“Girls, they just wanna have some fun!” From the moment Madonna utters those words on MDNA, it’s clear that she’s trying really freaking hard to have a good time. With dance-music vets William Orbit, Martin Solveig, and Benny Benassi helming her return to the Euro-club stylings of 2005’s Confessions on a Dance Floor, Madge spends nearly half the album insisting that this is the Best Party Ever, from the pom-pom-shaking ”Give Me All Your Luvin”’ to the Mardi-Gras-beads-tossing ”Girl Gone Wild” and stereo-blasting ”Turn Up the Radio.” The album title even suggests that Ecstasy is part of Madge’s DNA.
But while there are a few genuine moments of double-rainbow bliss here (check the ”whoo-ooh!” chorus of ”I’m a Sinner”), there’s also real darkness lurking under the air-popped beats. If Madonna’s sending us a message, it’s this: I spent all year perfecting my cartwheel for the Super Bowl, and now I’m gonna have fun, even if it kills me.
Maybe it’s just that MDNA‘s so hell-bent on showing how much energy the 53-year-old puts into her job. Many songs recap her gold-star résumé referencing her past hits lyrically or musically. ”Girl Gone Wild” shares its sassy legwarmer-disco vibe with 2005’s ”Hung Up,” while ”I’m a Sinner” reunites her with Orbit for a very cool guitar-boosted rave-up that echoes 1998’s ”Ray of Light.”
But all those reminders of her work ethic can feel exhausting. On the ridiculous electro-rap ”I Don’t Give A,” she runs through her insane schedule as a celebrity supermom. Before finishing her power workout, hiring a babysitter, ”tweeting on the elevator,” and riding a helicopter to her divorce lawyers’ office, she has an epiphany: ”Wake up, ex-wife/This is your life.”
Are you listening, Guy Ritchie? Because Madonna’s not done yelling at you. After revealing that she ”didn’t have a prenup,” she gets a decent gold-digger joke into the ABBA-remix-esque strains of ”Love Spent”: ”Frankly, if my name was Benjamin,” she deadpans, ”we wouldn’t be in this mess we’re in.” Less charming is the industrial thumper ”Gang Bang,” where Madonna holds a gun to her lover’s head, demanding, ”Drive, bitch!” True, she also recorded a mea culpa — on ”I F—ed Up” she says ”I’m sorry” in French — but it’s telling that she cut it from the album. Her apology’s just as unconvincing as her Gallic accent.
So it’s surprising that Madonna is at her best on the love songs. The W.E. ballad ”Masterpiece” (which won her a Golden Globe in January) begins with Spanish guitar and a finger-snap rhythm — a refreshing break from the relentless bass throbbing. When she’s singing about a guy who’s as pretty as the Mona Lisa, her voice is lovely. And the synth stomper ”I’m Addicted,” a warm ode to a crush, offers a good excuse to join in when she says, ”I need to dance.” Elsewhere, Nicki Minaj even shows some L-U-V for Lady M, proclaiming, ”There’s only one queen, and that’s Madonna, bitch!” Judging by MDNA, she may be overestimating her idol. But there’s just enough dance-floor bonhomie here to get that catchphrase bedazzled on a few dozen leotards. B-
Spiritual electro? Sacrilicious! I’m a Sinner
A flamenco-style ballad Masterpiece
On February 8 2012, Madonna’s management issued a press release recapping her triumphant performance at the Super Bowl and looking ahead to the release of her new album, MDNA:
It’s been a record-breaking week for Madonna. Along with 117.8 million viewers – the largest viewership for a halftime show in Super Bowl history – and three million more viewers than the game itself, the pre-orders for the Material Girl’s upcoming MDNA album ascended to the top spot on iTunes stores in 50 countries and was the largest one day pre-order of any album in iTunes history, it was confirmed today by her record label Interscope. Commented Madonna, “Thanks for all the L-U-V!! from around the world.”
A key part of the album release included a first of its kind worldwide promotion by Clear Channel, a leading global media and entertainment company, which premiered Madonna’s highly anticipated new single and video, Give Me All Your Luvin’, across its full range of media platforms, including radio, outdoor, online and mobile on Friday, February 3. As part of the campaign, Clear Channel used extensive on-air and online promotions to drive listeners and Madonna fans to iTunes, where they could buy the new single and pre-order MDNA, scheduled to be released globally March 26.
Below are some of the astounding numbers that add up for Madonna this past week.
MADONNA BY THE NUMBERS:
- 50 Number 1’s – Pre-orders for Madonna’s MDNA album on iTunes (biggest one day pre-order in iTunes (biggest one-day pre-order in iTunes history) hit the top spot at iTunes store in 50 countries!
- 11,000,000 – YouTube downloads of new Madonna video… and counting. The most searched subject on YouTube and Google during the Super Bowl
- 13 – Madonna’s new single catapults to the #13 spot on Billboard’s Hot 100 Chart
- 56 – Give Me All Your Luvin’ marks Madonna’s 56th appearance on the Hot 100 according to Billboard’s Keith Caulfield
- 117.8 Million – Peak audience viewership during Madonna’s halftime performance – largest in Super Bowl history – up 4.7 million from last year – surpasses Michael Jackson’s 1993 halftime performance – and exceeds by 3 million the number of people viewing the 2012 Giants/Patriots game.
- 47.1 Million – Households saw Madonna’s Super Bowl Performance
- #6 – Trending at No. 6 on European Airplay Charts
- #2 – iTunes Single, jumped from previous spot 11 after the Super Bowl
- 2500 – Spins in less than 48 hours at Top 40 radio
- 25 – Give Me All Your Luvin’ single’s chart debut
- 51 – Global Tour Dates Announced by Live Nation
- 1600 – Clear Channel Digital Billboards Around the Globe aired Madonna’s Give Me All Your Luvin’
During a Twitter Q&A Madonna held on March 27, 2012, to promote her new album, deadmau5 tweeted her:
“You’re a role model to 100’s of millions. You have a powerful voice, EDM could use your positive influence, not ‘molly’ talk.”
Madonna responded by tweeting an old picture of herself wearing Mickey Mouse ears, captioned:
“From one mouse to another, I don’t support drug use and I never have. I was referring to the song called Have You Seen Molly written by my friend Cedric Gervais who I almost worked with on my album.”
“Fair enough, i was just voicing my concerns as i usually do. +1 respect for clearing it up personally.”
Watch Madonna rehearse “I’m Addicted” from the MDNA World Tour in Florence: