Bionic - Christina Aguilera
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Mixed or average reviews - based on 21 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 491 Ratings

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  • Summary: Subtlety not being part of Christina Aguilera’s vocabulary, she trades the retro-swing of Back to Basics for the future-pop of Bionic, receiving assists from a roster that reads like a who’s-who of progressive pop in 2010: M.I.A., Le Tigre, Peaches, and John Hill & Switch, known for their work with Santigold. But like the half-cyborg/half-diva illustration of the album cover, this revamp is only partial. Aguilera hedges her bets by adding a ballad from old friend Linda Perry, gets Tricky Stewart to produce a trio of cuts, drafts Polow da Don and Focus… to produce some heavy and slow R&B, respectively, letting enough air into the machines to reassure hesitant fans that she hasn’t abandoned her roots. All this hesitancy means that for as many risks as it takes, Bionic doesn’t feel daring. Apart from the stuttering opener of the title track and glassy chill of “Elastic Love,” notably the two Hill & Switch productions, this never delivers the future shock it promises, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, because the robot-diva hybrids are often interesting even when they stumble, as they do on “WooHoo,” its incessant title loop piercing like a dental drill. Exhibit A in Xtina’s curious tin ear for sex, “WooHoo” doesn’t work as temptation, not when the chorus come-on is “licky licky yum yum,” but her crassness is no longer alienating as it was on Stripped; it’s simply part of her persona, just like her shameless narcissism, showcased on the closing “Vanity,” where she gets her kid to confirm that she’s the greatest of them all. This triumphant self-possession comes so naturally to Christina that it’s hard not to wish that she acted so boldly throughout Bionic, letting the entirety of the record be as distinctly odd as its best moments. Frankly, the deluxe edition of Bionic does suggest what the album could have been: it’s supplemented by four bonus songs that are wildly imaginative, whether it’s the clattering, chanting “Bobblehead,” the cool synth glide of “Birds of Prey,” the perfect new wave pop of “Monday Morning,” or Sia’s mournful ballad “Stronger Than Ever.” In their place on the album proper are competent, relatively colorless club odes to fashion and fabulousness and Perry’s boring inspirational “Lift Me Up,” songs that play to Aguilera’s persona without inhabiting it. The rest of Bionic -- not just the hipster flirtations and Sia’s trio of richly ruminative AAA ballads, but the tracks directly within Aguilera’s wheelhouse, like Tricky Stewart’s wildly successful, slinky “Desnudate,” and the sultry slow burner “Sex for Breakfast” -- find Christina not playing to expectations but simply acting as a natural diva and is all the more compelling for it. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine Expand
  • Record Label: RCA
  • Genre(s): R&B, Soul, Urban, Adult Contemporary, Pop/Rock, Dance-Pop, Contemporary Pop/Rock, Euro-Pop, Neo-Soul
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 21
  2. Negative: 1 out of 21
  1. This triumphant self-possession comes so naturally to Christina that it's hard not to wish that she acted so boldly throughout Bionic, letting the entirety of the record be as distinctly odd as its best moments.
  2. For the most part--and in the album's most successful vein--Aguilera plays a hyper-sexed lover bot ready to tie you to the bed posts rather than tie your ears into knots with a well-executed legato.
  3. 60
    Buried under reverb, distortion, and computer st-st-stutter, our pop astronaut mostly wastes the forward-thinking production with cringeworthy lines.
  4. Now, on her new album, Bionic, how has she decided to present herself? Mostly as a sexbot: a one-dimensional hot chick chanting come-ons to club beats.
  5. Daring as some of the tracks are, they overwhelmingly loop her vocal around a generic house lick that has the effect of giving her very little to do vocally.
  6. Things stall mid-album with a string of dull ballads.
  7. It would've been fascinating to see how far a full-blown collaboration might've taken her, but Aguilera spreads out the songwriting and production credits in search of more hits, most of which come off as flimsy gimmicks.

See all 21 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 18 out of 147
  1. Apr 16, 2011
    Christina Aguilera goes from retro Baby Jane to futuristic Madame X in her fourth full-length studio album. The album's inspiration resonates from her pregnancy and life and feeling like a full-accomplished superhuman character, much like a Bionic woman.

    The album is filled with different types of electronic songs and eventually transitions into songs of full-emotion and vulnerability. The album ranges from different types of songs and clearly proves that Christina Aguilera can do pretty much anything.

    My favourite songs are Desnudate, Prima Donna, Sex For Breakfast, Lift Me Up, I Am (Stripped), Vanity, Birds of Prey, and Stronger Than Ever. The only song that I don't favor so much would be Elastic Love, as it strikes rather boring to me, but I do like it's electronic elements. All the ballads are wonderful and it's nice to see all this wonderful dance music from Christina.

    I give this album a 10 - don't listen to the mainstream critics, it is a great record. I honestly enjoyed it much more than Back to Basics.
  2. Mar 26, 2013
    álbum muito criticado, porem poucos enxergaram a beleza contida nesse cd ele inspirado, renovador e traz ao pop um lado totalmente diferente, não acho que The Fame da cantora Lady GaGa fique muito em cima de Bionic, embora muito dos críticos descordam! Expand
  3. Sep 12, 2011
    Altought this album doesn't reach the great sounds of Stripped, Christina did her best as ever. The up-tempo songs like Not Myself Tonight are really energic. The best song of the album is a ballad, Lift Me Up sang beautifully. Expand
  4. Sep 24, 2010
    At first I only liked Bionic, Not Myself Tonight, and Woohoo. Then it grew to I Hate Boys, Vanity, and I Am. Then that list grew to Prima Donna, Glam, and I Am Stripped. Then it grew to Desnudate, All I Need, My Girls, and Bobblehead, Some are original Christina, some are the new Xtina. An album that's got good songs, and Aguilera's strong voice outshines herself. Expand
  5. Mar 31, 2013
    Bionic, in my opinion, you REALLY must listen it it. Personally i never listened to it before because it was labelled 'flop' 'worst album ever' etc, but after i gave it a listen, some songs are good and some not so good. Not Myself Tonight being the lead and only sucsessful single is not even the best so by not listening you are missing out on SOME catchy songs. Im only going to tell you what songs to listen to because the rest of the albums is awful. First let me start by saying Bionic should've been a single because it is for sure the best song on the album. The first verse might turn you off at first(as i was like what is this?) but if you listen its actually good, and that bridge WOW! The bridge is really good and defiantly the best but of the whole song, the chorus is good to. So now as i've gave a review of one song ill just tell you what else to listen to. So after listening to the whole album i understand this whole 'Futuristic' take on pop and i can say the album will be appriciated in a while, just not right now. I defiantly think the best songs from the album are of course Bionic and the others would be Woo Hoo (Feat. Nicki Minaj), Desnudate, Not Myself Tonight and You Lost Me. There the only acceptable songs but i guess if you like them you could give Elastic Love and Prima Donna a listen there ok. The rest of the album i dislike personally but thats my opinion. So just give those a listen and see what you think Expand
  6. May 29, 2011
    This album is great! I would say that Christina tried something new for herself, something that really sounds true, and she haven't changed in many ways herself, she found that balance... Along the way, while many others who are now tried in electro-pop. Album multifaceted, each listener will find something that will be liked. Expand
  7. Apr 16, 2012

See all 147 User Reviews