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Celebration - Madonna

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Genre: Pop - Dance Pop / Artist: Madonna / Audio CD released 2009-09-21 at Warner Bros

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

    4 Reviews
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    • More +
      22.06.2012 10:56
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      Madonna - Celebration

      Madonna - Celebration

      It is the third Greatest Hits album by Madonna and is also available as DVD. The album also contains three new songs and the album contains 18 songs total. The Deluxe version contains 36 songs. This is the standard version. The songs are focused on pop and dance genre. Below is a discussion of some songs:

      Hung Up
      Hung Up is one of the new songs of Madonna. When you listen you will recognize the tune of ABBA's Gimme Gimme more. It is a good dance song with a good up tempo beat. It's a bit overproduced and especially the voice of Madonna's is electro-like, but it certainly sounds good to my ears.

      Music
      This number is equal to the electro pop music influences and the song begins with a male voice saying: 'DJ put the record on. I wanna dance with my baby. "Then comes the whole clear electro beat to the fore after about 20 seconds, the voice of Madonna is soft and the infectious beat is clearly there. It is a more mid tempo song which certainly sounds good.

      Like a Virgin
      One of the most famous songs of Madonna's Like A Virgin. The obvious younger Madonna has a much rougher voice that certainly fits well with this song. The song is a mid tempo song and what is primarily a teasing number. Even now it would be good fit in the top 40 with a minor change. Definitely catchy song.

      Like a Prayer
      A nice dramatic song Like a Prayer with church influences as the organ. Madonna begins the song with a calm voice after dramatically the tempo goes up. Quite dramatically the song has a choir in the background. A good original song that definitely should not be missed on this album.

      Ray of Light
      Ray Of Light is an song where Madonna clearly struck a somewhat different way. It still has the electro pop influences with a dance background, but it's also kind of esoteric. It shows again how good Madonna has grown and funny enough you can hear a big difference in her voice. The rawness is definitely gone.

      Secret
      With secret comes suddenly the guitar and dance electro influences are all suddenly gone. A very laid back song with mostly just the guitar and the voice of Madonna. A pleasant change. A nice song.

      Erotica
      I think the title of this song says enough. The song sounds a bit teasing and Madonna has a sexual voice again. The explicit lyrics fit the song title and the groans here and there of course fits well with. A fairly good song with a nice mid tempo beat.

      Express Yourself
      Another classic is the song Express Yourself. It's a nice happy upbeat pop song and really a song to dance to. The pace remains good throughout the song good. It has electro influences, but they are still more the drums beat what the states. Just a nice upbeat song.

      Conclusion

      It is a good collection of songs from the last few albums from Madonna. The last released songs like 4 Minutes and Hung Up make the album more modern, but I'm glad there are old songs like Like A Virgin and Like A Prayer. The album clearly shows the difference of the Madonna then and now, yet you recognize certain elements to say that they are typical Madonna songs. I certainly was not disappointed with this album and it's a nice collection.

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      21.03.2010 12:27
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      The greatest greatest hits

      Love her or hate her, you can't deny the amazing musical presence that is Madonna. Since the 1980s, she has been one of the most prolific recording artists in the world, constantly re-inventing her music and image to explore new directions and selling bucket loads of records along the way. To date, in the UK alone, Madonna has had thirteen number one singles and eleven number one albums (the eleventh of which I'm about to review.) I have enormous admiration and affection for Madonna. I have literally grown up alongside a continuous soundtrack of Madonna classics and associate so many of her songs with moments in my life.

      Celebration marks the culmination of her recording career with Warner Bros, the label to which she has been signed way back since the 1980s. Having signed a deal with the Live Nation label, it clearly seemed appropriate and (dare I say) lucrative to release one more greatest hits compilation to mark the end of an era and the beginning of a new one. Indeed, Celebration is Madonna's third official greatest hits compilation in the UK, following The Immaculate Collection in 1990 and GHV2 in 2001. Something to Remember, released in 1995, was a combination of new and previously released love songs, but isn't considered to be a greatest hits volume.

      The Format(s)

      This is confusing. Concentrate.

