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By now you've probably all heard the news. Britney Spears has a new single entitled "Mona Lisa" lifted from her upcoming sixth album, thought to be called "Original Doll" and released mid-2005. So what, you may be wondering, happened to her break to decorate her house and make little Britney babies?
This is what Britney does best - she plays us at our own game and, this time, she's well and truly got one over on us. The early versions of "Mona Lisa", first played on KIIS FM, sound very raw. They're a sound that, vocally at least, could've been lifted off her first album - whereas on the last release, "My Prerogative", the production was tighter than tight, the vocals breathy and the gasps and moans perfectly timed.
This could perhaps be because Britney wants to get there first. She doesn't want it to leak, she wants to take control for once - so she's thought, "Yeah, this is good; this will do to whet their appetites for now."
Many fans are well and truly shocked. Even we could not have anticipated something as media-savvy as this to just come out of nowhere. Now, a lot of people are probably upset that Britney 'lied' about taking a break. But, after the "Oops!" album promotion had died down, she said she was going to take a break. Six months later, "I'm A Slave 4 U" made its debut and Britney confessed she hadn't really taken a break - she'd spent the whole time writing and recording because she just couldn't stop herself.
She's been virtually non-stop for six years now, and probably more before she even released a record. Yet she just keeps going and going. This year has probably been the worst yet media-wise. She's been ripped to shreds by the newspapers, been in all the Worst Dressed categories available, been called God knows what by all the glossies - so maybe taking a break would be a good idea.
Fansites have gone mental for the track (the radio premiere is available for download on virtually every Britney site out there) and the news surrounding it, music forums have been gossiping and speculating like there's no tomorrow, yet her official site has no news. She's keeping us waiting.
Her best mate Madonna would be proud: These are the actions of a woman who loves what she does and doesn't care what anyone thinks about it. And to be honest, it's one of the many reasons why she has such a dedicated fanbase. As she sings in the new track, "She's so unpredictable."