK, but I can't help but think Madonna is a little miffed that she missed the top spot in her home country. She has stalled at 12 #1's here since 2000 while Mariah sailed passed Elvis. Making an album with Timbaland, the only producer who has been able to make pop singles that have reached pole position since the bursting of the teen pop bubble, seemed like a sure-fire way to rack up a lucky 13th #1 but now it doesn't seem like that will happen. Sure Hard Candy is a dissapointment, but after signing with Live Nation, M-dolla has ten more years to make up for it... and get another #1 hit.


Post a Comment