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[2006] Christina Aguilera - Back To Basics (Mp3 Download)



Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine @ allmusic.com
When Christina Aguilera released her garish, sexually charged sophomore effort, Stripped, in 2002, it seemed that she pushed her obsessions with tweaking taboos just a little too far. Sure, she could still sing, but her music was now driven entirely by skeletal club grooves and explicit carnality. It was a bold break from the teenybopper persona she was desperate to shed, but it was overcorrective steering, taking her a little bit too far down the road toward a grotesque caricature, particularly in her ugly video for the album's lead single, "Dirrty." All this grandstanding provoked an intense reaction, not just among fans but among her collaborators, who also wondered if Christina was going a little too far, but she managed to keep from sinking largely on the strength of the ballad "Beautiful," an empowering statement of self-love that managed to dampen "Dirrty"'s impact even if it didn't erase it. It also set the stage for the next phase of her career: as an outright old-fashioned diva, much like Madonna or Cher. Smartly, she followed this path for her third album, the sprawling, deliriously entertaining double-disc Back to Basics.

The title alone on Back to Basics is an allusion that perhaps Christina herself thinks she might have gone a little too far with Stripped; she stops short of offering an apology -- she even has a song where she proclaims she's "Still Dirrty" -- but this album's emphasis on songs and singing, along with the fixation with the big-band era, does suggest that Aguilera is ready to be once again seen as a world-class vocalist. Nevertheless, Back to Basics also makes clear that Stripped, for as flawed as it is, was also a necessary artistic move for Christina: she needed to get that out of her system in order to create her own style, one that is self-consciously stylized, stylish, and sexy. As the endless series of pinup photos in the album's booklet illustrates, Christina is obsessed with earning credibility through association: she dresses up as a big-band vamp and drops allusions to Etta James, Billie Holiday, and Aretha Franklin, all under the assumption that listeners will think of Ms. Aguilera as the heir to that throne. While she may have the vocal chops to pull it off to a certain extent, Back to Basics doesn't quite feel like it belongs to the classic soul and R&B tradition, even if the second disc is designed to be an old-fashioned jazzy R&B album, complete with bluesy torch songs and occasionally live instrumentation. Aguilera's instincts are too modern to make the album sound classic. She remains stubbornly autobiographical -- she disses departed producer Scott Storch on "F.U.S.S.," again addresses the abuse inflicted on her mother by her father, spends much of the album detailing her love for her new husband, Jordan, and always filters everything through a very personal filter that makes this seem like a journal entry à la Alanis Morissette (even "Thank You," subtitled as her dedication to her fans, isn't about the fans; it's about how Christina has inspired them, saved their life, or kept them going while stationed in Iraq -- all stories recounted in the voicemail that runs throughout the track). Her lyrics remain bluntly direct, particularly when she talks about sex: "Candyman" makes her cherry pop and her panties drop, while the "Nasty Naughty Boy" will receive "a little taste of the sugar below my waist." That combined with the slick, precise computerized production means that even when Christina tries to sound classic, she winds up sounding like the present.

But that's what's good about Back to Basics -- even though she strives hard to be a classic soul singer here, she can't help but sound like herself, and surely there is no other big-budget pop album in 2006 that bears the stamp of its auteur so clearly. As she did on Stripped, she has gotten to indulge herself here, but where she was more concerned with sound than structure last time around, on Back to Basics she spends just as much time on song and structure, often coming up with strong, memorable ballads and dance tunes on both the dance-oriented first disc and the slow-burning second. Of course, she reveals more than she intended through her indulgence. Try as she may to sound like a classic singer from the '40s, she really seems to have learned all of her moves from Madonna in Dick Tracy; whether she's shaking her hips to a canned brass section or breathing heavily into a microphone, every move seems to have been copped from Breathless Mahoney -- and that's not just on the campily retro "Candyman" (which sounds like a rewrite of "Hanky Panky"), but it's also true on the deliberately modern numbers like "Ain't No Other Man," whose stabs of sampled brass sound straight out of early-'90s jazz-rap. When Aguilera does stray from the Madonna template here, it's to wander into Fiona Apple territory on the second disc -- with its loping piano, "Mercy on Me" is a dead ringer for anything from When the Pawn Hits the Conflicts He Thinks Like a King. There are hints of a couple other artists here -- some echoes of Norah Jones on the torch songs -- but the fusion of Madonna and Fiona Apple is so inspired and unexpected, it sounds original because nobody else would have thought of it, or put it together in such wildly weird ways as Christina does here. Sure, Back to Basics is way too long at two discs and some of it doesn't work quite as well as the rest, but it has far more hits than misses and it holds together as an artistic statement (certainly more so than any other album made by one of her teen pop peers). It may be all about style, it may be a little crass and self-centered, but it's also catchy, exciting, and unique. It's an album to build a career upon, which would be a remarkable achievement by any measure, but coming after the near career suicide of Stripped, it's all the more impressive.


