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Lady Gaga - BORN THIS WAY THE TENTH ANNIVERSARY

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BORN THIS WAY THE TENTH ANNIVERSARY

Lady Gaga

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Not long into the ceaseless promotional parade for Born This Way, Lady Gaga’s second full-length record and easily the most anticipated record of the 2010s, a certain sense of inevitability crept into play. It was inevitable that Born This Way would be an escalation of The Fame, it was inevitable that Gaga would go where others feared to tread, it was inevitable that it would be bigger than any other record thrown down in 2011, both in its scale and success. This drumbeat, pulsating as insistently as Eurodisco, is so persistent that there is an inevitable feeling of anticlimax upon hearing Born This Way for the first time and realizing that Lady Gaga has channeled her grand ambitions into her message, and not her music. Gaga has taken it upon herself to filter out whatever personal details remain in her songs so she can write anthems for her Little Monsters, that ragtag group of queers, misfits, outcasts, and rough kids who she calls her own. Gaga is hardly insincere -- this isn’t an act, she’s been instrumental as a gay rights activist -- but her conquistador stance ironically reduces Born This Way to a collection of songs about fashion, freaks, and religion, with the occasional respite arriving via German unicorns. Unfortunately, this doesn’t play quite as weird as it reads. Whatever performance art shock Gaga had on The Fame/The Fame Monster has turned into pure theater. Her drama club ambition to marry rock & roll rebellion with her disco beats turns Born This Way into Like a Prayer by way of Bat Out of Hell. Gaga has chosen not to dig under the skin. She’s quite content to state her themes then let them be, using them as the connecting thread on an ‘80s pastiche set to a relentless Eurotrash throb. Echoes of Whitney Houston, Pat Benatar, and Bruce Springsteen -- whose longtime running partner Clarence Clemons blows sax on two songs --- can be heard throughout, but it is naturally Madonna who is the cornerstone, giving Gaga the “Express Yourself” melody -- which is reworked on no less than three songs on the Deluxe Edition (and really, with an album this over the top, why skimp with the standard edition?) -- and a pop precedent for Catholic guilt. Lady Gaga doesn’t so much rip off Madonna as knowingly recontextualize the Material Girl for a post-modern collage, the sly similarities offering tangible reminders that Gaga is the heir to the diva throne. And Born This Way does solidify her standing as something of a pop visionary, although Gaga is a little bit too eager to embrace her role as messiah, letting her skills as a songwriter slide ever so slightly. Gaga’s true gift is her considerable dexterity at delivering the basics. Unlike so many of her peers, she does not cut and paste her tracks digitally, she constructs from the chords up, then accessorizes at will. She doesn’t abandon this sensibility on Born This Way, but she does take it for granted, never pushing her compositions or productions into unpredictable territory. She serves up the expected, which can be quite satisfying: “Marry the Night” glistens with a neon pulse, “Born This Way” has a giddiness to its self-importance, “Judas” turns “Alejandro” into towering gothic disco, she achieves her metal-disco fusion on “Bad Kids,” and she even shows vulnerability on “Yoü and I.” All well and good, and all very entertaining, but this is an album that’s meant to be more: it’s intended to be a soundtrack to a way of life, but it winds up playing as a collection of songs.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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BORN THIS WAY THE TENTH ANNIVERSARY

Lady Gaga

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1
Marry The Night
Lady Gaga
00:04:24

Fernando Garibay, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

2
Born This Way
Lady Gaga
00:04:20

Fernando Garibay, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Lady Gaga, Producer, Keyboards, Vocals, Recording Arranger, Instrumental Ensemble, Background Vocalist, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Stefani Germanotta, ComposerLyricist - Jeppe Breum Laursen, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Edward Blair, ComposerLyricist - DJ White Shadow, Producer

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

3
Government Hooker
Lady Gaga
00:04:14

William Grigahcine, ComposerLyricist - Fernando Garibay, ComposerLyricist - Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, Producer, ComposerLyricist - C. Sparks, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

4
Judas
Lady Gaga
00:04:09

Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Redone, Producer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc., Mit freundlicher Genehmigung: Universal Music Group, Inc.

