Madonna - American Life

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Postby Yoshie » Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:52 am

The title track makes the most sense as the lead single thematically, even though Hollywood would have been more appealing, radio friendly and also fit the album's theme and political undertones well. The controversy around the single may have backfired on Madonna and the rest of the era, but it's so fascinating to look back on and reevaluate that I have no problems with the title track having been the first release.
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Postby BlueScorpion » Sun Nov 05, 2017 1:43 pm

'American Life' is an attack to the American standards and ways of life. 'Hollywood' was is an open rebellion against radios. She knew very well what she was getting into and still decided to release this as singles. Queen of 'idgaf' :lol:
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Postby grooveboy » Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:18 pm

Both "American Life" and "Hollywood" were too much criticism for Americans to handle, especially in 2003.
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Postby MusicLover88 » Sun Nov 05, 2017 6:02 pm

grooveboy wrote:Both "American Life" and "Hollywood" were too much criticism for Americans to handle, especially in 2003.
That doesn't explain its underperformance worldwide though (apart from France where it smashed).
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Postby hellohello » Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:27 pm

BlueScorpion wrote:'American Life' is an attack to the American standards and ways of life. 'Hollywood' was is an open rebellion against radios. She knew very well what she was getting into and still decided to release this as singles. Queen of 'idgaf' :lol:
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Postby RayRay » Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:29 pm

American Life would never have worked as a second or third (or fourth) single.
That's probably why it was chosen to be the first.
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Postby Westen » Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:29 pm

MusicLover88 wrote:
grooveboy wrote:Both "American Life" and "Hollywood" were too much criticism for Americans to handle, especially in 2003.
That doesn't explain its underperformance worldwide though (apart from France where it smashed).
I never felt that underperforamnce, all 3 videos were on heavy rotation whole year. People still know and remember American Life and Hollywood here. I only found out that AL 'flopped' when i read it online years later...
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Postby MusicRecords » Mon Nov 06, 2017 3:58 am

Interesting album, messy era
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Postby Simon89 » Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:37 pm

This is one of my favourite Madonna's albums. I love it more than Like a prayer or Ray of light tbh... It is so emotional and acid at the same time, I really love this record :)
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Postby hellohello » Mon Nov 06, 2017 6:08 pm

I used to think that this was the worst Madonna albums up until MDNA was released but now I think that is one of her very best, if not the best. It's so consistent and personal in many ways. Mirwais did such a good job on this. 8-)
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Postby grooveboy » Mon Nov 06, 2017 6:40 pm



Che Guedonna telling it like it is *almost* 15 years ago! 8-)
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Postby MrLeonix » Mon Nov 06, 2017 6:41 pm

Honestly I feel like the only market where the album truly bombed was the US, selling 600K-700K in pure sales back in 2003 was really low, it was truly a bomb in America and none of the singles seemed to work there. Outside the US the album performed more moderately tho, it smashed in France and Italy and obtained several certifications around the world. Of course its performance was seen unfavourable as she was coming from two huge albums that were particularly massive in Europe ("Ray of light" and "Music"), "Ray of light" is approaching 2million units in UK alone while "Music" did over 1,5million there, so seeing "American Life" just hitting Platinum in UK was seen as "not enough" by the media and audiences alike.

I vividly remember this era, It wasn't well received by critics and the fact that it was her lowest selling album at the time was brought up a lot at least on the media all over The Americas. Nowdays the reception is more supportive and the album is seen retrospectively under a more appreciating light. And personally its among my favorite Madonna albums.

I'm also glad that "Die another day" somehow ended being part of the era, even though it wasn't originally released as part of this album's campaign the fact that it was eventually included on the album still makes it part of the "American Life" era a little bit and thats cool because the music video was stunning and the song was kind of a global smash.
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Postby BlueScorpion » Mon Nov 06, 2017 11:22 pm

The lead single is very misleading of the true content of this album as it's probably the weakest song in there.

To me this is FAR superior to "Ray of Light". Yes, there I've said, it's my opinion. :P
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Postby MrLeonix » Mon Nov 06, 2017 11:35 pm

BlueScorpion wrote:The lead single is very misleading of the true content of this album as it's probably the weakest song in there.

