Shop now Shop now Shop now Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Shop now Shop now
Profile for josh_debbarman@hotmail.com > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by josh_debbarman...
Top Reviewer Ranking: 9,024,885
Helpful Votes: 21

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
josh_debbarman@hotmail.com (London, England)

Show:  
Page: 1
pixel
Give It to Me
Give It to Me
Offered by all my music
Price: £39.90

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This is not Madonna, it's Otto Von Wernherr throughout, 28 July 2000
This review is from: Give It to Me (Audio CD)
Not one of Madonna's famous albums, Give It To Me's collaborator is Otto Von Wernherr, who also worked on the 'In the Beginning' album (not to be confused with the 'In The Beginning' album which used to be called Pre-Madonna). The album features repeatitive lines spoken or sung by Madonna (sometimes lifted straight from other songs from the In The Beginning album) set to more dancey music. Give It To Me is a strange though funky enough track. In it, Madonna sings, 'I'll give you', then Von Wernherr says something desirable (power, fame, money, sex, caviar, cognac, champagne, etc) and then Madonna sings 'you better !' and then this is repeated with some other desirable. This is one song where Von Wernherr's deep melodramatic voice compliments Madonna's early voice. Perhaps it is the early electronica music that does it - something makes this song work where most of the Von Wernherr songs didn't. A decent start to the album. Shake is so similar, it's hard to tell them apart, apart from an upwards change in tempo. Madonna sings 'You better' then the backer sings 'shake !', set to a dance theme. Some of the effects include a samba whistle and a 'ooh-ooh' lifted from Cosmic Climb (In the Beginning album). Not a bad song, but a little too similar to the previous tracks. Get Down again uses almost same dance music in the background, but this time Madonna sings 'Come!' then the backer sings 'get down !'. There are again lifted vocals portions from Cosmic Climb, resulting in a disjointed song which would probably work if it hadn't been done before in the album. Time To Dance starts off very suddenly without any real intro, and sounds similar to the previous songs, but it has a more rock feel due to the guitars used. Instead of lifting from Cosmic Climb, Von Wernherr lifts from We Are The Gods (In the Beginning album) and the result is better, if a little dijointed again. The music has a nice warmth that sets it apart from the clones just preceding it. Wild Dancing is an energetic song, which is mostly sung by Madonna to the background of a drummer, with occasional twirls from an electric keyboard (shock, horror !). It's alright, but hardly makes for 'wild' dancing. Let's Go Dancing is again a similar song to the others, more reliant on the drumbeat. Von Wernherr says 'Let's go' and Madonna adds 'dancing, dancing'. Very repetitive and boring. Cosmic is basically the same as Cosmic Climb from the In the Beginning album. Otto Von Wernherr has a larger spoken part in this song, but he is less annoying, as his dreary voice suits the mood of the song. Madonna is capable as ever, asking if you've got time to make this cosmic climb. Seems like she did and Otto didn't, in the end, doesn't it ? One of the more listenable songs on the album, and you might recognise this song as being the source of many of the effects in the other songs. On The Street again has a more rock accompaniment, mixed with the basic dance theme and Madonna's voice jarringly repeated over again. This album had potential as an alternative angle on Madonna's music. But Von Wernherr, though showing some nice touches with the music, fails to gain any breadth and ends up repeating the same themes over and over again. On their own, each of the songs isn't so very bad. But listened to as a whole, you get the impression that Von Wernherr wrote one song and basically cloned it, getting eight songs for the same price. Pity the album doesn't cost as little as one of those songs. If I had to chose four original songs from the album, they would be Give It To Me, Time To Dance, Wild Dancing and Cosmic. Listen to them and ignore the rest and you shouldn't feel too cheated - but the 'let's dance' theme does wear thin after a while.


