Who is Britney Spears? She began as an innocent schoolgirl; in the second and third albums she grew up; then suddenly she transformed into a dominatrix, like most long-term pop stars who want to boost their sales. Now that image seems old, what part of the personality spectrum will she visit next?
Femme Fatale is a refreshing change from the last albums, which (the lead songs excepted) were mostly production and short on melody. We’re still in the dominatrix era, although teetering on the edge. Perhaps her managers feel she should start growing out of it. This one has a plenty of production again, but we get more of a chance to hear her distinctive (though not unpleasant) vocals. It isn’t her best album – even the better songs aren’t hits. It’s more a collection of songs for an aerobics class than for a 2011 hits compilation, although you know she’ll be included.
You would think that for someone on the pop podium, she’d be able to get hold of some genuine chart-toppers. I like this album though. It’s perfect for your MP3 when out jogging, and, if you don’t fancy that, you can try it in a dance fitness workout in the living room. VP
Britney Spears Femme Fatale album cover copyright Jive Records