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What would “MDNA” Week be without a review for “MDNA”!? It would suck, so here we go… Being a life-long Madonna fan, I usually get really excited before the release of a new album. With “MDNA“, her 12th released this week, there was a lot more apprehension than excitement. The biggest fears came from the two singles “Give Me All Your Luvin'” and “Girl Gone Wild” which seemed very uninspired coming from a Queen whose known for taking risks and pushing boundaries. “Luvin'” came off entirely too Young and Pop-ish to be taken seriously, while “Girl” felt like standard Dance/Pop Top 40 fare with nothing at all intriguing or new. The fear for “MDNA” was that it would be way too commercial and have Madonna, a LEGEND, dumbing down her sound to fit in with the Katy Perry’s and Ke$ha’s of the world. Luckily, the album isn’t too far into the “Desperate Young-sounding angle”, but it’s also not far enough into the “Mature Adult Artist angle” either. The end result being a very mish-mosh and uneven album even when it has some great shining moments. What the album really needed was a objective editor, the album is a bit over-long and with a bunch of filler. Had certain songs been taken out, the album would have felt better on the whole. Songs like “Some Girls” “Superstar” (Lady GaGa and Katy Perry sounding, respectively) and “Best Friend” are so run of the mill, they have no place on the album which at it’s best moments does try to reach for new ground — or at least involves more thoughtful and creative production, which those songs do not. Eliminating the Basic would have benefited the album and made the strong cuts stand out even more. Speaking on the highlights though, “Gang Bang” is a very interesting and intense production (though the lyrics getting repetitive and annoying after a while). “Love Spent” has word play and very intriguing and ever changing production. I happen to love when Madonna get’s all 60’s on us with “B-Day Song” and another stand out track “I’m A Sinner”, she sounds more alive and confident on these tracks than pretty much anything else on the album. While “I F**cked Up” is a stellar electro-ballad that’s easily the most heartfelt and personal on the album (without being too maudlin like say “Falling Free”). “MDNA” fulfills the Madonna-itch that most of her fans have been feeling since the let-down of “Hard Candy” nearly 4 years ago, but as an album it doesn’t feel as cohesive as that album. As fans we expect a lot from Madonna, and the new album doesn’t do much to show the Artist we know she can be. Fun, Danceable, Catchy… yes! However 12 albums in, Madonna should be giving us a lot more than just that. 3 of 5 Best: I’m A Sinner, I Fvcked Up, Love Spent