To me this is FAR superior to "Ray of Light". Yes, there I've said, it's my opinion. :P
Its ok. I even remember Madonna herself saying on interviews that it was her favorite record, how proud she was of it and that it was the one she enjoyed the most playing out of all of her albums.
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Postby BlueScorpion » Tue Nov 07, 2017 1:09 am

^^ When did she say that?? Because I will discard those allegations if they were made during the American Life release week. :lol:
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Postby MrLeonix » Tue Nov 07, 2017 2:11 am

BlueScorpion wrote:^^ When did she say that?? Because I will discard those allegations if they were made during the American Life release week. :lol:
She said it several times, and it wasn't only on release week, the album had been on sale already because by the time she made the comments she was even aware that it was the lowest selling album of her career (at that time). She always defended this album. She really believed in this album until the end.
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Postby JJeffs » Tue Nov 07, 2017 3:01 am

It's a stunning piece of work with oodles of both social and personal resonance. And musicality. She shouldn't have to defend the album - or any album. I feel like she was forced her into defending the AL video after being accused of it spreading an anti-American sentiment. I'm still miffed about that. What an exciting and vibrant video it was - saying what so many were thinking but didn't have the balls to say. The replacement video was such a drag.

I remember the promo stuff she did on MTV for this - looking back it's very clear how much she believed in it. Those kinds of performances were so rare for her. Really good though - in her beret and cute clothes. Loved it.
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Postby BlueScorpion » Tue Nov 07, 2017 10:48 am

I'm glad she stood for the album no matter what. That's what a true artist does.
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Postby grooveboy » Tue Nov 07, 2017 10:54 am

The proof she really loves American Life was her Tears Of A Clown concert where she performed Intervention, Easy Ride, X-Static Process and I'm So Stupid 8-)
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Postby Yoshie » Tue Nov 07, 2017 2:48 pm

I hope that she will perform Love Profusion one day. It's the only song from the album that she hasn't performed live.
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Postby innocenteyes » Tue Nov 07, 2017 3:10 pm

I'd love a 15th anniversary edition next year. But it won't happen lol.

Her best album IMO. Always brings me back to 2003.
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Postby BlueScorpion » Tue Nov 07, 2017 7:08 pm

Yoshie wrote:I hope that she will perform Love Profusion one day. It's the only song from the album that she hasn't performed live.
She might like it enough to bother doing a video and releasing it as single. Definitively NEEDS to be performed.
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Postby MrLeonix » Tue Nov 07, 2017 7:15 pm

I hated that the original "American Life" music video was shelved, the one we got on its place was really lame and I wish she had recorded a music video for "Nothing fails" too. :(

I still liked it that despite her "flopping" she still found a way to be out there and visible for everyone around the time between 2002-2004 ("Die another day", "American life", "Hollywood", "Love profusion", "Me against the music", plus iconic VMAs performance, great tour, lots of interviews and good remixes).

Its like the album didn't get the same success of her predecessors yet she was still everywhere.
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Postby Goldmoney » Tue Nov 07, 2017 9:54 pm

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Postby menime123 » Wed Nov 08, 2017 10:50 am

MrLeonix wrote:I hated that the original "American Life" music video was shelved, the one we got on its place was really lame and I wish she had recorded a music video for "Nothing fails" too. :(

I still liked it that despite her "flopping" she still found a way to be out there and visible for everyone around the time between 2002-2004 ("Die another day", "American life", "Hollywood", "Love profusion", "Me against the music", plus iconic VMAs performance, great tour, lots of interviews and good remixes).

Its like the album didn't get the same success of her predecessors yet she was still everywhere.
The AL video should only have been cancelled in the US imo. The UK wouldn’t have cared and the truth is it’s a bloody brilliant music video.

I believe Steven Klein was going to direct a video for Nothing Fails but plans got scrapped when Warner wanted LP as a single instead.

The remixes this era were superb. I stan so hard for that Thin White Duck version of Hollywood.
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