I'm Breathless
I'm Breathless
Offered by Bridge_Records
Price: £4.03

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Timeless classic underlines her versatility, 28 July 2000
This review is from: I'm Breathless (Audio CD)
From the film 'Dick Tracey', this album is very retro, as the film is set in the 1930s. Madonna plays the temptress and villian/heroine (if you've seen the film, you'll know what I mean) Breathless Mahoney, hence the name of the album. Enter Madonna the cabaret singer... He's A Man is a Broadway-style song sung by Mahoney about Dick Tracey. It provides a nice introduction to the film and Madonna will impress many with her easy adaptation to the different style of singing. A powerful performance. Sooner Or Later is a slower, more seductive number, more reminiscent of a classic cabaret song. Those people who say that Madonna's voice is high-pitched and like that of Aqua's lead singer will be surprised at certain parts of this song. Hanky Panky is a naughty, bouncy song about lovin'-an'-a-spankin'. Madonna's voice oozes personality and authority as she instructs "spank me". A great number. I'm Going Bananas is a comic song with a strong latin influence. The voice used is completely different yet again (like that of the famous Brazillian singer, Carmen Miranda), emphasising Madonna's versatility. Cry Baby is another comedy song, where Madonna puts on a New York accent (another change !) and tells how her guy is such a cry baby. It's such a good impression, you almost forget it's Madonna singing. Who said Madonna can't act ? Something To Remember is a more serious affair, where Madonna's is voice full of regret and loss - the lyrics are quite evocative and emotional: "I was not your woman, I was not your friend, but you gave me something to remember," and "we were not meant to be, at least not in this lifetime". A tear-jerking classic. Back In Business shows the bad side of Mahoney's character, and how ! In a cruel, mocking, ice-queen voice, she tells how being bad is best. There is a huge difference in rhythm between the verses and the chorus and the bridges, but it all work together somehow with the jazzy music. Incredibly cool. More is a Material Girl à la Broadway. It's another great number, packed full of materialistic desires. "More is better than nothing - yes !" she yells, "gotta fill your cupboard, remember Mother Hubbard" she warns and "each possession you possess, helps your spirits to soar", she enthuses, and you can't help loving it. There is a fine piece of drama at the end to round off a superb song. Coming down from the dizzy heights of materialism, What Can You Lose is a beautiful, sad, little duet, to the accompaniment of a piano, between Madonna and Mandy Patinkin, the pianist from the film. Patinkin's quavery tone perfectly compliments Madonna's clear voice. It leaves you feeling regretful that it is only two minutes long. Now I'm Following You will quickly dispel any gloom though. Another duet, this time between Madonna and Warren Beatty, who did remarkably well. Part I sounds as if it comes from a classic musical, whilst Part II is a more modern dance version which follows on from Part I and which cleverly contains sections inserted from previous songs in the album. Vogue is, by any standards, quite astonishing. It starts off low-key, with a lengthy intro punctuated only occasionally by Madonna's spoken words. But then it metamorphasises into one of the greatest dance tunes ever. This song encourages everyone to get up and dance, because "you're a superstar, yes, that's what you are !", this song is beloved by the gay community, who took it to mean that coming out is not something to be avoided but embraced. The song also demands racial and gender equality. It includes a tribute to many stars of yesteryear who had 'Vogue'. A great, great song. A perfect, modern ending for a classic album. This is a glorious collection of classic musical music. Madonna not only puts on a good performance in the film (recommended, by the way), but also adapts her voice well to this very different type of music. Not only that, but there are different voices used in the different songs of the album. I challenge, nay, defy anyone to name any other modern pop star who could metamorphasise so gracefully into a '30s singer. Fans of Madonna's modern music may not give this one full credit, but because it is vastly dated already, it will never age.


