Quantcast
Latest Stories

Album review: Christina Aguilera’s ‘Lotus’

‘The Voice’ judge returns with a vengeance

By

One of the reasons a lot of people—both fans and haters— have been waiting for Christina Aguilera’s latest album is because they want to find out how it would compare to the singer’s previous album, the commercially disappointing “Bionic.” While there were those who appreciated it for its attempts to be experimental, there were also those who criticized it for being a hodgepodge of songs that didn’t sound cohesive.

The album’s disappointing performance on the charts and low sales weren’t the only dips in Christina’s career. Around that same time, her movie “Burlesque” got mixed reviews. She and Jordan Bratman got divorced. She forgot the lyrics to the national anthem at the Super Bowl. And this mysterious liquid (which turned out to be fake tan spray) dripped down her legs during a performance at Etta James’ funeral.

It didn’t take long, however, before this fighter bounced back. She returned to the boob tube via the talent search “The Voice” and even scored a number one hit, her collaboration with Maroon 5 called “Moves Like Jagger.”

Now she has a new album, “Lotus,” which looks like her comeback album—her angry and semi-vengeful comeback album, to be exact. Several songs are addressed to her haters, and tackle subjects like revenge and moving on. For example, the empowering “Empty Words” (which sounds like something Kelly Clarkson would kill for) is perfect for that ex who wronged you or that frenemy that bullied you, thanks to lines like “You won’t break me” or “You can’t take me down.”

And then there is the interesting-sounding “Circles,” which starts with an intergalactic melody and then progresses to a headbang-inducing chorus. The tongue-in-cheek chorus says it all: “You can spin around in circles on my middle, middle finger.”

The list of tunes for haters doesn’t end there. “Best of Me” is a ballad that talks about not being a victim anymore. “Shut Up” is an upbeat ditty loaded with expletives, dedicated to someone self-absorbed. And then there is “Army of Me,” which can very well be “Fighter” 2.0.

One-night stands

The album thankfully has a bunch of fun, happy dance songs, too, most of which are about sex (after all, we’re talking about the singer who came up with the song “Dirrty”). Apart from the carrier single “Your Body,” which talks about one-night stands, there is also “Around the World” (“Imagine all the things we can do in one night”) and “Let There Be Love” (“Let there be love here in the dark”).

Some of the fast songs can remind you of songs by more contemporary artists such as Rihanna, which is bad for Christina. Someone established and vocally talented like her shouldn’t really be compared with or pitted against  younger pop stars. Then again, if these songs will appeal to people from this generation and score her a hit, that would be good for her.

“Lotus” is a reminder that Christina shines the brightest when she sings heart-wrenching ballads. Fortunately, the album has its share of such slow songs. There is “Sing For Me,” which, although a little giggle-inducing because of its lyrics, flaunts Christina’s signature growls, falsettos and runs. It’s the type that untalented people will want to use for singing contests (and unintentionally butcher, of course).

There is also “Just a Fool,” rumored to be the next single. This duet with her cojudge/coach on “The Voice,” Blake Shelton, is a pleasant surprise. Their voices and styles may be different but the end result is wonderful. This kinda country song might just make you start to like country music.

Possibly the best track in “Lotus” is her collaboration with Sia called “Blank Page.” Honest, vulnerable and blessed with a beautiful melody and equally beautiful lyrics (“I am a blank page waiting for you to bring me to life, I am a blank page waiting for life to start”), this masterpiece is a Grammy magnet.

“Lotus” is actually filled with a lot of strong, catchy songs (such as the inspiring “Light Up the Sky” and the super-fun “Red Hot Kinda Love”) that will most probably never be released as singles, no matter how good they are. As a whole, “Lotus” is more cohesive and commercial than “Bionic.”

It has a great mix of power ballads and fun up-tempo tunes. And while it’s obvious how some of the songs sound like they were created to make Christina more appealing to younger listeners, it’s good to know that despite this, the Christina that we love—you know, the one with that impressive voice, the one who does vocal gymnastics like her life depended on it—is the same Christina in “Lotus.”


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Album review , Christina Aguilera , “Lotus”

  • shauntwaz

    Lotus is such an AMAZING album!!!

  • http://twitter.com/senyoritamyx Mica

    I love Lotus! I just hope she releases the best songs.



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  2. Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  3. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  4. This is not just a farm
  5. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  6. Clams and garlic, softshell crab risotto–not your usual seafood fare for Holy Week
  7. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  8. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  9. Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  10. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  1. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  2. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  3. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  4. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  5. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  6. Marcos grandson to wed beautiful Rocha scion
  7. Ever heard of HydroBob?
  8. 90 percent of Filipino households don’t practice proper toilet hygiene, sanitation
  9. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week?
  10. Boots Anson-Roa to wed in Eddie Baddeo
  1. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  2. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  3. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  4. Manila in shock over model Helena Belmonte’s death
  5. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  6. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  7. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  8. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  9. Sen. Angara: I thought Pia Wurtzbach gave a good answer
  10. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?

News

  • Mixed feelings for Gabriel Garcia Marquez in hometown
  • Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies
  • Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’–report
  • Pakistan library named ‘bin Laden,’ as memory fades
  • US teacher fired over comment on black president
  • Sports

  • Duke’s Rodney Hood joining Jabari Parker in NBA draft
  • Phelps entered in 3 events at comeback meet
  • Boston prepares for huge wave of marathon visitors
  • Motivated LeBron James preps for postseason
  • Nadal ousted by Ferrer in Monte Carlo quarters
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Barbie doll has a problem
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • OFW from UAE tests negative for MERS-Cov–health chief
  • Multicultural flock marks Good Friday in San Francisco
  • Las Vegas ‘Pinoy Pride’ fest hails Filipino heritage
  • Marking Jesus’ journey on Good Friday
  • Filipina accomplice arrested for fake bills in Malaysia
    Marketplace