Sunday, May 4, 2008
Madonna's Hard Candy
Approaching 50 years old with this release, Madonna can no longer pretend to be the young seductress. So 50 is the new 40? The new 30? Madonna doesn't aim for a precise number. Instead, she works to make time itself irrelevant. 2008's Hard Candy, a few technological tones aside, could just as easily have come out in the mid-80s, the mid-90, or anytime during her long, enduring career. It's Madonna on the dancefloor, letting the rhythms and producers do the heavy lifting while her voice skates over the grooves with a sultry reassurance that at this point is the sound of an old familiar comrade letting you know she's still fighting the good fight. Timbaland, the Nepturnes, and Nate "Danja" Hills add their production touches, but it's Madonna's reflective touch that delivers the somber twists of "Devil Wouldn't Recognize You," the nostalgic glaze of "Incredible" where she admits, "I Wanna go back to then," and the "Everybody" tint of "heartbeat" where she states, "It may be old to you but it feels new to me." At this point she's riding the wave, hanging on for dear life and making it every bit the adventure we've come to expect from her career.
Madonna’s eleventh, and final, studio album for Warner Bros., Hard Candy is a brilliant up-tempo collection that adds a hip-hop beat to the cultural icon’s club sensibilities, thanks to collaborations with Timbaland, Justin Timberlake, Pharrell Williams, and Nate "Danja" Hills. Following her previous studio album, 2005’s Confessions On A Dance Floor, which debuted #1 and has sold more than 8 million copies around the globe, Hard Candy punctuates the first 25 years of the album career of the most successful female artist in history with a musical exclamation point.