      In the UK, there are two physical formats for the album. One features eighteen tracks on one disc, the other more comprehensive 'special edition' (the focus of this review) features thirty-six tracks across two discs. Curiously, the single disc edition is often more expensive online and I'm at a loss to understand why anyone might buy that one.

      On the iTunes store, a similar situation exists, albeit one that is priced rather more logically. The 'deluxe' version is the equivalent of the 'special' edition and features thirty-eight tracks (the same track listing as the double disc, but with two bonus tracks). It's currently priced at £12.99. The standard version of the album features the same tracks as the single disc edition and is priced at £9.99. To complicate matters more, there are also physical editions with a DVD of the videos.

      All in, I'd recommend the physical, audio special edition, which will probably set you back around £6.99 - a bargain by anyone's standards.

      ==The Virgin Years==

      Madonna's earliest years are well covered here with eight of ten singles released featured on the album. To many, these are the 'archetypal' Madonna tracks, reminiscent of an era of excess. In the UK, Holiday and Borderline rank as two of the singer's best known tunes, and both have been re-released on one more than one occasion. Whilst the era was dominated in the UK by the heavily synthesised New Romantic sound, anthems like Holiday had their roots firmly in the discotheques of New York. This was a look and sound that defined a whole generation of copycats and saw Madonna emerging into a new found level of confidence.

      There was a youthful innocence about Madonna's provocative behaviour at this time that she soon outgrew. Whilst she cavorted in 'that' lace wedding dress, there was something much cheekier than we would see a decade or more later. The music was outstanding and whilst strongly associated with the time, it ages extremely well. Songs like Holiday and Like A Virgin were (and remain) school disco classics. Produced in conjunction with a DJ known as Jellybean, these were songs based in funky beats, simple melodies and (surprisingly) raw vocals from the singer, who listening back now, sounded young, fresh and inspiring. Borderline, for me, remains one of the best love songs of all time. This is a heartfelt anthem to the way that love can make you feel so bad but it's actually surprisingly up-tempo and hasn't really aged a day. Others will favour the smoky, sultry sound of Crazy For You (probably one of the most popular wedding songs of all time.) But the stand out song of the era must, however, be Into The Groove, probably the best dance/club song ever. You could drop this on any dance floor at any time and everybody would get up and dance.

      The album makes one or two surprising choices from this era. Everybody and Burning Up never actually charted in the UK and remain relatively unknown songs in the UK, but both are featured here. More disappointingly, however, neither Angel nor Dress You Up are featured here, even though all the other tracks featured here were also featured on The Immaculate Collection. Lucky Star is featured here, but ranks as one of my least favourite Madonna songs of all time. The entire arrangement is so shrill compared to everything else - I'd have probably left this one out.

      ==Into Adulthood==

      True Blue was one of those albums that defined the 1980s. Nearly everybody had this album. Indeed, this will always remain a very special album for me because this was the first album I bought on cassette AND vinyl. True Blue topped the album chart in 28 countries and was nominated by many as the album of the decade. This was the first time that Madonna's music really sounded as though it 'meant' something to her. She co-wrote all the songs on the album and it was during this time that she started to grow up. There was a new maturity in her sound and a genuine versatility. Most of the tracks released from the album made number one in the UK.

      Live To Tell is a powerful, haunting ballad and was also featured in a film starring her then husband Sean Penn. There's a sombre almost sinister sound to this song that even now sends a shiver down my spine. Papa Don't Preach will probably always be the most rebellious song that Madonna has ever released. Announcing the tribulations of an unwanted pregnancy, there's an upbeat hopefulness about this song that seemed to connect with an entire generation. Open Your Heart and La Isla Bonita continued the dance/pop themes here, the latter seeing Madonna verge towards her Hispanic roots for the first time. This was the era when Madonna's film choices started to haunt her, too. Who's That Girl grossed just $7 million, although it generated another number one single in the UK with the title track (a lesser known Madonna song in retrospect and a welcome addition to this collection.)

