Review: “Medellín” — Madonna & Maluma

Madonna is known by many titles: Queen of Pop, Queen of Reinvention, Queen of Controversy, and the list goes on and on. Despite all these honorifics, her greatest asset is her consistency, even when it appears like she’s lost her way at the time. On “Medellín” — the lead single of the singer’s fourteenth album, Madame X, and her first since 2015 — she teams up with Latin pop idol Maluma (who was born in the city the song is named after) for a reggaetón ode to enjoying the life you’re living, complete with an addictive, rhythmic beat and airy synths recalling the ease of the posh lifestyle the duo are able to participate in.

The track begins with a call to cha cha, a nod to the Madame X album trailer in which she calls the titular character an instructor of the dance. Verse one belongs to Madonna, where she details intoxication and allowing herself to shed her responsibilities so “another [her] could now begin;” Maluma tackles the second, promising to care for the singer in her new state. Mashing up English and Spanish lyrics side-by-side, the chorus finds the two dueting in lush harmonies that recall Madonna’s Bedtime Stories. The duo don’t stray far from this formula for the rest of the song, but why attempt to fix what isn’t broken? At five minutes, “Medellín” unravels like a tropical trance, proving Madonna is still plenty capable of incorporating world sounds into her particular brand of pop music.

Rating: 4/5

A music business student with a passion for writing about music almost as intense as his desire to curate it.

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