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> Blackout: Universally Praised On 10th Anniversary, I’m so nice I went and posted them for you. Haters pay attention.
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Tyler
post Nov 1 2017, 02:11 AM
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Rolling Stone:*Britney Spears' 'Blackout': A Salute to Her Misunderstood Punk Masterpiece




"Nobody has ever been able to explain how Blackout happened – how a star in mid-meltdown managed to document it all so vividly"

Happy tenth birthday to Blackout, which is not only the greatest of all Britney Spears albums, but one of the most innovative and influential pop albums of the past decade. It's where America's sweetheart changed her name to Mrs. Oh My God That Britney's Shameless and got real, real dark on us. On Tuesday, October 30th, 2007, when the world was trying to write her off as a joke – not for the first time, not for the last – Brit dropped music way too weird for the radio, all alien and distorted, warping her Southern drawl into a surly electro-punk sneer. Within a couple of years, everybody was trying to sound like this. It's Britney, bitch.

She was a pop princess. Now she's in and out of hospitals, rehab, and court. How Britney lost it all
Blackout is an avant-disco concept album about getting famous, not giving a ****, getting divorced, not giving a ****, getting publicly mocked and despised and humiliated. It's an album about dancing on tables in a cloud of glitter and Cheeto dust. But mostly it's an album about not giving a ****, which is why it sounds perfect for grim times like these. Especially since America in 2017 is less sane or stable than Britney was in 2007. If our girl could emerge from the wreckage with an album like Blackout, there's hope for us all.

Pop artists keep building whole careers on the Blackout sound – just to pick the most stellar example, Selena Gomez's "Bad Liar" is the best Britney song of 2017, just as "Hands To Myself" and "Slow Down" were the best of 2015 and 2013 respectively.

"Piece of Me" is the peak of the album – and maybe Britney's career – produced by the Swedish duo Bloodshy & Avant, who also did "Radar," "Toy Soldier" and "Freakshow," not to mention the 2003 classic "Toxic." Miss American Dream Since She Was 17 lists all the ways the TRL dream turned into her nightmare, so she punishes America by making us live it out with her. "You wanna piece of me?" sounds like she's either pimping herself out or taunting you into a bar brawl. Either way, it'll cost you. No wonder Taylor Swift quotes this song ("another day, another drama") in "Look What You Made Me Do." "Piece of Me" remains the template for every pop girl who decides it's time to wreak her evil vengeance on a world that made the fatal mistake of pissing her off. Are you sure you want a piece of Britney? After ten years, Blackout still makes that sound like a thrillingly dangerous question.

http://www.rollingstone.com//music/news/ro...erpiece-w510038[/QUOTE]


In Touch Weekly: "Happy Birthday, ‘Blackout’! An Ode to Britney Spears’ Most Iconic Album Ever"




Today marks the 10-year anniversary of Britney Spears’ fifth studio album, Blackout. The iconic LP, which was released in the midst of the superstar’s highly publicized breakdown of 2007, was praised by fans and music critics alike for its bold and innovative sound. It’s truly remarkable that Britney was able to create a timeless collection of edgy, electro-pop bangers, as she reportedly battled addiction and an undisclosed mental illness amid a painful custody war with ex-husband Kevin Federline.

Just eight months before Britney blessed our ears with Blackout, she made the world collectively gasp when she shaved her head during a fateful trip to at Esther’s Haircutting Studio in Tarzana, CA, on Feb. 17, 2007. In the weeks that followed, the troubled pop princess, then 25, checked into and out of rehab and infamously attacked a paparazzo’s car with an umbrella. Her worrisome antics were heavily documented by the media for months on end — a rather distressing time for the Britney Army.

Though the In the Zone era signaled a slight departure from Britney’s sweet-but-sexy image, Blackout confirmed that she was far from overprotected, definitely not a girl, and finally her own woman…even if her freedom had cost her. For the first (and only) time, Britney — who had parted ways with her longtime manager, Larry Rudolph — served as the executive producer on an album. She may have fallen off course during those dark days, but Britney was, at last, steering her own ship. And, astonishingly, the outcome was spectacular.

