Monday, April 18, 2011

April 18, 2011 - F is for Femme and Fatale

My goal for Saturday, since it was the first day of my 10-day break, was to write two posts. I had already done “E is for Express Yourself” earlier and as I went about the day’s errands I tried thinking of an “F” word. Hmm, what words begin with the letter “F”? Of course, that “F-word”! But nah, I think I’m going to save that one for Y!CN, but another one came to mind when I was in the mall earlier…actually it was two.

Well I never got around to finishing that post and now I’m two days further behind. So I’m gonna start where I left off:

Nowadays whenever I go shopping I always bring my iPod with me. I figure it’s always better to hear music I like than some of the inane conversations going on around me. I went into my local mall today to do a little shopping for a new frock for the night and I brought my iPod with me. There I was, walking from Express Men to American Eagle when it hit me. I was listening to Britney Spears’ “Femme Fatale” and suddenly realized I had my “F-word(s).” Since Y!CN doesn’t pay for reviews of albums after they’ve come out, I just figured I’d take this opportunity to talk about it here.

F is for Femme Fatale

I said the other day that I wasn’t the biggest Britney fan and I’m not. I don’t think she’s got that good of a voice and she’s probably the least talented of the bunch of pop divas out there today. But she is talented. Britney’s got a knack for creating made-for-the-dance-floor tunes that really rock, and “Femme Fatale” is a dance party all unto itself. Here’s my scoop on the album:

The album starts off with Britney’s second single, ‘Till the World Ends.’ I read somewhere that this was her favorite track on the album and so far it’s mine, too! It has a great “whoah, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh” hook and the beat is Euro club at its best. ‘Hold it Against Me’ was the first single and I think it did as good as it did only because it was the lead single and Britney fans were anticipating it like mad. Not that it’s a bad song, but to me there are a lot better ones on “Femme Fatale.”

The rest of the album is Britney doing what she does best, playing the part of sultry vixen set to some eye-popping beats. I’ve got several favorites on the album, including ‘I Wanna Go,’ with its catchy whistling hook, the ultra-clubby ‘Trouble for Me,’ ‘Gasoline,’ and ‘Up n’ Down,’ and the fast and funky ‘Don’t Keep Me Waiting.’ ‘How I Roll’ is another catchy, call and back tune, with electronic reverbs echoing throughout, though this it’s got some seriously silly lyrics:

I wanna go downtown where my posse’s at
Cause I got nine lives like a kitty cat

Big Fat Bass,’ Brit’s collaboration with Black Eyed Peas’, disappoints me a bit. As the title would suggest, there’s a lot of bass to the song, but it’s the lyrics that I think are a bit simplistic and well, just plain stupid:

I can be your treble baby
You could be my bass

I don’t hate the song, but it’s not my favorite either.

The rest of the album is a great listen. There are two mid-tempo tunes, both of which are very good. ‘Criminal’ is a song about a physical relationship with someone who’s on the wrong side of the law and its melodic and memorable. ‘He About to Lose Me’ is one of my personal favorites on “Femme Fatale.” The strumming music and the tender lyrics make this one kind of sad, and it’s a nice listen.

‘(Drop Dead) Beautiful’ is Britney at her best, with a vixenish hook that makes you wanna move. The funky ‘Trouble for Me’ is a nice pop tune and the chorus of ‘Trip to Your Heart’ reminds me a lot of Shakira’s ‘She-Wolf.’ The choruses have virtually the same melody. ‘Selfish’ rounds out the Euro-club songs and is another good one. My least favorite songs on the album include ‘Inside Out’ and ‘Seal it With a Kiss,’ though they’re not terrible.

All in all, Britney’s got a winner with “Femme Fatale.” If you already like her, it’s easy to get past all of the electronic modifications to her voice and just appreciate it for what it is: one long, electronic dance party. If you’re not a fan, then you probably won’t. For a Britney Spears album, this one gets five stars! Here's 'Till the World Ends':

Femme Fatale (Deluxe Version) - Britney Spears

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