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In celebration of the release of the Queen of Pop’s latest material, this week Luxe Models breaks down new Madonna release Rebel Heart track-by-track…

The Ultimate Pop Culture Trendsetter

Madonna_-_Rebel_Heart_(Official_Album_Cover) Luxe ModelsThere are few inhabitants of the A-list Luxe Models loves as much as we love Madonna. The Queen of Pop is a pop culture trendsetter who has determined what we listen to, what we wear and even what we think since she first crashed onto the scene back in the early 80’s.

Over the course of 2014 we’ve become gradually more excited, as the Queen of Pop spent most of the year releasing hints on Instagram teasing what shape her new project is destined to take. Yet as 2014 started drawing to a close events took a nasty turn for the provocateur, forcing Madonna to resort to drastic measures to protect the integrity of her latest project.

Fighting Fire with Fire

It all started a few weeks ago. As December dawned, a number of leaks started to surface online. At first it was just a few demos. Nothing too serious. However, the situation ended up getting a whole lot more real when hackers decided to release demo versions of the entire album track list onto the World Wide Web.

Madonna was floored. After labelling the move ‘artistic rape’ among other things, she chose to fight fire with fire. The weekend before December 25th she chose to take on the role of Santa, and gift her fans with an early Christmas present. She released six official tracks from new album Rebel Heart onto ITunes.

Track-by-Track Review

What a gift it was. Six tracks that exemplify the Queen of Pop at her best, many are saying that if the entire Rebel Heart project matches the quality of her first release, it could be her best album in a decade. Here is Rebel Heart track-by-track…

  • Living for Love: Destined to serve as Rebel Heart’s lead single, ‘Living for Love’ can only be described as a win for the Queen of Pop. A deep house/gospel track characterised by gospel vocals, 90’s-style piano strains and epic beats, ‘Living for Love’ is a treat for the ears. It combines everything we’ve loved about Madonna throughout her lengthy tenure at the top of the charts. If you’re a fan of ‘Like a Prayer’ or ‘Express Yourself,’ ‘Living for Love’ is the track for you.
  • Devil Pray: When Madonna gets confessional, sh*t gets real, and there’s nothing realer on Rebel Heart than ‘Devil Pray.’ Evocative of ‘Don’t Tell Me,’ Devil Pray explores the search for spiritual truth, as well as the desperate lengths many have taken to attain such highs throughout their years on this earth.
  • Ghosttown: It’s high praise when you’re compared to Karen Carpenter, and Billboard-produced ‘Ghosttown’ has constantly been compared with the song-writer’s best since it was first release. Describing the plight of lovers in a post-apocalyptic world, ‘Ghosttown’ with it’s clashing beats, deep lyrical content and stellar vocals definitely harks back to the singer’s Ray of Light era, reminding us all of just how gifted a song-writer Madonna can be when she puts her all into crafting a killer track.
  • Unapologetic Bitch: When you’re thinking of artists whose style you can compare to the Queen of Pop’s, Rihanna doesn’t immediately come to mind. Yet the release of dancehall-infused ‘Unapologetic Bitch’ has you thinking of Riri the minute it’s Caribbean beats begin to blare. Here we see what Madonna means by the ‘rebel’ in Rebel Heart. She tells it like it is because she really is an unapologetic bitch.
  • Illuminati: What is the illuminati? If trolls on the internet are to be believed, it’s a cabal of A-listers and politicians who’ve conspired to run the world from the comfort of their ivory towers. It’s this misconception that the Queen of Pop chooses to explore on Kanye West-produced ‘Illuminati.’ Whilst it’s dark Yeezus-inspired production proves compelling, it’s the lyrical content of ‘Illuminati’ that’s the real draw. Madonna’s at her best when she strives to challenge our perceptions of truth, and she strives on ‘Illuminati’ like never before to help us find that grain of truth among the desert of lies.
  • Bitch, I’m Madonna: Madonna’s third collaboration with Nicki Minaj, ‘Bitch, I’m Madonna’ is as sassy, in-your-face and outright bold as you would expect from a track featuring the word ‘bitch’ in it’s title. Yet if we’re honest, this is our least favourite Rebel Heart offering to-date. It’s certainly a fun track but it lacks the lyrical mastery that characterises every other song we’ve seen from Rebel Heart so far.

Rising Above Contemporaries Half Her Age

In other words, the Queen of Pop has defied the haters, embraced her inner artist and done it again. So far, Rebel Heart has been a triumph for the ultimate provocateur. When she stops trying to follow the Mileys and Ariannas of the world, she’s capable of producing pop gold on a level contemporaries half her age won’t be able to hit if they lived to make music until they breathe their last breath.

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