      Madonna continued her partnership with Patrick Leonard into the next album, Like A Prayer that saw the singer courting real controversy for the first time. Images of burning crosses and a black Jesus Christ in the video for Like A Prayer virtually guaranteed her a number one single and album, but the furore seemed to overshadow the fact that this was almost a perfect pop/dance song. It was also a period that saw Madonna catapulted into mainstream club land in the UK as a host of remixes started to appear for many of the single released off the album. But there was still tremendous variety to the sound. Cherish is still one of the sweetest pop songs that I can think of, replete with its gorgeously simple vocals and that wonderful video with the mermaids in it. It was around this time that Madonna was really starting to emerge as a gay icon, but it was a song that shared its name with a fashion magazine that cemented that position.

      Taken from the soundtrack to the film adaptation of I'm Breathless, Vogue is, for many, the definitive Madonna anthem. At the time, a dance craze was hugely popular on the New York gay scene, in which dancers would pose lavishly with their hands and bodies to imitate their favourite Hollywood actors and actresses. It's an incredibly camp idea, which, in all honesty, now seems vaguely ridiculous but Madonna and producer Shep Pettibone shrewdly observed this craze and brought it into the mainstream. Directed by David Fincher (who went on to direct Se7en) the video cemented the song's popularity, which (ironically) had originally been recorded as a B-side. The song was released at a time when I was starting to explore my own sexuality and, as such, will always have a strong emotional connection. As a song in its own right, it has dated somewhat now, but remains one of the highlights of Madonna's career.

      Notable absences on the album from this era include True Blue (number one in the UK but STILL not featured on any hits collection). The second single from Who's That Girl (Causing a Commotion) is sorely missed here - funky lyrics and beats put this up there on a level with the likes of Into The Groove and this was probably the last disco-inspired tune that she would release for a decade. Oh Father (which was a pretty depressing tune about the death of her father) is certainly not missed here but it was a mistake to omit Dear Jessie, which remains the closest thing to a Christmas single that Madonna has ever produced. There's a playful childishness to Dear Jessie (recorded by Madonna as her interpretation of a lullaby) and it deserves a place here. Hanky Panky, however, does not. The follow-up to Vogue is thankfully missing here and few will miss the ridiculously overt vocal and tacky 'Busgy Malone' arrangement.

      ==Dirty and Sultry==

      By modern standards, Madonna's first greatest hits compilation was way overdue, coming some eighteen years after she first graced the UK singles chart. It was an astounding success, partly because it was actually a remix compilation with some of the older tunes remastered or mixed to sound fresher and cleaner. The album contained two new tracks, one of which is featured and was the catalyst to a more controversial era for the singer. Justify My Love was a collaboration with Lenny Kravitz and was really nothing more than Madonna gasping and moaning her way through a swirlingly erotic arrangement of beats and vocals. It was a genuinely sensual song, working its way wickedly across the dance floor or around the radio but it was the X-rated video that caused the biggest storm, promptly finding itself banned on MTV. The success of Justify My Love, however, led to a new deal including a book, a film and an album all centred around Madonna's favourite subject. Sex.

      The Erotica album stands as one of Madonna's most critically-reviled albums, which is actually a shame because it contains some good tunes and the sexuality of the whole thing is really no more or less than any Madonna disc. It's clearly not an era that Madonna or her record company favour, however, as of the five singles released from the album, only one is featured here - the title track Erotica. It's a shame because it's probably the weakest track on the album, a sort of pop/dance jaunt that takes all the bad bits from Justify My Love and makes them far worse. The 'Sex' era was probably Madonna's lowest point and lost her a lot of credibility.

      The next album, Bedtime Stories, was a much better informed decision and saw Madonna reinvent herself in a slower, more soulful incarnation, apparently trying to win back the listeners that she had previously alienated. Produced in collaboration with the likes of Babyface and Nellee Hooper (of Soul II Soul fame) this was Madonna's first attempt to connect with a more urban style of music, and whilst the gay discos didn't lap it up quite so much, it yielded some solid and mature material. The leading single Secret (featured here) taught Madonna how to be sensual without being dirty and is a sumptuous, mellow love song. The only other track featured here (Take A Bow) was somewhat out of sorts with the overall sound of the album. Whilst it's a beautiful love song, it has a very different arrangement and has much grander, music-hall sound - a pre-emptive move to the next stage in Madonna's career.