Track Lists
CD 1
01. Intro (Back To Basics)
02. Makes Me Wanna Pray
03. Back In The Day
04. Ain't No Other Man
05. Understand
06. Slow Down Baby
07. Oh Mother
08. F.U.S.S.
09. On Our Way
10. Without You
11. Still Dirrty
12. Here To Stay
13. Thank You (Dedication To Fans...)

CD 2
01. Enter The Circus
02. Welcome
03. Candyman
04. Nasty Naughty Boy
05. I Got Trouble
06. Hurt
07. Mercy On Me
08. Save Me From Myself
09. The Right Man

Download Instruction

I had already tested the links before I posted the album with "Internet Download Manager". If you fail to download all mp3s on this blog, you should try it conventionally through "Save Target As.." for Explorer users or "Save Link As.." for Firefox users. If the problem persists, links are invalid.

Notice

  • All mp3s on this site are not on our server, we only found them by search engine. So, don't ask if they became invalid.
  • Although you can have all these mp3s for free, I still recommend you to buy the original CD. I do buy the original CD.
  • All credits go to original uploader...

What People Said

preshay it man :D Anonymous Anonymous :: 8/11/06, 2:00 PM :: Top  

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Thanks! I have been looking for this album everywhere! Anonymous Anonymous :: 8/14/06, 2:57 PM :: Top  

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u r great dude - wish you had Beyonce's lastest as well... Anonymous Anonymous :: 8/15/06, 9:18 AM :: Top  

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if anyone know where I can find Beyonce's lastest - send me a note:
take35ok@yahoo.com Thanks Anonymous Anonymous :: 8/15/06, 9:23 AM :: Top  

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help me download this stuff plz.... Anonymous Anonymous :: 8/16/06, 8:54 PM :: Top  

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I can't find the image for downloading... help, please! Anonymous Anonymous :: 8/17/06, 1:21 AM :: Top  

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sorry, I didn't notice, but apparently this only offered for limited time. I'll post another links If I can find a new one. thanks by the way..... Blogger riefky w. el huraibi :: 8/17/06, 10:32 AM :: Top  

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thank you, it's great Anonymous meteta :: 8/18/06, 2:29 AM :: Top  

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Thanks~
That's really great~
I look forward to seeing the latest of razorlight Anonymous Anonymous :: 8/19/06, 2:19 PM :: Top  

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i need the picture at the bottom it wont cum up so how do i download it Anonymous Anonymous :: 8/23/06, 2:54 AM :: Top  

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Hey the links don't work anymore. Any chance of reposting?? Thanks. Anonymous Anonymous :: 9/2/06, 12:54 PM :: Top  

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OK, here's the deal with downloading these tracks..
Click on the track you want and you'll be taken to a Japanese website. Let the little video commercial run and then you'll hear the track being streamed in the media player. Under this you'll see a bunch of orange boxes. Right click on the first one and 'Save Target As'. Just rename the file, if you want, once you're done so you can find it easily. And bingo bango.

No, really, you're welcome.
munkychops Anonymous Anonymous :: 9/4/06, 4:59 AM :: Top  

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i followed munkychops advise and for the most part, had no problem, however, please see the notes below as not all songs could be downloaded:

on disc 1, tracks 4, 8, 11 & 12 are unavailable for download

on disc 2, tracks 5, 7, and 9 cannot be downloaded

any way to get this fixed?? Anonymous sweet t :: 9/21/06, 9:08 PM :: Top  

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well, actually you can get the tracks just by letting the media player stream and buffer the track. once its fully buffered 100% and the tracks being played, you can check your 'temporary internet files' folder in drive C: and voila! the tracks you want are available there. its also worked for any kinds of media files being played using basic media player. just visit your 'temporary internet folder' everytime before you turn off your pc. there are many things to be found there. Anonymous [vS.]™ :: 11/15/06, 1:39 PM :: Top  

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I really wanna dld the song "save me from myself" but I just can't cuz the link is broken. Can someone plz fix it?? Thx a lot! Anonymous Anonymous :: 12/6/06, 7:43 AM :: Top  

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just updated all songs to a new link

enjoy it... Blogger riefky w. el huraibi :: 2/14/07, 10:40 PM :: Top  

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it says i need a password. can someone help me? thanks!! Blogger Tim :: 3/30/07, 7:45 AM :: Top  

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Man, how do I download this album? It's asking for a password... =/ Anonymous Kate :: 5/17/07, 7:25 AM :: Top  

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yea, needs a password.
is admin willing to reupload the album / update the links again?

it wld be a gr8 favour, it's for my girl man! Anonymous luke :: 6/27/07, 3:22 PM :: Top  

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umm.. i need some help. it's needing a password. help? Anonymous Anonymous :: 7/4/07, 3:27 AM :: Top  

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how do you downlaod it??? password? Anonymous Anonymous :: 10/12/07, 2:56 AM :: Top  

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