As much as everyone loves to hate her, her power of survival and tour de force performance skills are undeniable.‚ She’s back, and with a vengeance. Britney Spears’ much anticipated‚ 6th album,‚ Circus,‚ hits stores December 2 on the pop queen’s 27th birthday and delivers enough dance beats to fill even the rowdiest clubs and get the most reluctant critic dancing.‚
And what a media circus it has been for Britney, essentially since the day she stepped onto the scene back when she was just 16 years old in 1997. While her latest album “Blackout” fell short of expectations and took a backseat to her custody battles and driving violations, there were a few hits that helped her maintain afloat.‚ Circus,‚ however is sure to pack a punch that will throw the critics and surprise the masses.‚
“Phonography” at first hear has silly, innuendo-filled‚ lyrics, but the beat is so intoxicating it completely makes up for it and you end up loving the lyrics, giggling at Britney’s utter‚ honesty. Sometimes, it’s easy to forget she is a nearly 30-year-old mother of two, rather that teen girl growing up in the spotlight and being awkward and naive. The song hints at Ace of Base’s beats and melodies, and it actually works. With self-proclaimed unapologetic lyrics that border on the extremely inappropriate, this song is for adults only.‚
“Amnesia” has a bit of an 80s throwback vibe, and is wistful and fun.‚ Forget hinting‚ at Ace of Base’s heyday in the early 90s with electronic sounds and a sugary feel, this song emanates their sound and it actually lends a new dimension to Britney’s sound.‚ “Kill the Lights” is a feisty lash out at the paparazzi. Thanks to a male announcer saying at the beginning of the song “here is a message from the world’s pop princess now pop queen …” the song showcases Britney’s arrogance, which actually might end up being mis-judged confidence.
There is nothing wrong with‚ confidence, even over-confidence,‚ especially when you have the dancing talent, wow-factor and resurrection chops to back it up. Granted, Britney never was the best singer, but that’s not what she is. She is not a singer, she is an entertainer; pure and simple. Yes she can carry a tune, and she projects fairly well, but the nitty-gritty is the girl can‚ perform and after all of the bad press and judgement passed on her these past few years, she has come back and is saying to the world “Want to‚ talk about me more? Talk about how great this album is!”
Other standouts on the CD include “If You Seek Amy,” “Lace and Leather,” and of course the first single “Womanizer” a radio favorite which receives frequent airplay in clubs and bars since its arrival a few months ago. This album is not just an effort by what can be mildly labeled a pop diva, but is a very sharp comment on her life in the limelight, and how she is knowingly an exhibitionist and in many ways, a masochist.
Overall the music on this new album is classic Britney, filled with evocative lyrics, enticing dance beats and thanks to the help of her production team, complex sounds that only add. While I’m positive not everyone out there is looking forward to this album to drop, Britney fans will be pleased with her ability to survive and to put out a CD that will make for a great show when she goes on tour, expected in early 2009. As many onlookers wait with bated breath, they may be turning blue at the potential success of‚ Circus.‚ ‚
She can thank all of those producers who helped make these songs three-dimensional and irresistible for any and all praise she may or may not receive. Those producers include‚ including Max Martin, The Outsyders, Danja, Bloodshy & Avant and The Underdogs who lend much needed artistic direction while maintaining Brit-Brit’s dance queen image. She can also thank‚ all of the personal trainers and what has to be a ridiculously patient entourage to help her with the everyday demands of being a pop star worth millions. Not to mention her quirky personality, outbursts and foibles that make her a media magnet, mostly for negative exposure.‚
Circus‚ will arrive in stores in the U.S. on the heels of the documentary‚ Britney: For the Record‚ airing Sunday Nov. 30‚ at 10 p.m. ‚ on MTV. The film follows the Spears‚ for three months, beginning Sept. 7, the day she appeared on the MTV Video Music Awards.‚
Whether you love her, hate her, are apathetic, or waiting on the edge of your seat for her to fail, the fact is Britney Spears is back, and perhaps better than ever.