True Blue
True Blue
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.93

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Changing times..., 28 July 2000
This review is from: True Blue (Audio CD)
Madonna carried on with her glamour theme to some extent with this album, but she went for a simple 'common' look for Papa Don't Preach. She also showed her interest in the latin sound for the first time here, something that would recur later. Generally, this was a period of growth and diversification. Gaining confidence, Madonna was not afraid to experiment, and that laid the foundations for her more recent habit of picking underground themes and using them extensively in the mainstream.Papa Don't Preach is a real corker of a song. It is more than a bit 'rock' as well as pop. Madonna tells her father that she is seeing the boy he warned her about and that she is pregnant - and asks him to accept her boyfriend, whom she won't give up. A common enough story, this shows how in touch Madonna is with the public. A real kick-ass song, bits of the music appear all over the place, e.g. the Vauxhall adverts on TV in 1998-2000 (if you're in the UK). Open Your Heart is another stonking song. In it, Madonna plays the part of an erotic dancer. A very controversial video because of this ! She won't take no for an answer ("don't try to run, I can keep up with you"), and the song is filled with innuendo ("I hold the lock and you hold the key...I'll give you love if you, you turn the key"). This song has a great rhythm and Madonna really pulls out the stops. White Heat is a tribute to the actor Jimmy Cagney, and features his voice with the immortal words "you dirty, rotten...", usually followed by a spate of machinegun fire. Actually, it has very little to do with Cagney, just a theme of Madonna 'holding up' the object of her affections and demanding love in return. Live To Tell is a real tear-jerking ballad. Madonna describes how her man proved unworthy of her love ("a man can tell a thousand lies, I've learned my lesson well. Hope I live to tell the secret I have learned, 'til then it will burn inside of me"). This has some really beautiful lyrics and another example is "if I run away, I'd never have the strength to go very far. How would they hear the beating of my heart ?". Well worth a listen, and especially since it is one of Madonna's earliest ballads. Where's The Party is a song with a theme of staying young, despite working for a living, by partying. Nice, but routine, until the last part, where Madonna trots out with, "we can make it all right, we can make you dance, we can make a party last all night" at high speed and repeated, which adds a really nice touch to the song, and a twist of humour is added with the final bursting into tears. The title track True Blue is actually in my opinion the weakest track on the album. It is too sugary, too I-love-you, for my taste: e.g. the chorus - "true love, you're the one I'm, dreamin' of, your heart fits me, like a glove, and I'm gonna be, true blue, baby, I love you" - ugh ! But maybe that's a boy thing and you soppy girls will like it ! Madonna gets right back on track with La Isla Bonita. Madonna's love affair with all things Spanish is clearly evident - many years before Ricky Martin and Jennifer Lopez and the new Latino sound. A real beauty. A health warning, though: not one to listen to after your boss has told you that you can't have any leave, scuppering your vacation plans to the Seychelles, or wherever. It'll make you feel sick. Trust me, I've been there ! It's OK, but not first-class stuff. It's about how she has a crush on a young tearaway, who leaves the small ol' town for Vegas, and how she wished she'd told him she loved him, but that it's too late now. Love Makes The World Go Round is a song written for the Live Aid concert, where Madonna put on a performance of stunning, almost epic standards. The song itself is about pain, poverty and war and how we should fight them - pretty standard charity stuff - but the live performance was something out of this world. The bouncy tune and carnival feel prevent the song from being depressing and some of the lyrics are catchy, like: "make love, not war, we say" (hear, hear !) and some are spot-on as well: "don't judge a man 'til you've been standing in his shoes, you know that we're all so quick to look away, 'cos it's the easy thing to do". We see in this song, as in Papa Don't Preach, Madonna the campaigner, for the first time. Bravo, Madonna. Not a bad effort overall - I think the title track was ill-advised, and this may have led to the under-rating of this album by critics and fans alike, but there are four awesome songs here.


Something To Remember
Something To Remember
Offered by A ENTERTAINMENT
Price: £3.14

