Christina Aguilera – Bionic

September 17, 2010 at 10:27 PM | Posted in Christina Aguilera | Leave a comment

ALBUM REVIEW
Christina Aguilera – Bionic

1. Bionic
2. Not Myself Tonight
3. Woohoo (feat. Nicki Minaj)
4. Elastic Love
5. Desnudate
6. Love And Glamour (Intro)
7. Glam
8. Prima Donna
9. Morning Dessert (Intro)
10. Sex For Breakfast
11. Lift Me Up
12. My Heart (Intro)
13. All I Need
14. I Am
15. You Lost Me
16. I Hate Boys
17. All My Girls (feat. Peaches)
18. Vanity

♦ ♦ ♦

Bionic is the fourth album by American singer Christina Aguilera, released on June 4, 2010, four years after her previous album Back To Basics (2006). In the United States it debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 albums chart with sales of 110,000 copies, becoming her lowest charting album on the chart.

And BOOM! There she comes with a big bang with Bionic, an R&B/electro track heavily influenced by bombastic percussion and blowing synths. Christina’s voice is heavily altered with a vocoder, mostly in the introduction of the song. The content of the song is nothing special, it’s the music that counts. It’s not bad, not good, but still it’s hot already.

Not Myself Tonight sound ever hotter! It’s faster than Bionic and features more tribal house drums. I didn’t expect this at all, but I liked her spoken introduction when she whispers “You wanna get crazy? ‘Cause I don’t give a AAAWH‘ That scream is so infectuous, you really feel like wanting to get up on that dancefloor! Christina hits a lot of high notes on this song, and she does it with the same flair as always. Strangely enough… I love it.

The next track kinda takes me back to the good old Stripped days with some Electrohop. Woohoo (feat. Nicki Minaj) might have some dirty lyrics (like… it’s about oral sex), but the music, and especially the chorus, is very catchy, and I like the fact Christina teamed up with rapper Nicki Minaj, who also released a few songs I really liked. Her rap is a bit humoristic here because she’s doing her signature funny voices again, but the track as a whole really got me going (if I don’t focus on the lyrics too much).

A great fun fact is that Mathangi Arulpragasam, commonly known as M.I.A., was one of the writers of Elastic Love. Again, heavy synths and vocoder effects are in the air, mixed with a lot of electronica stuff. This song really isn’t all that special, and to me only the hook sounds kinda infectuous. The rest is very plain and even a bit repetitive. Still, it’s not a bad track considering Christina’s vocals in the verses.

Desnudate, then, has more ‘fiyaah’ to it than Elastic Love. It reminds me a lot of all those danceclub songs because of the beat on every count and a lot of heavy synthesizers. The fact that even some Spanish lyrics are included (the title is Spanish as well) is very funny, and so are the brassy effects. The track has got a bit of an exotic spice, especially because a Spanish guitar drops in during the bridge. One of the better songs on this album.

Fashion is a lifestyle, it’s a choice, it’s a freedom of expression. You have to live it, you have to love it, you have to believe it. Life’s all about Love And Glamour.”

Christina dispenses fashion tips (“Don’t let the clothes wear you!”) while recycling Madonna’s Vogue on Glam, and it’s really what it sounds like: glamorous electropop. This track is almost like Elastic Love. True, this has some nice music and vocals, but still it’s not a standout track. Only the bridge features something different with fast handclaps and a little dancehall effect.

It’s clear Tricky Stewart pulled of some tricks with Prima Donna. Between all the electropop, Christina placed an R&B/Hip-Hop track with heavy synths. The beat pumps right through your speakers with heavy basslines, and a male voice shouts ‘work your body‘ all the time. How much hotness do you want?! I like it when Christina sings R&B, it suits her voice so much better! So this track is wonderfully done and so full of spice!

Morning Dessert (Intro) is a spoken interlude based on a soft R&B beat, strings and layered vocals by Christina in the background. It’s very pretty, actually a bit too short. It should’ve been about 2:45, like ‘Welcome’ on Back To Basics: not too short, not too long. Very good intro for the next track.

