First Impression Review: Christina Aguilera’s Bionic
With each release Christina Aguilera has successfully done the unexpected: bubblegum pop, introduced a dirrty alter ego named Xtina, 1920′s -1940′s jazz, and now fearlessly reinventing her sound through Bionic (out June 8th.) Bionic showcases many new sides of Christina I never knew existed, namely a beautifully raw and flawed vocal range that is almost unrecognizable at times.
With tracks Bionic and Elastic Love Christina steps into M.I.A. and Santigold territory and pulls off two unexpectedly bombastic tracks. Glam, Prima Donna and Vanity show off her cocky and playful side, while the Sia tracks serve as the “heart and soul” of the record. Bionic is an eclectic, bold and inspired album that recklessly challenges mainstream pop radio.
Time will only tell how the album will be received but I will pre-maturely call the record another triumphant creative endeavor under Christina’s belt. Details about each track are below (sans interludes and bonus tracks.)
- Bionic: The album kicks off with this audio bitch-slap. Very Santigold + M.I.A sounding and I’m totally okay with that!
- Not Myself Tonight: First single from Bionic, great club song about losing your inhibitions.
- Woo Hoo: A catchy tongue-in-cheek hip hop track with Nicki Minaj.
- Elastic Love: Co-written with M.I.A. and Switch. Big spacey sound to be played out of big speakers with plenty of bass.
- Desnudate: There is so much going on in this track but it all somehow works. Definitely one of the album’s best surprises.
- Glam: Xtina and Tricky team up to give us Vogue for the year 2020, incredible driving and dizzying beat pushes the album into overdrive.
- Prima Donna: A bumping and hypnotic bassline, will definitely make it to my summer playlists.
- Half way through Bionic, the album slows down for Sex for Breakfast. Smooth and mellow R&B track reminiscent of Janet Jackson.
- Lift Me Up: This studio version is a bit different than the version performed at the Hope for Haiti telethon. Beautiful and raw vocals on this Linda Perry-produced track.
- All I Need: A sweet piano ballad dedicated to Christina’s son Max.
- I Am: Christina admits she’s everything but perfect in this great song out of the sessions with Sia Fuller.
- You Lost Me: Melodic piano track about infidelity featuring some really cool vocal arrangements.
- I Hate Boys: It’s got a stadium anthem feel but remains light, sassy and fun.
- My Girls: A funky girl power song featuring some of the most iconic women in music Peaches and Le Tigre.
- Vanity: Christina closes out Bionic with this hilarious dance track about embracing your vain side. Sure to be a staple at many drag shows.
You’ve got to hand it to Christina for going after what she wants no matter what the risk. Like Christina’s previous records Bionic is heavily rooted in concept, which can sometimes create a mess (notably here with the sequencing.) I like every song on this record for different reasons and the record as a whole for not taking itself too seriously. It’s definitely made the sonic boom statement that Christina is back!