Thursday, January 7, 2010

My Favourite Albums Of ALL TIME! #1 Madonna Ray of Light [1998]
A few years before Ray of Light was released, Madonna went through a bit of a career backlash. She took her sex filled image to new heights in her 'Justify My Love' video in 1990. Then she released her 'Erotica' album a couple years after, alongside her nude coffee table book called SEX. By the end of 1992, she'd gone from Madonna to Vagonna!, and the media was having a field day keeping their eye on her constant publicity stunts and over sexualized image. Once her 1994 album hit, 'Bedtime Stories', critics claimed her reign as Queen of pop may be over. Her record sales weren't as strong as they used to be, and people were getting sick of her.
Madonna took some time off, she had a baby [Lola] and eventually won back critics praises with her performance in the movie musical 'Evita'.

In 1998, 4 years after her last album, she was ready to make a comeback, so she unleashed what many fans and critics consider to be the best album of her career, Ray of Light!.
On ROL she joined forces with music producer William Orbit, and Madonna's love affair with electronic music was BORN!. The album was her most personal at the time. It deals with issues about the sacrifices she made for fame, motherhood, and her new found spirituality. The album goes between ambient synths [To Have & Not To Hold], heavy bass driven dance numbers [Skin], and rock light mid tempo tracks [Candy Perfume Girl]. There's also a couple ballads on this album that i consider to be some of the best songs she ever did, those being 'The Power of Goodbye' and my all time favourite Madonna song, 'Frozen'.
The album has a very strong ethereal and aquatic feel to it. You'd think Madonna was dipping her head in and out of the ocean while making this album, ha!.

The album starts off on a quiet note, but slowly builds into a beautifully produced electronic masterpiece. The track listing from tracks #5-#11 are perfect in every way. It's one mind blowing song after another. Then the album goes out on a quiet note again. The only track on the album that doesn't do all that much for me, is the last song, 'Mer Girl'. In saying that though, it fits well with the rest of the album, and is one of the most interesting songs she's done, so i wouldn't get rid of it, it's still an important part of the journey.

When people ask me what my favourite album of all time is, i usually say this one. There are a handful of other albums that could fit the #1 spot easily depending on my mood, but Ray of Light is the one i mention the most. You'd think i'd be playing the album every week since i love it so much, but that isn't the case at all. In fact, i only play the album as a whole a couple times a year. I've heard it so much over the years, that i need to be in the right mood for it. I do love it to death though.

Ray of Light seems to be the ONE Madonna album none fans own. I love that about it. Similar to 'Like A Prayer', it stands on it's own feet as a special project separate from her more fluffier pop albums.
It's honest and atmospheric. You haven't heard what she's capable of until you've heard this album. It's the best thing she's EVER done.

1. Drowned World/Substitute For Love 5/5
2. Swim 4/5
3. Ray of Light 4/5
4. Candy Perfume Girl 4/5
5. Skin 5/5
6. Nothing Really Matters 5/5
7. Sky Fits Heaven 5/5
8. Shanti/Ashtangi 5/5
9. Frozen 5/5
10. The Power of Goodbye 5/5
11. To Have & Not To Hold 5/5
12. Little Star 4/5
13. Mer Girl 3/5

1 comment:

Mas OvaltinePls said...


Never been a Madonna fan. She's whiney.