      Notable omissions from this era include Rescue Me (the unmemorable partner to Justify My Love on The Immaculate Collection) and the four other singles from Erotica. Fever is perhaps the most overlooked here - a triumphant, ballsy cover of the Carole King classic, it has a sort of breathless energy about it that was missed in the furore over the rest of the album. Ballad Rain brought Madonna back to her more sombre roots and sounds not unlike Live To Tell - a fact that probably sealed its fate and ensured it wouldn't be featured here. Two singles from Bedtime Stories are missing here. The title track Bedtime Story was co-written with Bjork, which means that you might have expected it here, although it is rather wishy-washy. Bondage anthem Human Nature replete with swearing is, understandably, brushed under the musical carpet. Most notable, however, is the exclusion of I'll Remember, a movie-based love theme that was to be her first collaboration with a producer named William Orbit.

      ==Madonna Grows Up==

      It was at this time that Madonna finally found the approval she had long sought from the film industry (and audiences) for her leading role in the musical Evita. Whilst none of the music from the movie is featured here, the benefits of vocal coaching were felt throughout all of Madonna's subsequent releases, most strikingly and most immediately through the release of Ray of Light. A deeply personal collaboration with William Orbit, Madonna once again reinvented herself into a new genre of haunting, trance-like pop that was copied many times over. Leading single Frozen saw the singer back at the top of the charts and rightly so. The rich, almost ethereal vocals sang about new themes and concepts - not so much about love and life any more as the singer had clearly learnt some life lessons. The follow up single, Ray of Light, was a more energetic (almost frantic) number and typical of the Orbit sound, which became immensely popular. Indeed, it led to Madonna's involvement in the hugely popular Austin Powers movie, with Beautiful Stranger featuring in the film and getting a place here.

      Madonna was suddenly very cool and again, and producers seemed to be queuing up to work with her. The next album, Music, saw the singer collaborate with French House DJ Mirwais for another almost entirely different sound. A bleepy, stop-start kind of house music, it propelled Madonna back to the dance floors. The opening single, Music, hit number one - and rightly so. It typified everything that Madonna had ever stood for and despite the modern sound, had a lot in common with her earlier, disco-fused material. Madonna once again worked with Mirwais for the follow up, American Life, but it was a darker, more politically fuelled, cynical album and didn't seem to connect with audiences in the same way. She risked the wrath of countless film goers but taking this sound into the James Bond movies when she was offered the title track to Die Another Day. It's Marmite stuff for sure - probably (for me) the best Bond anthem ever, but many will disagree.

      There are some disappointing absences from this era. To not include ANY of the songs from Evita seems like an oversight, particularly the cover of Don't Cry For Me Argentina, which really demonstrated Madonna's capability as more than just a pop singer. Dwarfed by the likes of Frozen, three singles from Ray of Light are missing here, most notably The Power of Goodbye, which once again shows the album's bias against the slower tracks. From Music, we don't get What It Feels Like For A Girl, which is disappointing given that it saw Madonna collaborate with legendary trance DJ Paul Oakenfold for the first time. The much-reviled cover version of American Pie is also missing here, despite hitting the number one spot in the UK - a real shame, as I personally think this was one of Madonna's best cover versions. The title track from American Life is absent (notable for featuring Madonna rapping for the first time and arguably the strongest song on the album). Love Profusion (featured in a perfume commercial) also gets the chop. The embarrassing collaboration with Britney Spears (Me Against the Music) is thankfully overlooked here too.

      ==Everything Comes Full Circle==

      For Madonna's last two albums with Warner Bros, she once again reinvented herself, although arguably, she just regenerated back into the musical values on which her career was founded. Her Confessions on a Dance Floor album was huge, particularly in Europe and the singer once again reiterated her status as the ultimate gay icon. Lead single Hung Up was probably the most perfect gay anthem of all time featuring an instrumental sample from Abba's Gimme Gimme Gimme alongside a new Madonna vocal. The follow-up single was just as strong (and also made number one in the UK). Both songs amply demonstrate the slick production and polished arrangement of the Confessions dance floor, whilst both the videos amply demonstrated how good a 50 year-old singer could look in a leotard.

