American Life

American Life Image
Metascore
60

Mixed or average reviews - based on 17 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 304 Ratings

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  • Summary: Madonna's second collaboration with French electronic producer Mirwais includes the lead single title track as well as her recent James Bond theme, "Die Another Day."
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 17
  2. Negative: 3 out of 17
  1. Aside from the thumping groove of "Nobody Knows Me" and a few other bouncy beats, much of the electro style Madonna experimented with on 2000's Music has been replaced with warmer sounds and earthy touches, like acoustic guitars and a choir that comes from nowhere on "Nothing Fails."
  2. Unlike recent collections Music and Ray of Light, the lyrical content of American Life relies less on spiritual introspection and more on woman-in-the-mirror confrontation.
  3. All perfectly good stuff, technically excellent. But 'American Life' also feels like an unnecessary sequel, a 'Men In Black II', made because hell, if it ain't broke...
  4. Q Magazine
    60
    It's a record about being Madonna. [Jun 2003, p.90]
  5. Overall, American Life is better for what it promises than what it delivers, and it's better in theory than practice.
  6. Blender
    60
    That's both the best and the worst thing about this album: The music is much more eloquent than the lyrics. [May 2003, p.112]
  7. Even modest expectations can't salvage the clunky, ponderous American Life, which fares only slightly better than "Hanky Panky" and Swept Away on her list of offenses.

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 83 out of 96
  2. Negative: 6 out of 96
  1. Mar 26, 2012
    10
    American Life is Madonna's most underrated album. You can tell from reviews all around the web that it's a love it or hate it album. It'sAmerican Life is Madonna's most underrated album. You can tell from reviews all around the web that it's a love it or hate it album. It's definitely not in-your-face pop, so I would avoid this one if you're just looking for radio-friendly material. On this album, we see Madonna at her most vulnerable. From the cynical American Life to the touching Mother and Father, Madonna takes us on a tour of her world. I applaud her guts, especially for the American Life video, which raised controversy like never before. Notable tracks: American Life, Love Profusion, Nothing Fails, X-Static Process. Expand
  2. EduardoM.
    Dec 24, 2006
    10
    Stop the criticism the album is great songs like nothing fails,mother and father,x-tactic process stand out....weak songs are American life Stop the criticism the album is great songs like nothing fails,mother and father,x-tactic process stand out....weak songs are American life and i'm so stupid. Expand
  3. TRhgfegdsghs
    Jan 9, 2005
    10
    Great!
  4. PatrickK
    Apr 25, 2003
    9
    More consistent than Music.
  5. Jun 10, 2012
    9
    This is her best album so far....I´m not a fan at all but I have to admit that "American Life" has been criticized in a wrong wayThis is her best album so far....I´m not a fan at all but I have to admit that "American Life" has been criticized in a wrong way because people was focusing on lyrics or the way it was a alternative to "Music" (Which was a puzzzle/transition album) I really listen to that album nowadays and think that it is much better than her "Confession on a dance floor" (an album much more focused on the "old fashioned disco dance sound") or the ridiculous last one"MDNA (A mixture of her last successes cause of her lack of imagination....) She would have to risk herself again, as she did 10 years ago, because, without that, she will belong to the "ridiculous artist Family" (when a cousciousness generation of listeners was about to give her the musical legytimacy). Expand
  6. GCQ
    May 22, 2004
    8
    Features the euphoric Nothing Fails, lyrical gem Intervention, and the stop the presses this is the shit EASY RIDE. Not the dance Pop record Features the euphoric Nothing Fails, lyrical gem Intervention, and the stop the presses this is the shit EASY RIDE. Not the dance Pop record you typically expect from her...but those expectations be damned this is a deeply personal and solid piece of work. Only misteps are the title track and I'm so stupid. Everything else is top notch! Expand
  7. abern
    Jul 3, 2005
    0
    a big letdown. could this be the end of her musical career?

See all 96 User Reviews