5
Americano
Lady Gaga
00:04:06

Fernando Garibay, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Brian Lee, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, Producer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

6
Hair
Lady Gaga
00:05:07

Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Redone, Producer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

7
Scheiße
Lady Gaga
00:03:44

Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Redone, Producer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

8
Bloody Mary
Lady Gaga
00:04:04

William Grigahcine, ComposerLyricist - Fernando Garibay, ComposerLyricist - Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, Producer, ComposerLyricist - C. Sparks, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

9
Bad Kids
Lady Gaga
00:03:50

Fernando Garibay, Producer - Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Jeppe Laursen, Producer - Jeppe Breum Laursen, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

10
Highway Unicorn (Road To Love)
Lady Gaga
00:04:15

Fernando Garibay, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Redone, Producer - Brian Lee, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, Producer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

11
Heavy Metal Lover
Lady Gaga
00:04:12

Fernando Garibay, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

12
Electric Chapel
Lady Gaga
00:04:13

Lady Gaga, Producer, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, Producer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

13
Yoü And I
Lady Gaga
00:05:07

Robert John "Mutt" Lange, Producer - Lady Gaga, Producer, Piano, Vocalist, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Brian May, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

14
The Edge Of Glory
Lady Gaga
00:05:20

Fernando Garibay, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Lady Gaga, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2011 UMG Recordings, Inc.

DISC 2

1
Marry The Night
Kylie Minogue
00:04:38

Biff Stannard, Producer, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Duck Blackwell, Producer, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Fernando Garibay, ComposerLyricist - Kylie Minogue, Engineer, MainArtist, StudioPersonnel - Stefani Germanotta, ComposerLyricist - Jon Castelli, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Randy Merrill, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 Darenote Limited

2
Judas
Big Freedia
00:04:07

Nadir Khayat, ComposerLyricist - Stefani Germanotta, ComposerLyricist - Matt Perrine, Sousaphone, AssociatedPerformer - Boyfriend, Producer - Big Freedia, MainArtist - Suzannah Powell, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Raion Ramsey, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Anjelika 'Jelly' Joseph, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Nick Ellman, Saxophone, Horn & Director, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Ramirez, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Miles Comasky, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Gold Glove, Producer - Steve Lands, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Jasmine Buggage, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Interscope Records

3
Highway Unicorn (Road To Love)
The Highwomen
00:03:34

Fernando Garibay, ComposerLyricist - Brian Lee, ComposerLyricist - Peter Levin, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer - Stefani Germanotta, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, ComposerLyricist - Lawrence Rothman, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Randy Merrill, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Julian Dorio, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Jimbo Hart, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - MADELINE EDWARDS, FeaturedArtist - The Highwomen, MainArtist - Louis Remenapp, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brittney Spencer, FeaturedArtist - Skyler Chuckry, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Bennet Lewis, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Interscope Records

4
Yoü And I
David Campbell
00:04:41

David Campbell, Strings Contractor, Leader, AssociatedPerformer - Suzie Katayama, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Charlie Bisharat, Violin, Concertmaster, AssociatedPerformer - STEVE Churchyard, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Andrew Duckles, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Aaron Sterling, Drums, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Josefina Vergara, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Sara Parkins, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Kerenza Peacock, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Alyssa Park, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Tereza Stanislav, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Paula Hochhalter, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Matthew Funes, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Stefani Germanotta, ComposerLyricist - Jacob Braun, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Mitch McCarthy, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Randy Merrill, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Michael Pollack, Producer - Michael Wooten, Organ, AssociatedPerformer - Ben Platt, MainArtist - Gian Stone, Producer, Guitar, Recording Engineer, Bass, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 Atlantic Recording Corporation

