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May 14 2012
All Set: The Final (?) MDNA Set List Comments (50)

Screen shot 2012-05-14 at 11.49.49 AM

Multiple sources (with a shout out to Madonnarama) have said that the final setlist for The MDNA Tour is as follows (spoilers, duh)...

"Act of Contrition"

"Girl Gone Wild" (meets "Material Girl")

"Revolver"

"Gang Bang"

"Papa Don't Preach" (edit)

"Hung Up" (MDNA remix)

"I Don't Give A" (rock remix)

"Best Friend"/"Heartbeat" (interlude)

"Express Yourself" (meets "Born This Way")

"Turn Up the Radio"

"Give Me All Your Luvin'" (Just Blaze remix)

"Open Your Heart" (meets "Sagarra Jo" by Kalakan)

"Masterpiece" (feat. Kalakan)

"Justify My Love" (William Orbit remix—interlude)

"Vogue"

"Candy Shop"

"Human Nature"

"Like a Virgin"

"Nobody Knows Me" (interlude)

"I'm Addicted"

"I'm a Sinner" (meets "Cyber-Raga")

"Like a Prayer"

"Celebration"

Counting interludes and songs that are apparently references in new mixes of other songs, we're getting songs broken down as follows among albums she's released with new material:

Madonna = 0

Like a Virgin = "Material Girl", "Like a Virgin" = 2

True Blue: "Papa Don't Preach", "Open Your Heart" = 2

Who's That Girl Soundtrack = 0

You Can Dance = 0

Like a Prayer: "Act of Contrition" (if done in this style and not just a part of "Girl Gone Wild"), "Express Yourself", "Like a Prayer" = 3

I'm Breathless: "Vogue" = 1

The Immaculate Collection: "Justify My Love" = 1

Erotica: 0

Bedtime Stories: "Human Nature" = 1

Something to Remember = 0

Evita Soundtrack = 0

Ray of Light: 0

Music: "Cyber-Raga" = 1

American Life: "Nobody Knows Me" = 1

Remixed & Revisited = 0

Confessions on a Dance Floor: "Hung Up" = 1

Hard Candy: "Heartbeat", "Candy Shop" = 2

Celebration: "Revolver", "Celebration" = 2

MDNA: "Girl Gone Wild", "Gang Bang", "I Don't Give A", "Best Friend", "Turn Up the Radio", "Give Me All Your Luvin'", "Masterpiece", "I'm Addicted", "I'm a Sinner" = 9

Non-Madonna projects with Madonna songs: 0

Non-Madonna songs: "Born This Way", "Sagarra Jo" = 2

I think this is a good mix of her best new stuff and some intelligently, if ruthlessly, selected old stuff, with a couple of surprises. It shocks me she is skimping on Madonna (mainly because "Physical Attraction" is rumored to have been rehearsed) and Erotica (an album many fans adore, and one that fits neatly—perhaps too neatly?—with MDNA's vibe), not to mention Ray of Light and Music. Is the setlist perfect? It never can be, not with a catalogue as vast as Madonna's. Some fans will never be satisfied, but most are once they see and hear the actual show she invariably puts on.

I think the first section sounds insane! It's going to be really hot. The songs seem perfectly chosen to play well together. I do continue to be amazed that she thought enough of her Celebration bonus tracks to include both of them.

The second section feels weird because "Express Yourself" begs to be at the end of a section, not at a beginning. It's so anthemic and driving that it feels like a conclusive statement. Glad to see "Open Your Heart" snuck in, and pleasantly surprised she will stand there and sing the lovely ballad "Masterpiece". (Of course, she may have other plans, but that is definitely a vocals-driven number.)

The third section seems like fun if short. The songs work well together. I love that she's carting out "Like a Virgin" because I'll always remember critics laughing of young Madonna's shelf life, "What is she gonna do, sing 'Like a Virgin' at 40?" Try 53/54. And on what will probably become one of if not the biggest money-making tours in history. I definitely don't see what she sees in "Candy Shop," a silly song that not only made last tour's set list in spite of being a much-derided leak from before Hard Candy dropped, but that also helped name the album on which it appears and said tour!

The final section sounds killer (where's "Beautiful Killer"?) but I really think it needs another song, like the rumored "Physical Attraction"! If I could change any one thing about this set list, not including adding a much-wanted song ("Rescue Me" comes to mind...) or a crowd-pleasing song ("Take a Bow" comes to mind...) I would just beg Madonna not to end her tour with "Celebration," a cute but forgotten song that doesn't really do anything for her in such an important slot. I guess I really expected her to end the tour with "Turn Up the Radio," which should be a single by then and is very sweeping and fun.

It's good, though that the tour seems to start dark and get progressively lighter, ending on an up note.

There are things I wish were on here (I can't quite believe "Love Spent" has been left in the cold), and a few I wish were off (really only "Candy Shop" and "Revolver" bug me as tone-deaf choices). Some will carp about "Human Nature" getting yet another live performance (in truth, it's not a favorite of mine), but it is excitingly placed, and others are sick of "Like a Prayer," to which I say: "It's arguably her best-ever song." (For me, "Into the Groove" is her best, but "Like a Prayer" is right up there.) There are a couple of songs still rumored to be under consideration, chief among them "Everybody" or preferably "Physical Attraction".

Ultimately, Madonna probably would not tour if she felt she couldn't do it with a lot of new material, and thankfully I really love MDNA. But even if I didn't, I'd be happy to lump the new stuff because her live performances are unparalleled. I can't wait to see and hear this thing...five times!

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