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The title says it all, 28 July 2000
This review is from: Something To Remember (Audio CD)
I Want You (with MASSIVE ATTACK) is a powerful, seductive song. "I want you to want me, I want you, but I want you to want me too" Madonna croons, silkily. Resist that if you can. MASSIVE ATTACK add a powerful backing music to it that adds weight to the song. I'll Remember is from the film 'With Honors'. Madonna sings of how she's been helped by the love of someone who is no longer with her, but for whom she feels great gratitude - "and I'll remember the love that you gave me, now that I'm standing on my own". A lovely ballad. But the real jewel in the crown of ballads is You'll See, which was written at around about the same time that Madonna was being seriously harassed by a stalker. Maybe this song is a get-back at him, who knows, but it is simply the most beautiful of ballads. In the song, Madonna's lover treats her badly, leaves her and thinks he's destroyed her. Though obviously hurting badly, Madonna insists "I will survive, I will stay alive" and warns him "you think that you are strong, but you are weak. It takes more strength to cry, admit defeat. I have truth on my side, you only have deceit". What wonderful lyrics - and Madonna puts in a performance to match. Let no-one say that Madonna's voice lacks emotion - refer them to this song. Crazy For You is a more country-style of song, to my knowledge the only time Madonna has ventured into this territory. True country fans may see this as mediocre, but it is an interesting diversion for Madonna and one that underlines her versatility and willingness to experiment. From the baseball film, 'In A League Of Their Own', This Used To Be My Playground has to be a contender for the saddest Madonna song. She sings regretfully of how her past life is dead and gone. Live To Tell is a real tear-jerking ballad. Madonna describes how her man proved unworthy of her love ("a man can tell a thousand lies, I've learned my lesson well. Hope I live to tell the secret I have learned, 'til then it will burn inside of me"). This has some really beautiful lyrics and another example is "if I run away, I'd never have the strength to go very far. How would they hear the beating of my heart ?". Well worth a listen, and especially since it is one of Madonna's earliest ballads. Love Don't Live Here Anymore was not commercially successful, but I can't for the live of me think why. Sung previously by Rose Hill and Kenny Rogers, Madonna's version is far more powerful and emotional, giving insights to the talent that Madonna would show later on. The song deals with abandonment. Just listen to Madonna's voice and tell me this is not a great song. Take a Bow is a classic Madonna song - an extremely successful song that Americans in particular liked, though Europeans were less keen. A slow and rhytmic recitation, Maddy 'commends' her lover on his acting ability, and says that he ought to get an award. This doesn't refer to any acting aspirations, but to his relationship with her. He broke her heart and it's time to end it all...very sentimental. I think it fits better in this album rather than in the Bedtime Stories album, where it is also placed. Forbidden Love is another sexy and sensual song about a crush Maddy has on a man who is off-limits - hence 'forbidden love' - and she knows it's not right, but she doesn't care. I think it was a huge mistake not to release this song as a single - vastly under-rated. One More Chance is possibly a little too regretful, grovelling and self-deprecating for it's own good, and in a sense this song is the nearest the album gets to having a weak link. "give me one more chance, tell me that it's not too late", Madonna begs you. Madonna begging me ? Oh well, all is forgiven ! Rain is a real beauty, the another gem of this album. Romantic rather than sexual, it shows Madonna's vocal range well and is one of Madonna's best songs, in my opinion. Madonna's relationship with her father was difficult and complex, and Oh Father goes some way to explain this, explaining how much better she feels now she is no longer under her father's control and anger. A classically beautiful stanza from the song "Oh Father, if you never wanted to live that way, if you never wanted to hurt me, why am I running away ?". A strangely nostalgic feel counterbalances the criticism of her father, and shows what a complex relationship this is, and this is emphasised by a conciliatory note near the end: "Maybe some day, when I look back I'll be able to say, 'You didn't mean to be cruel - somebody hurt you too.'" I Want You (orchestral) has a more dramatic feel about it, more refined than the sheer power of MASSIVE ATTACK's backing. A worthy beginning and end to this fabulous album. This is one incredible album. Madonna always does well with ballads, but collected together under one roof, so to speak, the effect is mind-blowing. It is difficult to say how this could have been made any better.


