The Weekly Music Thread Is No One’s Favorite

Let’s discuss any and all music here. Got a new artist who’s rocking your boat that you want to talk about? Post a video! Found out about that unearthed Coltrane album that has the jazz freak in you losing your mind? Lay it out for us! Have a theory about what your favorite band might do for their next album? Let’s hear it! Anything and everything music-related goes here.

This week’s discussion prompt: What’s an album or song that no one’s “favorite”…but it’s your favorite (or at least you like it)?

Bedtime Stories (1994) occupies a weird space in Madonna’s discography. Coming in the wake of the critical and commercial backlash she faced after releasing several sexually explicit projects in the previous two years (notably the Erotica album, the Sex book and her leading role in the erotic thriller Body of Evidence) Madonna collaborated with Dallas Austin, Babyface, Dave Hall and Nellee Hooper to make a toned-down, less overtly sexual album. And while it did receive generally positive reviews and ultimately outsold her previous album Erotica, a lot of long-time or hardcore Madonna fans have said they don’t like her “persona” during this period and it rarely gets cited as one of her best. However, I think it’s solid collection of songs, and the largely pop- and R&B-based production works really well.

After Bedtime Stories, it would be four years before Madonna would release her next studio album, as she focused on starring in and recording songs for the musical film Evita, coming back in 1998 with the William Orbit-produced, electronica-infused Ray of Light, which received universal acclaim and is widely considered her best work.

Ray of Light was followed by Music in 2000, which maintained the electronica-influenced direction of her previous album but was ultimately much more experimental, dabbling in numerous genres along the way. While like its predecessor the album was also a critical and commercial success, it rarely seems to get cited as anyone’s favorite Madonna album. But it’s MY favorite Madonna album!1 It’s eclectic, occasionally weird, and once again I think it’s a very strong collection of songs bolstered by some amazing production work courtesy of Mirwais Ahmadzaï, as well as Orbit, Guy Sigsworth, and Mark “Spike” Stent.

As always, any and all music-related posts are welcome. Have fun, and rock out with yr guac out!