REVIEW #1 and REVIEW #2). These songs will show that, for inspiration, Madonna need not look any further than her own work. Kicking off the newly released songs is the track that sounds like what would have happened if Madonna had those rumored songwriting sessions with Adele, HeartBreakCity. A lovely ballad with a gorgeous melody, it fits very nicely into the cannon of Madonna's slow songs. Body Shop is an ode to a lover that is trusted to turn our Lady out. With plenty of metaphors (tighten up the suspension, you don't have to ask it), this mid-tempo burner is easy-going, pretty and sassy. Holy Water, co-written by (among others) Natalia Kills, is a dance floor workout. Thinly veiled lyrics about cunnilingus (Don't it taste like holy water?) Madonna takes you back to those naughty Erotica days, professing that "Yeezus love my p***y best". Oh, my!!! There is also a surprise call out to Vogue that makes my toes curl. YAAAS!! Definitely a standout track and I'm sure will be all over the clubs this summer. Inside Out is a dark, beautiful song about an intense relationship. How is this not in 50 Shades of Grey? Maybe it is. I haven't seen it. Anyway, the song is a pulsating, sexy joyride. Madonna's vocals on the lovely Wash All Over Me are some of the clearest on the album. The ballad is about surrender and letting life take you sometimes. Gorgeous and epic. Another sexy romp starts with Best Night, a come-hither number with shades of Indian influence. This is some baby-making (or baby-wasting,depending on your orientation) music here that even references Madonna's sexiest hit ever, Justify My Love. Veni Vidi Vici (ft. Nas) starts with a rap by Madge talking about her past, (and when I struck a pose, all the gay boys lost their minds) referencing many of her hits over the years. She talks about her rise and how she forged her way to success, "I came. I saw. I conquered" she repeats over the chorus. S.E.X. is one of the songs that I'm sure will bring an avalanche of ageist comments from the mindless masses, but to me it's nice to see a woman OF ANY AGE expressing her sexuality. As long as I'm not related to her. Ha! Madonna has never shied away from the subject and Rebel Heart is no exception (I'm an open door. Let you come inside of me). You boys will love this. Messiah is all grandeur and regal. It's another epic ballad with lovelorn lyrics and a gorgeous melody. Closing the (deluxe version) of the album is its title track. Rebel Heart is an ode to all not just Madonna's endurance, but to any visionary who has always felt different and refused to not change. Those who fought through "tough love" and were finally able to say what they wanted to say. You can say it's exactly what Madonna, the undisputed female pop icon of the modern music era, has done from the very beginning of her storied career. Rebel Heart is an eclectic, yet cohesive, album of some of the most focused and finest music Madonna has released since Confessions On A Dance Floor. An epic journey of an artist in her third decade of super-stardom who refuses to idle. An exciting trip down memory lane, into the present and looking firmly forward.
MUST HAVE TRACKS: Ghosstown, Unapologetic Bitch, Illuminati, Hold Tight, Holy Water, Wash All Over Me.