Wednesday, May 26, 2010


So I've just previewed the new Christina Aguilera album Bionic and although I really hate to be a Hater, I am hard-pressed to say that it left much of an impression on me. The collection which includes 15 tracks and three interludes is simply too long, without any coherence.  One minute it's hip-hop.  One minute it's acoustic.  One minute it's electro. I'm a strong supporter of having diverse influences, but this fourth studio effort is directionless.

Aguilera has opted for edge on this effort, going against her famous brand of melody and unapologetic big  stylized vocal flourishings.  I have always been of the mindset to never change a recipe that works; only improve upon it. The Aguilera I love most is her circa What a Girl Wants up to The Voice Within; she was Pop and unashamed of it.  This was an artist who could pack a stadium with her voice, sheer talent and girl next door personality.  The singer today boasts she "has nothing to prove" with an out-of-nowhere bravado which she attributes to having become a Mother.  And if this is what Parenthood does to you, I want no part of it and I'm sure hoards of her young female fans will be terrified.  Needless to say, it is not surprising to hear she has decided to cancel postpone her summer Bionic Tour.

She is compelled to embarass herself with overt sexuality in the earlier part of Bionic. On tracks like potential third single Woohoo, rapper Nicki Minaj proclaims: "You know you really wanna taste my... all the boys think of cake when they taste kiss my... allover my..".  It is a pity Aguilera doesn't use that gift of a voice to its fullest, wasting it on meaningless drivel like I Hate Boys.  It comes off insincere especially coming from a woman who claims to be happily married and perhaps somewhat insulting considering her huge male fan base.  

On earlier Press Releases, Aguilera claimed that Glam was a modern day Vogue (Madonna).  Not quiteLift Me Up is the one semi-saving grace with its live organic sound reminiscent of Stripped-era Aguilera, personable yet  listenable enough to be played on radio.  It's not enough to resuscitate this stillborn baby though.  Aguilera hypnotizes us with Zen-like tranquility on her collaborations with Australian singer-songwriter Sia, I Am, You Lost Me and All I Need. In other words, there is no trace of classic Aguilera to be found and ditto for any real viable singles off the album.

With a couple weeks still til its release, I hope with baited breath Bionic might be shelved by Sony Music, giving it an opportunity to be perfected.  As it is, it's not ready to be released.  Aguilera is amazing and deserves nothing but the best and to give us fans an album we can be proud to own and listen to.  Grade: C-



  2. I've not heard this - but I am REALLY looking forward to it - I really, really like the new single, and I hope (fingers crossed) that the album pleases me as much!

  3. Bionic is a good comeback, but leaves the best for last. See the track-by-track review here:

  4. This isn't a good review of the album. She explores so much in this album but the major theme is electro. The album is great and the extra tracks in the delux edition are the best. especially, bobblehead, desnudate, bionic, lift me up, monday morning.

  5. I'm a dedicated Christina fan but having just bought her album today I have to unfortunately agree you've hit the nail on the head. The Stripped-sounding songs are fantastic but other than Bionic and Not Myself tonight I REALLY don't enjoy the other dance-styled songs. A big let down for her unfortunately :(

  6. Thanks Megan. I'm glad you're with me. I think people need to differentiate that a poor review about the album, doesn't mean that I'm not on Team Christina anymore. I just don't find anything really inspiring on this album at all. I will still support her regardless.

  7. It is a pity Aguilera doesn't use that gift of a voice to its fullest, wasting it on meaningless drivel like I Hate Boys.


    I'd have to agree on that. Except for a few tracks, this isn't an album that should have been made for an artist whose voice is her instrument, an artist who can sing a capella and be compelling.

    But, saying that there is no vintage Xtina on the album is asinine. She's simply not what you want her to be. That's fine.

    I Am and You Lost Me are great tracks. Some Xtina fans appreciate subtlety and power vocals and power vocals doesn't necessarily mean she has to belt it out. I prefer her voice when she doesn't belt.

    Christina has range. I wish this album had more of it. I wish it illustrated what a great singer she is. Most of the tracks are disappointing. And lyrically (most of it) it is not impressive and there's an understatement.

  8. You didn't like Elastic Love? that track is one of the best from the album and it has a lot of gems...and i think you didn't listen to the deluxe songs:

    monday morning
    birds of prey (highly recomendable)
    stronger than ever
    lilttle dreamer (super cute and fun pop)

    listen to those, i agree the album is too long and it has some filler, but it's not a bad album at all

    P.S.liste to something's gotta hold on me from upcoming burlesque, another gem