You need to get over your ageism and listen to Madonna’s ‘Rebel Heart’ [album review]

Madonna - Rebel Heart - album

The last time I liked a Madonna album, I was still a baby. I just came out of the closet, and “Hung Up” was the soundtrack of my mostly drunk, young gay life.

After Confessions on a Dance Floor though, things quickly went south for Madge. With songs like “4 Minutes, “Give It 2 Me” and “Give Me All Your Luvin,” the Material Girl was following the trend instead of setting it for much of the aughts. She was chasing the sound of emerging pop stars at the expense of her own music.

That’s why I was very hesitant when I first heard about Rebel Heart, her 13th studio album. With collaborations with the likes of Avicii, Diplo, Kanye West and Nicki Minaj, it seemed like the Queen of Pop was once again just going with the flow. I was worried her new material won’t sound revolutionary at all. That she was, once again, simply doing what others were already doing.

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The definitive ranking of Kelly Clarkson’s ‘Piece By Piece’ tracks [album review]

Kelly Clarkson - Piece by Piece - album cover photo

Let’s start with the obvious here: Piece By Piece is Kelly Clarkson’s best album so far. And no, I’m not saying that just because I’m a huge stan. I’m saying it because it’s the truth.

But why is it her best, you ask? For one, this is her most experimental album to date. I know that’s not saying much–after all, when you’re doing pop music, how “experimental” could you really be? It’s relative and subjective. However, by combining elements of RnB, bubblegum pop, and EDM in one cohesive record, Clarkson has outdone herself. She’s also never sounded so sure.

I like all of the songs from Piece By Piece, but here’s a totally subjective ranking of all the tracks. (Just don’t ask me to rank them again in a month–I’m sure my favorites will change again then.)

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Taylor Swift makes a proper pop debut in 1989 [album review]

Taylor Swift - 1989

So here’s a confession: I currently can’t stop listening to Taylor Swift’s 1989. I admit this with some shame because the truth is, I wasn’t a fan of the country superstar until a few weeks ago. It’s not that she used to make bad music—I actually liked some of her older stuff. But this record is more ballsy, more confident, and more grown up than anything she’s ever released. And the music is pretty good, too.

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Jessie Ware – Tough Love [album review]

Jessie Ware - Tough Love (album review)

Last month, Jessie Ware released Tough Love, her sophomore album and her follow-up to the brilliant Devotion. Unlike fellow Brits Sam Smith, Ellie Goulding or Adele, Jessie Ware isn’t a household name yet in North America despite having critical acclaim. This album will not change that, and that’s ok. This record showcases her underrated talent just fine.

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