Madonna’s New Album…Through A Door
Here’s the not exactly exstatic – but certainly worth reporting – MTV.com‘s first contact with Madonna’s Hard Candy:
Note to Madonna’s A&R/Marketing folks: if you want to get a real opinion on Madge’s new music, don’t ask the MTV News execs graciously nodding their heads in your closed-door, super-secretive listening session. Ask us young, hardcore music geeks who are all gathered outside the big exec’s two-inch thick door, eavesdropping. Then you won’t have the cool kids, tastemakers and early adopters giving your baby less than its full due in blogs like this because it sounded all muffled.
Not that label reps of A-listers like Madonna really care about MTV’s opinion, per se… it’s sort of like big liquor distributors dropping off Hennessey at your local bar (oops did I just give my race away?). They aren’t asking if it will sell, they’re telling you where to position it for optimal lighting. And not that we can really give TOO much of an opinion anyway, because of the larger corporate issues still inherent in the “MTV” part of “MTV News.” Unless of course we’re talking about the Hottest MC’s in hip-hop…and thank goodness Madonna’s not attempting to rap these days because then I would truly be licensed to spank her still-amazingly well toned behind. Which she would probably like…but I digress. Or do I?
I am pleased to report that, as best as I could tell through a relatively thick door, Madonna still sounds like she enjoys an occasional spanking, working some attitude over hard bangers from Timbaland and Skateboard P. Again, it was hard for my co-workers and I to really get a feel for the music, not only because we were eavesdropping through a damn door but because every time a track would stop and we could really discuss it, someone in the office would move and we’d all scramble back to our work stations like roaches when the kitchen light comes on (more a memory from my formative years than a current reference…thank you, Tila Tequila!).
I will say that, overall, the comments we did share were mixed: one person pointed out that the Timbo track was a bit dated by his standards and would’ve been great for Nelly Furtado two years ago. Not mention that it sounded a bit more like Justin featuring Madonna, not vice versa. A hook from another song sounded dangerously close to something recent from Britney, and someone else called out a dead-on Gwen Stefani reference in a third, acoustic guitar-driven number. Now this could all be good based on the way the copycat music industry works these days but, this being Madonna, I’m not so sure. But just like when you’re listening through your parents door and it sounds like they might be fighting, don’t take all of this too much to heart…they could just be sharing a bottle of Merlot and playing rough.
Plus, on a larger level who cares about what was actually said about Madonna’s new music; the most important thing to note from this rude bit of office non-etiquette was the scene: you had the musical theater/American Idol kids, the emo hipster kids, the hip-hop kids, the Choose or Lose political kids, black and white, men and women, all huddled around shirking their actual job duties to share a common cultural moment (remember those?). And therein lies the real power of Obama Madonna.