The sweet R&B ballad beat flows right on into Sex For Breakfast, a slowtempo song with a nice percussion arrangement and bass line. After all the electropop stuff, I can really dig this lighter type of music with great and yet laid back vocals by X-tina. Her vocals sound so soothing when layered while she adlibs her lyrics. I should say this is not a standout track, but why should I? It’s nice to relax a bit after all those clubbing songs.

I guess we’ve come to the ballad section of the album, because Lift Me Up is a very nice pop ballad with dominant percussion, beautiful strings and even a piano (mostly heard during the first verse). It’s simple, yet it really captures me because X-tina displays some lovely and strong vocals on this track. One of the best songs on this album, to say the least.

My Heart (Intro) is sooooo cute! Christina’s husband Jordan Bratman and her son Max are heard on this track, and Max’s voice is the cutest I’ve ever heard, especially when he says ‘Mammaaaa…‘. I went like ‘aaaaaaaw!!’ the whole time! <333

I’d like to give a standing ovation to the songwriters of All I Need. This track has such a heartfelt and wonderful melody! This could easily be one of the best tracks I’ve ever listened to because of the melody! Again, Christina learned to not overdo her ballads vocally, so here she kept everything simple, yet not plain at all. Her vocals are layered to give that extra lovely effect to the song, and the piano and bells in this track are adorable.

I Am opens with some strings and bass, and is another ballad. This time, the lyrics really captured my attention because everyone can relate to those kinds of ‘take me or leave me’ songs. In the second verse, the percussion becomes a bit more dominant, but just enough. The chorus could’ve been a little more interesting, but the verses and the bridge are certainly top notch.

The last ballad on this album is You Lost Me, and one of the prettiest as well. The melody is again very beautifully done, Christina’s vocals show us what a great vocal artist she is, and all I can think of is that this theatrical ballad really deserved to be released as the second official single. The track is so heartfelt it almost makes me cry at points Christina belts out her high notes…

Back to the electropop with I Hate Boys, the shortest track on this album that isn’t an intro. It’s a bit cliché, but when Christina shouts out her lyrics in the bridge, it yet proves to be something very different after all. It’s just like all the other tracks on the first half of this album when it comes to the music.

Christina teamed up with Peaches for All My Girls, and by now, even though I’ve heard a lot of ballads in the meantime, I’m a bit on the fence with these kind of songs. True, Peaches’ raps in the bridge wake me up for just a sec, but after 16 songs I’m starting to get a little bit tired of this genre. If this was just a single track I was listening to, it would’ve been a great achievement for those two girls.

Oh. My. Gosh… Christina girl… What were you think with Vanity? ‘I’m not cocky, I just loooove myself, BITCH‘ and ‘Mirror mirror on the wall, who’s the flyest bitch of them all, never mind I am… That bitch is so f*cking pretty!‘ GIRL! The lyrics of this song just freak me out, I literally HATE these kind of over-confidence tracks… Better leave this off your albums next time, woman.

So this was the third time I really took my time to listen to this album, and I have to admit I have a different opinion every single time. The first time, when I was cleaning my room and had this album playing, I loved it to death. The second time, it freaked me out during doing my homework, so I suddenly started to hate it. This time, I LIKE it, not loving it, not hating it. I’m inbetween, you know? Some of the electropop/uptempo tracks were decent or even great, some were a little ‘blegh’, could’ve been more, and one (Vanity ofcourse) can never EVER be spoken about when I’m around. Hated it, really. The ballads then… Need I say more? It just PROVES Christina should’ve never gone this far with her image change 4.0. How about going back to a mixture between the ‘Christina Aguilera’ album era and Stripped? What an awesome album that would be for… 2013? The ballads section was definitly the very best part of this album by far. So… I have mixed feelings about this album. It was decent, could’ve been better. And shorter… *yawns*

Favorite tracks: Woohoo (feat. Nicki Minaj) | Prima Donna | Sex For Breakfast | Lift Me Up | All I Need | I Am | You Lost Me

OVERALL RATING

3½ stars

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