Ray Of Light (U.S. Version)
Ray Of Light (U.S. Version)
Offered by A ENTERTAINMENT
Price: £2.87

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easily her best original album to date, 28 July 2000
Drowned World/Substitute For Love is a hybrid of two component songs, and you can tell the difference between the two halves. But they have been welded together so seamlessly that it just seems like different phases of the same song. Madonna tells of the pressures of fame and fortune, and in a video that was criticised as being too much like the plight of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, she flees from pursuing paparazzi, only to have her picture taken by hotel maids. Sporting a simple look in the video, Madonna creates a dreamy atmosphere and this is a worthy start to the album. In Swim, Madonna tells of the evils of the world and comfort the listener. It is a very soothing song, and the water theme is evident in the music and the flow of words. Ray Of Light has a very different beat. Energetic, dynamic, and even operatic at times, the title track has been hailed as the best song by Madonna, by a lot of people. The video is unmissable for its speeded up effects, mirroring everyday life. What most people don't know is that this is a cover of a song by Curtis & Muldoon in the 1970's. It however, was nowhere near as successful as this song, which benefits from 'orbitalisation' and Madonna's mastery of voice. Candy Perfume Girl has a feel of rock and is almost neo-punk in style. The lyrics are very wierd indeed, but the overall effect is actually rather good. Skin has a very trancey feel at times, and though not instantly likeable in the way Ray Of Light is, it grows on you, and it grows during the song as well, in a manner that reinforces the dreamy quality. Slowly building up, wave after wave, it has a more spicey and eastern feel to it than the previous songs. Nothing Really Matters is a lively song telling how love overcame selfishness. The video is memorable for the red dress Madonna wears and for the 'Geisha' look she sported. She even performed it at the Grammys. Sky Fits Heaven is a glorious song, and one that, in my opinion, should have been released as a single. It is very uplifting and perfect for playing in the car on a hot day on the highway ("travelling down, this road, watching the signs as I go, I think I'll follow, the sun..."). Shanti/Ashtangi is quite unlike any other song Madonna has ever sung. Heavily influenced by India, there is not a single word of English as it is sung entirely in the ancient language of Sanskrit. The words are genuine mantras, and send a shiver down the spine with their authenticity, helped by capable pronounciation by Madonna. There is, however, a bit of humour there - for instance, some of the music in the middle sounds just out of Bollywood rather than out of Vedic Hindu scripture. I find a phrase from the song helps when you're nervous, e.g. before an exam. 'Om shanti' is a combination of the sacred hindu meditative syllable 'om' and 'shanti', which means 'peace'. Frozen was the first single released from this album and is frankly, quite astonishing. Also influenced by India (evident from the mehindi figure of 'om' written on her palm in the spectacular video), it is haunting (especially the chorus), wierd and beautiful in equal measure. A magic spell seems to be cast on the listener, as Madonna beckons "give yourself to me". Orchestral music and a strong but random-sounding drum backup add to the grandeur of this majestic song, and Madonna's clear voice really adds the icing to this most delicious of cakes - my favourite song of all. Power Of Goodbye is another great song. The intro is incredibly cool and the blue-hued video sees Madonna looking simply stunning without any embellishment, healthy and shining. The theme of the song is the end of a relationship. To Have And Not To Hold is a very capable song, but it suffers from following the previous few songs. The Indian theme is maintained, with the repetition of a Sanskrit phrase from Shanti/Ashtangi, and it is about how the relationship is there, but not complete. Little Star is, quite clearly, about Madonna's daughter Lourdes. Charming and full of motherly love, the song gently instructs the baby to "never forget who you are, Little Star" and thanks God for the present. Mer Girl is the last song in the album and it is so wierd, it can put you off. There's always one, isn't there. But stick at it, listen to it with your eyes closed and with no distractions, and you'll discover that it is actually really good. Filled with spoken word, it draws you into its dreamworld and is depressing and haunting. Another spine-chiller, though it doesn't try to frighten. A strange, but fitting end to this emotional, sometime downbeat, sometimes vibrant album. This complicated, spiritual album came after the birth of Lourdes, Madonna's daughter. Whether it was this, or the singing lessons Madonna received before Evita, or both, Madonna's voice has definitely grown and has acquired some new dimensions to it. Orbit's contribution cannot be overemphasised, but it is Madonna who lifted him up from relative obscurity more than him reviving her career. In my opinion, easily her best original album to date.


Page: 1