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* Christina Aguilera’s new album, “Liberation,” out now
* First album in almost six years
* Fans are already calling it a “masterpiece”
“Liberation” has already garnered tons of positive reviews from critics, and some fans are calling it her “masterpiece.” The album features collaborations with artists Demi Lovato, Keida, Ty Dolla Sign and 2 Chainz and new production collaborators such as Kanye West and Anderson Paak.
To celebrate Aguilera’s latest release, we are taking a look back at her previous studio albums to see how they stack up. Continue reading for some blasts from the past and see if you agree with our rankings.
“Lotus” was Christina’s seventh studio album and one that was expected to be her major comeback after the lukewarm reception to her previous album, “Bionic” (below). This album, however, under-performed on the charts and received mostly mixed reviews across the board. The album incorporated pop styles with elements of dance-pop and rock and Aguilera ended up releasing just two singles, which were confusingly different: the pop track, “Your Body,” and “Just a Fool,” which was a country-fied duet with her The Voice co-star, Blake Shelton.
“Bionic” was released four years after Aguilera’s successful album, “Back to Basics” but commercially did not perform as well as any of her previous albums. The album was inspired by electronic music and had an eclectic mix of electronic songs for the first half of the album and ballads for the second half, with its main themes incorporating sex and post-feminism. The album produced two international singles, “Not Myself Tonight” and “You Lost Me.”
5. My Kind of Christmas
“My Kind of Christmas” is Aguilera’s first holiday album and is a mixture of cover versions of classic Christmas songs as well as some original recordings. Covers such as “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and “Oh Holy Night” are featured on the album along with some original recordings that have dance-pop-type elements. While it didn’t produce a breakout hit, like Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” the album was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America and reached number 1 on the Billboard Holiday Albums Charts. It remains a solid seasonal selection in our holiday music arsenal.
4. Mi Reflejo
Aguilera’s second studio album and first Spanish language album, “Mi Reflejo” came on the heels of the commercial success that was her self-titled debut album. With such big shoes to fill, the album performed amazingly well and led to Aguilera receiving a Latin Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Album and Two Billboard Latin Music Awards. Released during the height of the late 90s/early 2000s “Latin invasion” (think: Ricky Martin, Enrique Igelsias, Shakira, etc.) the album showcased Aguilera’s Ecuadorian heritage, and includes five Spanish versions of tracks from her previous album, four original compositions and two cover songs. Three singles were released including “Ven Conmigo,” “Pero Me Acuerdo de Ti,” and “Falsas Esperanzas.”
3. Back to Basics
As is popular with a lot of artists, Aguilera decided to portray a new persona for the drop of her “Back to Basics” album. Her alter ego, “Baby Jane,” came out for the promotion of this special double album which included a new physical appearance and styling inspired by classic Hollywood. According to the singer, the album was a “fusion of jazz and soul inspirations with a modernized style” and was inspired by some iconic singers such as Billie Holiday, Otis Redding and Etta James. Critics complimented the diversity of the album and it received mostly positive reviews. It also scored Aguilera a Grammy Nomination. Singles include the popular “Candyman,” “Ain’t No Other Man” and “Still Dirrty.”
2. Christina Aguilera
The self-titled debut album that put Christina Aguilera on the map, this album came at the right time when we were all celebrating the peak of 90s pop. This was Aguilera’s first full album release, though her first song release was “Reflection,” which was the theme song for the successful Disney movie, Mulan, and what laid the foundation for the album.
The album incorporated dance and teen pop genres with a few voice-showcasing tracks of soul and R&B. It earned Aguilera a Best New Artist Grammy, debuted at number one on Billboard and has since sold more than 14 million copies worldwide. Her smash hit, “Genie in a Bottle,” led the album with “What a Girl Wants,” “I Turn to You” and Come on Over Baby” following as popular singles.
Considered by some to one of the best albums to debut in the 2000s, “Stripped” marked Aguilera’s transition from teen pop to certified musical superstar. Taking over creative control of the album both musically and lyrically, the album featured many different genres, from pop and R&B, to metal, rock and hip-hop. This was her first album where she also took on her alter ego, “Xtina,” which showcased a more raw, sexually empowered Christina Aguilera.
Five singles were released from this best-selling album including, international hit “Dirrty,” her empowering ballad that still holds relevant today, “Beautiful,” and top 10 hits including “Fighter,” “Can’t Hold Us Down” and “The Voice Within.”