Girl Gone Wild

The MDNA roll-out continues, and thank goodness because “Give Me All Your Luvin'” sank like a stone on the charts after all the Super Bowl publicity died out.  Yesterday saw the release of a lyric video for the next single from the album “Girl Gone Wild.”  Originally titled “Girls Gone Wild” the title was changed almost undoubtedly because of the threatened lawsuit from Girls Gone Wild creator Joe Francis.  Whether there’s just one girl going wild or multiple girls going wild, there’s no doubt that the release of the full song was eagerly anticipated among Madonna fans, especially when reports of “Give Me All Your Luvin'” being the weakest track on the album started leaking out onto the internet.  Note to Madonna: you don’t release the weakest track from the album as the kick-off single no matter how tidily it might tie into other projects (i.e. the Super Bowl.)

Naturally, I was very eager to hear the song as well, but since 3G at work is spotty at best (WHY?), I wasn’t able to listen until last night.  By then, I’d already read a lot of the commentary on the song via Twitter and comments on Facebook.  Predictably, the fans were split right down the middle on it, leading Billboard columnist and Madonna guru Keith Caulfield to tweet: Madonna can please NO ONE at this point in her career. Not her bitchy “core” fans. Not critics. Hope she’s doing what she wants & is happy!  Keith is partially right in that everything Madonna does is examined by her fans with an electron microscope and when it’s not “Like A Prayer” or “Ray of Light” it’s dismissed as utter shit, but people ARE entitled to think what they want about it.  Listen and judge for yourself.

Naturally, I have an opinion on this – isn’t that what the internet is all about anyway?  Overall, I love the Confessions-style vibe of the song.  It lacks Stuart Price’s masterful production that made Confessions so great, but I think it’s certainly a good Madonna song.  I like the verses more than the chorus but that is mostly because I feel like the songwriting on the chorus is kind of lame.  It also has a pretty good bridge.  So many Madonna songs on Hard Candy lacked bridges and really, Madonna’s best songs all had great bridges.  I don’t know that it’ll be one of her more memorable hits (or even a top ten hit at all) but that’s okay.  At this point in her career, I think Madonna just needs to do what makes her happy and stop chasing chart success.  Radio is just not going to play her any longer.  She is NOT a current act.  Radio in the 80s did not play many, if any, artists that were popular when my parents were teenagers.  Likewise, I don’t see why we should expect any different now that my own child is only a few years away from being a teenager.

I maintain that if Kylie Minogue had recorded this song and released a lyric video for it, all the fans in the Twitterverse would be collectively creaming their shorts over how good it is.  I mean no disrespect to Ms. Minogue, but I think it’s all an expectations game now with Madonna.  Fans just keep expecting her to be brilliant, as if somehow, she is more than human.  It’s an unfair but inevitable double standard that we don’t hold other divas as accountable as Madonna, partially because we KNOW Madonna can be amazing. The bottom line is that Madonna doesn’t owe us anything.  She doesn’t have to serve up what we want.  I basically want Confessions, Part 2, but if this is what is making Madonna happy, go for it.  Ultimately, it’s her life and her career.

I, for one, like the song and can see myself playing it quite a bit.  I wonder how it will fit in the context of the album.  The version with the spoken intro that evokes “Act of Contrition” is better than the version in they lyric video – somehow that little addition makes all the difference.  I also love the single cover.  I know that some people are begging her to put her clothes back on, but THIS IS WHO SHE IS.  Jesus H, if you are a straight male and can’t say she looks good, regardless of her age, you’re frickin’ blind.  Granted, the photo has been retouched within an inch of its life, but what photo these days hasn’t been?

I know I sound like a Madonna apologist.  I still am excited for the album release and even if I had hated both of the songs so far I wouldn’t regret my ticket purchase to her show.  She never does a tour half-assed and it will be good and more than worth the cash.

And hey, it’s still better than “4 Minutes.”

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One Response to Girl Gone Wild

  1. The Gay Wife says:

    Great review of the single Dan! I really like the song personally – it’s very current and catchy as hell. I also like the Act of Contrition vocals in the beginning – just its very inclusion ties everything up neatly with her pre-electronic and later part of her career (i.e. Act Of Contrition as mentioned and Sorry from Confessions). I think this album is going to be very mixed in terms of styles the producers have brought to the table – Benassi/Solveig/Orbit – so I don’t think any leading song is going to be fully indicative of the whole album. I mean, GMAYL/Girls/Masterpiece are produced by one of the above producers and all three have been completely different. This makes me excited because I just don’t know what to expect of the album. But I can safely predict that MDNA will be 10 x better than Hard Candy and that’s enough for me. Fact is, she no longer has anything to prove!

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