      Madonna's most recent studio album was yet another reinvention, this time down a more urban, R & B route, with a cornucopia of sounds and styles from various collaborators. Kanye West, Timbaland, Justin Timberlake and The Neptunes featured heavily here, either on production or vocal duties. Lead single 4 Minutes, a duet with Justin Timberlake, was a brash combination of different instruments (including brass and cow bells) alongside a speedy vocal about saving the world. A later single, Miles Away, is also (somewhat curiously) featured here. It's a good enough song, but given its limited commercial sales (it only just scraped the top 40) it seems odd to include it here when number one singles are missing.

      The album also features two new tracks. Sharing the same name as the album, Celebration sees Madonna back with Paul Oakenfold, who has remixed several of the songs featured on this and other albums. The song is remarkably simple and (arguably) not particularly special for its role on the album. The album version is a simple pop/trance hit that vocally sounds very like the singer's earliest material. For the commercial release, the track was passed to DJ Benny Benassi (who had supported Madonna on certain European tour dates) and completely reinvented into an elecro trance tune, with marked success. The second track, Revolver, stands as Madonna's least successful UK single, reaching number 130 on the charts. It deserves far more attention than it has received, notably the David Guetta remixes that beef up the otherwise basic electropop sound.

      This is probably my favourite Madonna era of all time. There's something assured about the singer on these latter two albums. It's as those she has finally accepted that she's cool and she doesn't care what anyone else says or does. It would be wrong for Celebration to feature all the singles from this era, but the likes of Get Together and Jump seem a little wasted through exclusion here, simply because they were that perfect combination of dance floor and pop concert. To exclude Give It To Me from Hard Candy is, however, unforgivable. A major commercial hit, this collaboration with Pharrell Williams is quirky and addictive.

      ===The Ultimate Madonna?===

      You could have been forgiven for thinking that as something of a curtain call (with Warner Bros at least) that Celebration would have been a very special compilation, and in many ways it is. This album reflects an enormous breadth of styles and sounds for a pop artist and is a fitting legacy to such a high-selling artist. The track listing is relatively random and doesn't run in any kind of chronological order; nor does it sort itself into faster and slower tracks as other artist's compilations (such as George Michael) have done. As a listening experience, therefore, it's a little random, with very recent tracks sitting alongside much older material. Some users might find this a little off putting. Indeed, for some, there will be distinct eras of Madonna's music that they like/don't like and as such, arranged in this way, I can't help thinking that some users will flick backwards and forwards more frequently. This also means that you lose some of the 'story' of Madonna's music here. Whilst you appreciate the variety, you don't necessarily understand the progression from one album to the next here. This is almost certainly a compilation targeted at the 'general' fan of Madonna's music, as opposed to the die-hard devotee.

      This is, by no means, a complete retrospective either. There are upwards of thirty major single releases that are not featured here, some more notable than others and the record company continues to demonstrate a bias seen in previous collections. It seems ludicrous that there are tracks missing here that were amongst the singer's best selling material, including number one singles and tracks, which, for many listeners, will be amongst Madonna's most memorable. The cynic in me thinks that there's one more compilation waiting to be released here - a truly 'Ultimate' collection, which will feature every single song released commercially as a single.

      That aside, this is an amazing compilation of sounds and styles for casual and die-hard fans alike. It's hard to deny the singer's worthiness of so much adoration, and this compilation reminds us that, unlike many of her peers, she has always put her music foremost in whatever else she decides to do in her career. This is worthy (but imperfect) celebration indeed.