Despite her shaky performance of Blackout’s lead single, “Gimme More,” at the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards, it was impossible to deny that the track itself was brilliant. The song’s opening line, “It’s Britney, b---h,” was a defiant declaration that Britney Spears, who the world first fell in love with in a schoolgirl skirt at 17, was much more complex than anyone had thought. In fact, she wasn’t just a sex symbol or a money-making commodity; she was a human being.


Attitude: Why Britney Spears will always be defined by "Blackout"




Cast your mind back to 2007. It was one of the most memorable years in pop culture history, and one that is constantly referenced a decade later.

There were faded jeans and flip phones, Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan were behind bars, and the world’s most famous woman tragically fell into a downward spiral that would go on to change tabloid culture forever.

Despite the turmoil her life was in, Britney somehow managed to record and release her most critically acclaimed album, which has since gone on to become one of the most iconic pop records ever made, and one that arguably changed the direction of the pop landscape.

Released ten years ago today on October 25th 2007, Blackout saw the star going down a darker, electronic route that fans previously hadn’t heard. Britney was back, she was brunette and she was determined to show that she was no longer the all-American girl next door, but instead a sexually liberated woman who knew exactly what she wanted.

This was an album about getting wasted, going to the club and taking boys home. While this was hardly something new from a pop star, it was the first time it felt like a true representation of the artist. Despite appearing to be anything but on the surface, Blackout truly was the most personal album Britney could have released.

She was living and breathing the lyrics she was singing, and we knew that because the proof was plastered over the front pages of every newspaper in the world falling out of a club on a daily basis.

Blackout marked the moment Britney, for far too fleeting of a moment, took complete and utter control of her career. In fact, it still stands as the only album she’s credited as an executive producer.

While 2007 marked the fall of the world’s most famous teen icon, it also signified the rise of a superstar we could all relate to. Britney was no longer just a blonde Barbie with perfect abs that all the guys wanted. The image of a woman the media had built into this almost unattainable goddess was crumbling in front of the world’s eyes, and in doing so, it was revealing a side to the pop icon that humanised and endeared her to the public.

http://attitude.co.uk/why-britney-spears-w...ed-by-blackout/


Billboard: "Britney Spears' 'Blackout' Turns 10: How Her Worst Year Gave Us Her Best Album"



In February 2007, Britney Spears walked into a California beauty salon and shaved her head in full view of the snapping paparazzi. After the iconic public meltdown, she checked into a rehab facility. In July 2007, she finalized her divorce from her husband of less than three years, dancer Kevin Federline. In September 2007, she ambled through an infamously terrible performance of a new single, “Gimme More,” at the MTV Video Music Awards. Not long after, she temporarily lost custody of her children.

And yet on Oct. 25, 2007, she released the best and most influential album of her career, Blackout.

And in “Piece of Me,” producers Bloodshy & Avant, with cowriter Klas Ahlund, took a chance by giving Spears a kiss-off track that broke the rule about mentioning her personal life (“I’m Miss American Dream, since I was 17"). Spears and her team went with it. The resulting album gave us a refracted view of Spears’ life, a group art project about what other people thought being Britney Spears was like. And given that Spears herself had been decimated by her own media narrative, this seemed like the perfect artistic expression of Spears at the time.

Now, as Blackout turns 10, it stands as a masterpiece of her extraordinarily resilient career, a perfect piece of pop art of its time as well as a trend-setting record that brought EDM elements into the mainstream, where they still permeate today. In 2012, it became her sole album to join the archives of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

At the time Blackout dropped, it sounded like it came from the future—a dystopian and warped future, but nevertheless interesting. Pop radio had remained steeped in the pop-R&B influences that had also driven Spears’ music until then: The top songs of the year were Beyoncé’s “Irreplaceable” and Rihanna’s “Umbrella,” both beautifully sung grooves. Blackout offered crunchy beats that sounded like they were coming from a broken computer, classic dubstep wobbler effects, and Spears’ voice intentionally distorted in every way possible. Whether Spears could sing didn’t matter; her producers played her like an instrument.

http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/...out-anniversary

Idolator: "Britney Spears’ Seminal ‘Blackout’ Turns 10: Backtracking"




“It’s Britney, bitch.” With those three words, Britney Spears introduced “Gimme More” and kickstarted what would become her most iconic era. Released 10 years ago today (October 25), Blackout cemented the hitmaker’s status as a living legend and helped shape the sound of pop music for the following decade.