5
The Edge Of Glory
Years & Years
00:03:58

Fernando Garibay, ComposerLyricist - Mark Ralph, Producer, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Stefani Germanotta, ComposerLyricist - Paul Blair, ComposerLyricist - Years & Years, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Dan Gretch, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Randy Merrill, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 Polydor Records, a division of Universal Music Operations Limited

6
Born This Way (The Country Road Version)
Orville Peck
00:04:18

Fernando Garibay, ComposerLyricist - Jason Lader, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Pete Min, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Josh Gudwin, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Stefani Germanotta, ComposerLyricist - Jeppe Breum Laursen, ComposerLyricist - Jake Davis, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Edward Blair, ComposerLyricist - Kane Ritchotte, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Stracey, Producer, Guitar, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Randy Merrill, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Luke Schneider, Pedal Steel, AssociatedPerformer - Max Whipple, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Orville Peck, Producer, Castanets, Guitar, Vocals, Harmonica, Background Vocalist, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Riley Keough, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Columbia Records

Album Description

Not long into the ceaseless promotional parade for Born This Way, Lady Gaga’s second full-length record and easily the most anticipated record of the 2010s, a certain sense of inevitability crept into play. It was inevitable that Born This Way would be an escalation of The Fame, it was inevitable that Gaga would go where others feared to tread, it was inevitable that it would be bigger than any other record thrown down in 2011, both in its scale and success. This drumbeat, pulsating as insistently as Eurodisco, is so persistent that there is an inevitable feeling of anticlimax upon hearing Born This Way for the first time and realizing that Lady Gaga has channeled her grand ambitions into her message, and not her music. Gaga has taken it upon herself to filter out whatever personal details remain in her songs so she can write anthems for her Little Monsters, that ragtag group of queers, misfits, outcasts, and rough kids who she calls her own. Gaga is hardly insincere -- this isn’t an act, she’s been instrumental as a gay rights activist -- but her conquistador stance ironically reduces Born This Way to a collection of songs about fashion, freaks, and religion, with the occasional respite arriving via German unicorns. Unfortunately, this doesn’t play quite as weird as it reads. Whatever performance art shock Gaga had on The Fame/The Fame Monster has turned into pure theater. Her drama club ambition to marry rock & roll rebellion with her disco beats turns Born This Way into Like a Prayer by way of Bat Out of Hell. Gaga has chosen not to dig under the skin. She’s quite content to state her themes then let them be, using them as the connecting thread on an ‘80s pastiche set to a relentless Eurotrash throb. Echoes of Whitney Houston, Pat Benatar, and Bruce Springsteen -- whose longtime running partner Clarence Clemons blows sax on two songs --- can be heard throughout, but it is naturally Madonna who is the cornerstone, giving Gaga the “Express Yourself” melody -- which is reworked on no less than three songs on the Deluxe Edition (and really, with an album this over the top, why skimp with the standard edition?) -- and a pop precedent for Catholic guilt. Lady Gaga doesn’t so much rip off Madonna as knowingly recontextualize the Material Girl for a post-modern collage, the sly similarities offering tangible reminders that Gaga is the heir to the diva throne. And Born This Way does solidify her standing as something of a pop visionary, although Gaga is a little bit too eager to embrace her role as messiah, letting her skills as a songwriter slide ever so slightly. Gaga’s true gift is her considerable dexterity at delivering the basics. Unlike so many of her peers, she does not cut and paste her tracks digitally, she constructs from the chords up, then accessorizes at will. She doesn’t abandon this sensibility on Born This Way, but she does take it for granted, never pushing her compositions or productions into unpredictable territory. She serves up the expected, which can be quite satisfying: “Marry the Night” glistens with a neon pulse, “Born This Way” has a giddiness to its self-importance, “Judas” turns “Alejandro” into towering gothic disco, she achieves her metal-disco fusion on “Bad Kids,” and she even shows vulnerability on “Yoü and I.” All well and good, and all very entertaining, but this is an album that’s meant to be more: it’s intended to be a soundtrack to a way of life, but it winds up playing as a collection of songs.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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