      The Full Track Listing

      Disc 1

      1. Hung Up
      2. Music
      3. Vogue
      4. 4 Minutes - Madonna & Justin Timberlake/Timbaland
      5. Holiday
      6. Everybody
      7. Like A Virgin
      8. Into The Groove
      9. Like A Prayer
      10. Ray Of Light
      11. Sorry
      12. Express Yourself
      13. Open Your Heart
      14. Borderline
      15. Secret
      16. Erotica
      17. Justify My Love
      18. Revolver - Madonna & Lil' Wayne

      Disc 2

      1. Dress You Up
      2. Material Girl
      3. La Isla Bonita
      4. Papa Don't Preach
      5. Lucky Star
      6. Burning Up
      7. Crazy For You
      8. Who's That Girl
      9. Frozen
      10. Miles Away
      11. Take A Bow
      12. Live To Tell
      13. Beautiful Stranger
      14. Hollywood
      15. Die Another Day
      16. Don't Tell Me
      17. Cherish
      18. Celebration

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      • More +
        24.10.2009 03:04
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        4/5 so close to being perfect...

        As a fan of over 20 years of Madonna I have been avidly waiting for this release for a few months and have been following the speculation on the fan sites about what was going to be included and what wasnt going to make it into the final tracklisting of what is essentially Madonnas Ultimate Greatest Hits release.

        With a back catalogue of over 60 single releases to choose from there was always going to be some unhappy fans. Warner Bros could have easily compiled a Definitive Madonna Collection over 3 discs and there are some glaring ommisions that really should have made it onto this collection. True Blue a UK number one single isnt here, yet Miles Away is included despite being one of her lowest placed chart singles. Theres no "Bad Girl", "Rain" or "Deeper and Deeper" infact the singles from the "Erotica" album are limited to just Erotica itself. Strange when you consider that every release from the True Blue album (apart from the title track) is included

        Pleased to see "Whos that Girl" included as this was missed off The Immaculate Collection and GHV2, not suprised to see no trace of "Causin a Commotion" or "The Look of Love" which both appeared on the WTG soundtrack and were released as singles in the UK, Madonna has not sung these songs live since the 1987 Whos that Girl Tour and these have probably been long forgotten by her and Warner Bros.

        There are no songs from Evita included and American Pie (another Uk number one) is missing aswell. "Ray of Light" releases are well represented as are "Bedtime Stories" from the 90's. However, to me the majority of the tracks are either 80's gems or her more recent releases. Do have to say that tracks sound a lot, lot better than they did on The Immaculate Collection, they are a lot clearer and much more sharper. Holiday and Express Yourself sound amazing and the first 5 tracks on Disc One : Hung Up/Music/Vogue/4 minutes and Holiday really gets you in the mood for more.

        Alot has been said and written about Madonna over the years and I think that her music has been overlooked in the past and people have concentrated on the controversies, her relationships and reinventions. Listen to these songs for what they really are - pop songs - , theyre not going to change the world, nor are they poetically beautiful, they are bubblegum pop which should get your feet tapping and you singing along to.

        For its ommisions I cant give it 5 stars, but it came very close to being a near perfect Celebration of hits and memories, hopefully we will get the Definitive version at some point which includes every release but until then this will do very nicely...

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        • More +
          21.10.2009 13:28
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          Solid but incomplete

          Having already released The Immaculate Collection, which has become one of the biggest selling Greatest Hits albums since its release, and GH2, a lazily titled half assed attempt to follow up Immaculate's success, its about time Madonna got round to releasing a more complete Hits collection. Aptly titled Celebration, given that the current single's title is that of the same, and nothing to do with the Kool And The Gang classic, this album is currently sitting high in the charts, and just in time for the all important crimbo market.

          Complaints about Madonna's often shaky voice are almost redundant as she has gone on to become the self professed Queen of Pop. Nobody is challenging her on that title, probably because she eats men for breakfast and even gave Courtney Love a dressing down live on television once. Scary stuff. Even if I could start to list the woman's faults, I'd be hard pressed to find fault with the music itself.

          The first thing to say about the album is that the tracks are all over the place. Coming in at 36 tracks, I think its fairly evident that this Celebration is missing at least a disc worth of material. Having already given us 2 patchy Greatest Hits album that missed off a few of her classics, this update should have been a more complete collection. However, it isn't, and that doesn't deviate from a brilliant array of pop music.

          Disc 1 opens with one of her biggest recent hits - Hung Up. Never has a sample of an Abba song been this much camp fun. Whilst Madonna thrusting her 45 year old hips in a leotard may not be everybody's cuppa tea, this infectious number more than made up for any bad taste from the Queen of bad taste.