Ten years later, Blackout remains one of the most defining pop releases in the new millennium. Although it was her first album to miss the top spot on the Billboard 200 Albums chart, it has lived on in infamy and has appeared near the top of “best of” lists for the last 10 years.

Ten years later, Blackout remains one of the most defining pop releases in the new millennium. Although it was her first album to miss the top spot on the Billboard 200 Albums chart, it has lived on in infamy and has appeared near the top of “best of” lists for the last 10 years.

Recently, Britney has teased fans to a frenzy by promising to release another record of a similar quality. She came close with 2016’s Glory, the deluxe edition of which closed out with a track called “Coupure Electrique.” Roughly translated from French, it means blackout. Hopefully her forthcoming album, coming as she prepares to celebrate 20 years in the industry, recaptures even more of the frenetic energy of her career-defining album.

http://www.idolator.com/7670154/britney-sp...acking?view-all

E! News: "Blackout Turns 10: A Look Back at Britney Spears' Return From the Brink"




Released ten years ago today, Blackout was almost overshadowed by a period in the pop star's life that most fans can still only talk about in hushed tones. While her doomed marriage was finally ending and she was shaving off all her hair in public, she would also drop her first album in three years. With its explicit commentary on her fame (a first in her career) and a grimier sound than she'd ever embraced before, Blackout delivered some of the singer's most iconic songs in her discography. It may have been her first studio album not to debut at No. 1, but it would go on to shape the sound of pop music in ways you're still hearing on the radio, whether you realize it or not.

"My first meeting with her was before a lot of the craziness happened. It was in Vegas, I believe, the first time we wrote and we did the record 'Break the Ice,'" Hills tells E! News. "But the first time, she was just open-minded about whatever or however the sessions were going to go. There was no set direction or anything. She was just very free-spirited. 'This sounds cool, that sounds cool. Let's go with it.' Very light-hearted and happy and fun."

"I think Blackout introduced underground electropop to the mainstream," Miller adds. "It pushed singers to reach new heights and producers to get more creative; the vocal editing was a perfect pair with the eerie synths and heavy drums on nearly every track. Britney wanted to record an album that veered away from the narrative of her personal life, yet it reflected it anyhow. She proved her power as an executive producer."

"I remember Teresa, the A&R at the time, she just was like, ‘I'm going to tell you, your life is about to change.' I was like, ‘Um, OK.' I just came off of 'SexyBack' and 'My Love' and those records, so I'm like, ‘Can it get any bigger than that?' And it did. It definitely did. I feel like regardless of everything I've done, the Britney Blackout album is the one people most relate me to."

As for Spears' legacy herself, Miller asserts, "Britney is the first star to reach such stratospheric levels of superstardom in the digital age, to the point where she nearly never drifted back. Despite that unprecedented and unchartered fame, Britney triumphed. If there's anything I've learned about the princess of pop through the years, it's to expect the unexpected."
"She's solidified as who she is, period. There's no Taylor Swift without Britney. A lot of these pop artists just would not be here without Britney Spears," Hills adds. "Regardless of what she's done and what she's doing now…She's forever Britney Spears."

http://www.eonline.com/news/889189/blackou...-from-the-brink

Bustle: "Britney Spears' 'Blackout' Is A Scary Reminder Of What Happens When Women Are Seen & Not Heard"




Released during a chaotic year that cemented the singers transformation from America's sweetheart to tabloid curiosity, responses to Britney Spears' Blackout were mostly positive, if steeped in caustic judgment. Impressed reviewers repeatedly commended the playfulness of Blackout, it's striking production and the "bright, brash electropop" of its sound, but did so under the duress of acknowledging the tumult of Spears' personal life. Some critics began their reviews by dragging Spears' various tabloid sins out like criminals in a police line-up, as though attempting to identify the album's focus, or perceived lack thereof. "Two marriages, one annulment, multiple rehab stints, a concussed live-television debacle, a failed custody battle," one Blender review of Blackout said, "and various misadventures in baby-dropping, head-shaving and crotch-exposing."

