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Madonna - Sticky and Sweet Tour

2010-04-27 15:00
Sticky & Sweet Tour

Is she upset at the monitor sound? Did she bust a string? Why is she swearing at everybody? And pegging an invisible man on stage?

It's mind-boggling stuff. At times it feels like you're watching the most artfully choreographed act of onanism in entertainment history, marked by a bizarrely self-aware narcissism that borders on the clearly insane. But it’s not quite all that. This isn't quite Lindsay Lohan jumping into another cactus, or Britney starting to speak with an English accent.

Na, we know that Madonna knows what grabs attention. We know (partly from Jonas Akerland's doccie from a few years ago) that Madge is very sincere in everything she does artistically – she really believes in her shit. But we also know that the bitch- excuse me (got caught up in the mood of the show there). We also know that the lady is a very, VERY shrewd businesswoman and an excellent performer, and employs only the best ideas-people in her support structure.

The concert is superbly staged, no two ways about it. And the capturing of it is way better than Jonas Akerlund’s effort on the "I'm Going to Tell You a Secret" concert DVD – even if his documentary was fascinating.

("F**K THE RAIN!" she screams – mental note to show director: Must stop Madge from ad-libbing to crowd.)

Madge knows how to dance. She's still got enough of the moves to look good next to her much younger and supremely gifted dance cast. She seems to do a fair job delivering the vocals, too – though, honestly, these days we can only take their word for it that vocals aren’t pre-decked or at least autotuned – processing is magic these days.

Esther knows how to "tune" into a new audience. The queen of reinvention is so called because she has defied both her age and industry expectations. He audience now is not the ageing demographic that other artists from the 80s have to play to on tours. Madonna attracts the ravers, clubbers, teens and twentysomethings who binge on smartdrugs-and-drinks and wear oddly anti-brand brands. She also attracts a healthy block of transvestites, if the crowd shot at 1:42:36 is to be taken at face value. But I digress...

"4 Minutes" with the video projection of Justin Timberlake is a definite highlight – anything with Justin in it is a highlight. Actually, those with Kanye West and Timbaland are pretty cool too. The music production is blisteringly hot – high energy dance beats and basslines are almost non-stop for two entire hours, and include some likeable reworkings of Madonna classics . When she does break the onslaught down a bit, it’s not for long, and you wonder how she keeps this oomph going at her age – seriously, it's very admirable.

The obvious Spanish-friendly middle bit of the show (this concert took place in Buenos Aires) may well be kitsch, but at least the rehashing of "Don’t Cry For Me Argentina" is charming. Her official version for "Evita" was abysmal at best, and Antonio Banderas sang in that movie!

The CD contains some of the remixed tracks you saw in the concert and one or two extras. But the audio disc in this case is really just an afterthought. Sticky & Sweet is obviously little more than contemporary dance-infused poptart, but you have to give kudos to a really well put-together concert and its film. Thumbs up – and I’m usually tough on the old bag. "F**k it."

MUTHAF**KA! Random opening word, isn't it? Well, that's what Madonna throws into the mix at the strangest points in this DVD concert, now jerking off her microphone, then yelling "Bitch!" at a cast member dressed as a faux-Madonna, then deep-French kissing another made up as herself from another era.

What to read next: Kalahari
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Moerige Boer 2010-04-22 01:14 PM
50 something or not, she' still hot! Lots of sex appeal. You go gran!

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