Madonna returned in late 2000 with this superb effort, following on from the critically-acclaimed and grammy award winning success of what is still possibly her greatest album yet, Ray Of Light (1998).
The album would be titled Music and would again offer the sound of the future and continued in a vaguely similar format to Ray Of Light. Madonna worked with a multiple number of producers on this project which included William Orbit (who also co-produced Ray Of Light), Mirwais Ahmadzai, Guy Sioworth and Mark "Spike" Stent. Music, offered another set of a diverse range of tracks that were both adventurous and compelling which has always been the genius of Madonna as she still never ceases to amaze and surprise. Madonna has always had that uncanny ability to be experimental and creative and still always come out on top.
The title track, Music is a monster dance-floor filler. Containing a swirling electronic pop-funk vibe, Madonnas playful delivery gives startling ignition to this slick offering that caught onto the public like a magnet. Unsurprisingly and very deservedly, Music became a cross-Atlantic chart-topper.
Impressive Instant is another startling and mesmerising tune with its strikingly synthesised effects and driving grooves. Would have made a perfect choice for release as a single as this would undoubtedly have been another monster hit.
Runaway Lover, is a mid-tempo dance number that contains another series of bizarre, synchronised sounds thats still vastly origanal and highly inventive with its unique musical arrangements. Actually Runaway Lover does admitedly sound like a left-over track from Ray Of Light, but still is utterly impressive.
I Deserve It has a remarkable combination of electronic-dance, with its again, synthesised effect, blended neatly into an arrangement that has a country twinge to it. A moody, acoustic guirtar ballad, the song is blatantly a touching dedication to her husband, Guy Ritchie, an immensley talented film director, whose credits include the two cult classics, Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrells (1998) and Snatch (2001) You get to more fully apprerciate Madonnas striking vocal abilities here, and she puts in a powerful and passionate performance as always the case with Madonna.
Amazing is a highly stylized, guirtar-powered and uptempo William Orbit collaboration who works his magic yet again with Madonna as he had done so consistently on the Ray Of Light album.
Nobodys Perfect is one of the more commercial-orientated singles though those synchronised and echoey sound effects are still clocking away amidst the musical arrangements and Madonna delivers a subtle, exuberant vocal performance, neatly surfboarding along the complex arrangements.
Don't Tell Me, returns again to the neatly gelled mixture of Dance/Country and delivers it with seemingly a vengeance. Madonna has always been sassy and street-smart and its nice to see she hasn't lost any of her magical touch over the years and if anything she just gets better and better!
What It Feels Like For A Girl, is a more sultry, grooving number that is effectively mellow in its content and is a nice way of beginning to wind the album down. Certainly has many musical merits and this also was lifted as a single where it became another rapid Top 10 seller, though its mix is different to the version on here.
More atmospheric was the stormy, moody, Paradise (Not For Me) where Madonnas slightly chilly delivery sends shivers down the spine through its trance-like arrangements. One of the more adventurous and inventive recordings on here!
Finally this rollercoaster ride of an album begins slowing down with two impeccably delivered Dance-Country numbers, Gone and her fabulous renedition of American Pie which rounds the album off on a high note.
Expectations were high after the classic Ray Of Light set which was one of the most significant albums of the 1990's and certainly one of the biggest of Madonnas career to date. The album generally received critical praise but was often unfairly compared constantly to Ray Of Light (which often came out better) but you should really judge this album on its own merits as there are enough individual qualities of its own and is consistently excellent, bubbling in a remarkable multitude of styles.