Blackout had deeper and darker connotations to it that only some critics were savvy enough to hear. And isn't that sort of the point? The blackout expressed in the album's title had little to do with Spears' alleged partying or in silencing tabloid commentary about her, and more to do with a culture that was so obsessed with watching her that they'd forgotten how to hear her.

With Blackout, Spears was pulling the blinds shut on herself as an object of voyeurism, and was instead begging that we again took notice of her as a musician. And if you listened close enough, the end result was just as disconcerting and desperately compelling as it had all rights to be.

https://www.bustle.com/p/britney-spears-bla...t-heard-2967568

Nosey: Ten Years On, ‘Blackout’ Is Britney Spears’ Greatest Album to Date"



2007 was many things for Britney Spears: dramatic, traumatic, iconic. A divorce from Kevin Federline and an exhausting custody battle over their two kids, a shotgun Vegas wedding to childhood friend Jason Alexander and a general struggle to maintain agency over her own life inevitably culminated in a heavily publicized breakdown. It was described at the time as "the most public downfall of any star in history," crystalized in a widely panned VMAs performance in which Britney half-assed it through the debut of "Gimme More" in the most perfectly articulated statement of IDGAF up to that point. It also took place in the foreground while Spears—somehow—worked on her fifth and most foreboding album Blackout. The result is—SOMEHOW—one of her greatest bodies of work to date.

Released on October 25, 2007, Blackout is the first album to credit Britney as the executive producer—which makes sense, given that it has Britney all over it. Lyrically revolving around womanhood, ravenous media voyeurism, being horny and getting absolutely battered, it's a whirlwind of nihilism dressed up as the best night of your life. Every track sounds like reveling in an objectively unhealthy decision and having a lot of fun while doing it, like the smirking face emoji made audible. It's designed for sticky floors, bumming a cigarette off a stranger and doing a pick-me-up shot at 2AM before heading back onto the dancefloor with renewed vigor. It's taking downers after uppers after downers, or going home with a member of the bar staff. It buzzes with the jittery energy of someone chasing a high to avoid a problem, relentlessly consuming in retaliation to being relentlessly consumed. Essentially: Blackout is an album that disappears into its own darkness, but what you find when you're there is one shameless, endless party.

Retrospectively, Blackout has been hailed as one of the most influential pop albums of its time, impacting the sonics of pop as it would continue to evolve through Lady Gaga and Kesha. In honour of its tenth birthday, we have rounded up a cast of Britney scholars to revisit Blackout track-by-track (bonus ones and all)—casting our eyes back over an album that not only stands as a definitive turning point for Britney Spears as a cultural icon, but as an emblem of the manic excess and crushing downfall of 00s celebrity culture as a whole.

https://noisey.vice.com/en_us/article/a37vz...ear-anniversary

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Tyler
post Nov 1 2017, 02:20 AM
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THE OCC: Britney Spears's Blackout: 10 chart facts about the acclaimed album on its 10th anniversary



QUOTE(liamk97 @ Oct 26 2017, 07:17 AM) *
Britney Spears's Blackout: 10 chart facts about the acclaimed album on its 10th anniversary
26 October 2017 | By Rob Copsey

Could it be Britney's most underrated album?

Ten years ago this week, Britney Spears released what would become her most critically acclaimed album to date: Blackout.

Its chart success was almost inevitable - Britney had a strong track record on the charts, the album's lead single Gimme More had been a hit, and rarely a day passed when she wasn't been papped in the build up to its release during her much documented difficult year.

But its critical acclaim - Britney's first widespread praise for one of her records - came as a surprise to many, particularly given the months preceding its release.

The likes of Rolling Stone, Pitchfork and The Guardian all praised the record's fresh and futuristic sound, The Times ranked it as the fifth best pop album of the decade, and in 2012 it was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame library.

To celebrate its tenth birthday, Official Charts presents ten essential #ChartFacts about how the album has performed in the UK. Could it be Britney's most underrated collection?

1. Blackout entered the Official Albums Chart at Number 2 – one of five Britney albums to peak in second place (she’s never had a Number 1 album in the UK).

2. It was held off the top spot by The Eagles’ Long Road Out To Eden - Blackout's 42,207 sales to Eagles' 134,080. See what else what in the chart that week.

3. Its total UK sales are 291,075, 90% of which are physical sales. That makes it Britney’s sixth biggest studio album out of nine.

