Sunday, April 20, 2008

A Madonna Moment 20/04/08

"I'm gonna avoid the cliche"

Today we have Madonna's clip for "Die Another Day", which was the theme song to the James Bond flick of the same name. This song sat a bit awkwardly in the film because Die Another Day wasn't being "rebooted" then, yet the song a complete departure from what we usually get. And then they reversed it by having a dud yawn of a song when did rejigger the franchise in 2006 with Casino Royale. Bizarre.

Nevertheless, I actually think the song is brilliant - those beats are brutal - and that it's easily the best Bond theme since the days of Shirley Bassey. I also really like the video, and I think Madonna actually acts quite nicely in the fencing scenes (pay attention to her, really, she's great).

Naturally though the song gets tonnes of flak because it sounds like Madonna just shoehorned herself into the Bond franchise. But, really, it just proves that Madonna is still ahead of her time. By the time the franchise was getting a rebooting with the help of Daniel Craig, a film that could have used "Die Another Day"'s force of nature bravado, Madge had already moved on. Where were the people who criticised "Die Another Day" when Chris Cornell performed the track from "Casino Royale". Maybe he bored them to death...?

And I will forever maintain that this song has some of the most epic beats you'll ever hear. Those final 40 seconds without words should be enough to prove it, but "Die Another Day" was a product of Madonna's American Life partnership with Mirwais, her most criminally underrated period ever, and so even though the song was a huge hit worldwide it makes sense that people don't credit it.

Also, "Die Another Day" is a perfect example of how fucked up American music is. How can a song be the highest selling single in the country for ELEVEN WEEKS yet only reach #8 on the actual Billboard Hot 100? I understand how it happens, radio play radio play radio play, but if a song is consistently the highest selling song in the nation wouldn't that mean radio stations would play it? Ugh. America's charts are ridiculous.


Dame James Henry said...

"How can a song be the highest selling single in the country for ELEVEN WEEKS yet only reach #8 on the actual Billboard Hot 100?"

Reason #1124 why America sucks.

David said...

There was a conspiracy theory going around Icon that the airplay thing is something to do with a company called Clear-Channel, although i have no clue what kind of influence they're supposed to have with American Radio Stations o_O or what they would have against Madonna. But its a really interesting thing to point out, you have to wonder how much control do the American buying public have on their own charts, its crazy. Thank god things seem a little more sane in the UK.

I love Die Another Day, the strings get me everytime. :D

Dame James Henry said...

Clear Channel, I believe, owns most of the radio stations in America, but I have no idea what they have against The Madonna.