          More massive hits follow with millenium Madonna buying in the beeps for Music and 4 Minutes (her duet with Justin Timberlake), sexing up for Justify My Love and Erotica. Where Disc 1 really shines though is on superb fashionista track Vogue, her crazy cover version of Ray Of Light and the offensively-video'd Like A Prayer. Recent albums were not a patch on her 90s material. Some 80s tracks are thrown in to pad the material out with Open Your Heart and Borderline making an appearance late on. Even Holiday, in all its tacky glory, sounds as good today as it did back then.

          Disc 2 goes further back, with only a few modern entries making the cut. A bit of a film theme going on with Who's That Girl, Beautiful Stranger and Die Another Day all getting preference over the brilliant but once again absent True Blue. While these are enjoyable tracks, they aren't Madonna's best work and belong best on the soundtrack to the film's they were attached to. Material Girl and Papa Dont Preach fly the flag for her 80s music though, and even the presence of La Isla Bonita make this a near joy to listen to. I'm also glad to see that Take A Bow, one of her finest ballads, makes the cut, and sits nicely alongside the enigmatic Frozen and the more recent Miles Away.

          There are only 2 new tracks on this album. The titular Celebration and a song called Revolver which has absolutely nothing to do with Guy Richie's film. Wouldn't it be a hoot though if it had been related. Neither tracks are remotely up to the standard of the rest of the material and the video for Celebration serves only to show that Madonna is still thrusting her way into middle age with little regard for taste or decency. She continues to shock her way into relevance, and creates headlines where there are none to be had, instead of enjoying a dignified silence now and again.

          That said, Madonna is an icon in music, and thats no easy feat to maintain for 30 years. She has to have made some kind of statement through her music in order to remain relevant. If at times she buys in the writing, that reflects in the lesser success of her music, her recent album Hard Candy selling a fraction of what Confessions On A Dancefloor sold a couple of years before. This album is a collection of her finest moments that only lacks due to absolute extent of her material.

          I'm not the greatest fan of Madonna, and find her often smutty and offensive. However, she is one of the best female artists of our generation and her live shows are held in high regard due to the quality of the music and the pure energy she oozes on stage. Therefore, despite its many absences, this latest and perhaps not-greatest hits album is just a mild update on her previous hits collections that should please the die-hards for a while and maybe even shift a few units to those who aren't so quick to run out and buy a Madonna album.

          Disc 1: Hung Up, Music, Vogue, 4 Minutes, Holiday, Everybody, Like A Virgin, Into The Groove, Like A Prayer, Ray Of Light, Sorry, Express Yourself, Open Your Heart, Borderline, Secret, Erotica, Justify My Love & Revolver

          Disc 2: Dress You Up, Material Girl, La Isla Bonita, Papa Dont Preach, Lucky Star, Burning Up, Crazy For You, Who's That Girl, Frozen, Miles Away, Take A Bow, Live To Tell, Beautiful Stranger, Hollywood, Die Another Day, Don't Tell Me, Cherish & Celebration

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        • Product Details

          Disc #1 Tracklisting
          1 Hung Up
          2 Music
          3 Vogue
          4 4 Minutes - Madonna & Justin Timberlake/Timbaland
          5 Holiday
          6 Everybody
          7 Like A Virgin
          8 Into The Groove
          9 Like A Prayer
          10 Ray Of Light
          11 Sorry
          12 Express Yourself
          13 Open Your Heart
          14 Borderline
          15 Secret
          16 Erotica
          17 Justify My Love
          18 Revolver - Madonna & Lil' Wayne

          Disc #2 Tracklisting
          1 Dress You Up
          2 Material Girl
          3 La Isla Bonita
          4 Papa Don't Preach
          5 Lucky Star
          6 Burning Up
          7 Crazy For You
          8 Who's That Girl
          9 Frozen
          10 Miles Away
          11 Take A Bow
          12 Live To Tell
          13 Beautiful Stranger
          14 Hollywood
          15 Die Another Day
          16 Don't Tell Me
          17 Cherish
          18 Celebration