4. This year, it has amassed 1,919 sales so far across physical, digital and streaming equivalent sales.

5. Blackout has amassed 665,433 individual track downloads.

6. Despite being released in 2007, Blackout's songs have notched up a total of 11.2m streams since 2014, when streaming was added to the Official Chart.

7. Blackout includes two Top 10 singles, Gimme More (3) and Piece Of Me (2), plus Top 20 hit Break The Ice (15). See where all of Britney's singles and albums have charted in the UK.

8. Piece of Me is Blackout’s most downloaded song – 260,463.

9. Gimme More is Blackout’s most streamed song – 4 million.

10. The most downloaded and streamed non-single is Get Naked (I Got A Plan) - 368,000 streams.


http://www.buzzjack.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=206321

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KWEEN_DEE
post Nov 1 2017, 09:08 AM
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What a different world we live in..

I remember when it was "autotuned to death", "phoned in vocals".
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Jonjo
post Nov 1 2017, 05:17 PM
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It's amazing to see just HOW much impact this iconic album has had, not only in terms of helping edm become as popular as it has become, but how even the naysayers can appreciate what a modern day masterpiece this album is. It's by far her most personal album to date, and that is why I think it's got the recognition it quite rightly deserves. It came at such an important time for her. I genuinely think, had she not had this album to work on and instead suffered to her labels demands and made a ropey, bubblegum pop album instead, I really don't think we'd see the transformation she has been on since her breakdown.

It was such an awful time as a Britney fan and hearing public say things like "she's over", "I'll be surprised if she makes it to the end of the year" etc... (both quotes I actually heard from people btw sad.gif - or sentences to that effect). I feel like this was her therapy. She got the chance to get a lot of it off of her chest and boy did she deliver. I feel like this is one of the most important albums of all time, in more ways than just being "influential" and "timeless" etc..
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Tyler
post Nov 1 2017, 07:10 PM
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I think it's absolutely mind blowing and telling of how fantastic the album is when the thing that's remembered the most about that era is 'Blackout', the music. It's quite an example of her resilience as an artist that her 5th album is seen as the most influential album of her career, when her debut album is one of the best selling albums in music history. Not to mention her second album also going diamond and holding the title of largest sales debut from a female artist for over 15 years (still second right behind Adele).

I'm digging the fact the reviewers give nods to 'In The Zone' & 'Glory'. They definitely are her three most involved albums.
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KWEEN_DEE
post Nov 2 2017, 10:25 AM
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And it's her only album where she's listed as the EP.
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liamk97
post Nov 7 2017, 10:32 PM
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What a treat to read all those reviews - thanks for compiling! So great to see this album so highly regarded by critics; I know, when it comes to music, it is the reception of the fans that is most important but it still feels quite rewarding to see the critics acknowledge what a fantastic and important album it is too.

QUOTE(Tyler @ Nov 1 2017, 07:10 PM) *
I think it's absolutely mind blowing and telling of how fantastic the album is when the thing that's remembered the most about that era is 'Blackout', the music. It's quite an example of her resilience as an artist that her 5th album is seen as the most influential album of her career, when her debut album is one of the best selling albums in music history. Not to mention her second album also going diamond and holding the title of largest sales debut from a female artist for over 15 years (still second right behind Adele).

I'm digging the fact the reviewers give nods to 'In The Zone' & 'Glory'. They definitely are her three most involved albums.

Great point. Everyone knows about Britney's troubles circa 2007 but it doesn't interfere with people's perception of the music that came from this period. 'Gimme More' remains one of the most recognisable and loved Britney songs and 'Piece of Me' is one of the best "f*** you" songs with such clever, funny, catchy lyrics.
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post Nov 9 2017, 12:49 AM
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If only the label had preempted the critical attention Blackout would receive for its 10th anniversary, and put out a reissue / vinyl. I need Blackout on vinyl!

I appreciate that this has had something of a reassessment in recent years. The reviews at the time were quite good, but far more attention was paid to her personal life than the fact she'd casually dropped the best album of her career. I guess it's with the benefit of hindsight how much of an impact the album had on the music scene!

"In 2012, it became her sole album to join the archives of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame." wub.gif
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Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 17th November 2017 - 09:07 PM