×

Single Review: Madonna’s ‘Medellin’

While a song that begins with a cha-cha count-in and the lyric “I took a pill” sounds like it should be a dancefloor rager, it’s actually the unexpectedly low-key return of Madonna, who today dropped “Medellin,” the first single from her forthcoming album “Madame X.” A collaboration with Colombian singer Maluma — himself a native of the country’s mountain city — and her longtime collaborator Mirwais, the song combines a sing-song melody with a reggaeton-inflected, shuffing beat; she and Maluma pair trade off flirty verses in Spanish throughout the song.

While she pronounces the city’s name correctly (“meh-deh-zheen”), to her discredit she needlessly references the city’s violent past — it was the home base of drug cartel kingpin Pablo Escobar — in the lyrics: “We built a cartel just for love/ Venus was hovering above us.” Visitors to the city will know that it’s one of the last things residents want to talk about (unless they’re leading one of the tourist-baiting “Narcoterrorism tours”).

The song stretches on for nearly five minutes, stretching out toward the end with an extended instrumental bit designed for some low-key dancing. While produced by Mirwais, the song recalls Madonna’s previous Latin-inflected work with producer/songwriter Diplo.

The rest of the lyrics are more impressionist and romantic, and the city is only mentioned incidentally. “I took a pill and had a dream/ I went back to my seventeenth year, allowed myself to be naive, to be someone I’ve never been,” she sings on the song’s opening verses. “I took a sip and had a dream/ And I woke up in Medellín.”

And while the song may not be the dancefloor-filling that fans might be hoping for, it’s a sultry and promising introduction to Madonna’s latest era.

Single Review: Madonna’s ‘Medellin’

More Music

  • Lizzo Warner Chappell

    Lizzo Signs Publishing Admin Deal With Warner Chappell

    Lizzo has signed a global administration deal with Warner Chappell Music. The agreement covers her existing and future work, including the breakout hit “Juice” and follow-up “Truth Hurts” from debut album “Cuz I Love You.” Speaking to Variety of the success of “Truth Hurts,” Lizzo recently said: “I love being platinum. I worked so hard. [...]

  • Iggy Azalea

    Iggy Azalea on Album Delays, Twerk Pits, Trolling and Going 'More Tongue-in-Cheek'

    Iggy Azalea just unleashed her first album in five years, and the title speaks for itself. “In My Defense” sees the Australian pop star talking back, taking control of her masters and giving self-confidence to her fan base across the world. Azalea — real name: Amethyst Amelia Kelly — made a name for herself with [...]

  • Bruce Springsteen FYSEE Opening Night with

    Bruce Springsteen-Codirected 'Western Stars' Film Will Premiere in Toronto

    “Western Stars,” the film that Bruce Springsteen has made to accompany his recent album of the same name, will have its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, it was announced Tuesday. The feature is being listed as a co-directing project between Springsteen and his longtime filmic collaborator, Thom Zimny, who just picked up [...]

  • Pandora voice mode

    Pandora Launches Voice Mode for Everyone

    After first launching a limited beta earlier this year, Pandora opened up its mobile voice control to all of its iOS and Android users Tuesday. The new feature allows users to ask for songs, albums, playlists, stations, and even soundtracks for activities or times of day, with simple voice commands. Pandora’s voice mode is similar [...]

  • Terry Wakefield Exits Sony/ATV to Head

    Terry Wakefield Exits Sony/ATV to Head Up A&R at UMPG Nashville

    After a decades-long tenure at Sony/ATV Nashville, Terry Wakefield has followed another alumnus, Troy Tomlinson, across town to take a top position at Universal Music Publishing Group Nashville. Wakefield is senior VP of A&R at UMPG after having been senior VP of creative in his previous post. Personal loyalty to Tomlinson, UMPG Nashville’s recently named chairman/CEO, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content