Madonna is no stranger to reinventing herself. She’s had more phases than the moon at this point, but the 60-year-old pop idol isn’t done yet.
On Monday, she teased her 13.4 million Instagram followers with ultra-short video clips–more like GIFs, honestly–of herself. In one, she wears a sheer, black-and-white polka dot gown while rocking out on a black and red acoustic guitar.
The other video shows Madonna wearing only a black silk blouse and fishnet tights, playing the accordion. Her look in both videos is much different than we’re used to seeing. Her hair is dark and styled in short waves like a silent film actress. Her only obvious makeup is some seriously bright red lipstick.
Does her new style reflect the kind of music we can expect from the new album? She has a real Amanda Palmer/Cabaret vibe that’s much more “indie chic” than her earlier incarnations as a blonde pinup goddess.
This new alter ego is apparently called Madame X, a character she created for the album of the same name. Madonna producer a longer video explaining that Madame X is a secret agent who changes her identity and uses her skills to fight for freedom and bring light to dark places. She has many facets, including “the spy in the house of love.”
We won’t have to wait long to find out more–the first single drops tomorrow! It’s called “Medellin” and features Maluma. You can expect some Colombian reggaeton flavor from the collab.
Madonna confirmed that the album is heavily influenced by her life in Portugal. She spent 2017 living in Lisbon, where she “met lots of really amazing musicians.” She was particularly entranced by traditional fado music, as well as flamenco and kuduro music from Angola. To this multicultural mix, she blended traditional jazz.
It sounds super ambitious, but Maddona has never shied away from a challenge!
Her last album, Rebel Heart, faced a major hurdle before its release 4 years ago. Multiple songs were leaked when an Israeli hacker stole the files from Madonna’s computer. The rushed release didn’t hurt sales–the album debuted at number 2 on the Billboard 200 charts. It also met mostly positive reviews from fans and critics.
It’s rumored that Madonna will appear at the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest, which takes place in Tel Aviv next month. The legendarily campy competition seems like an odd place for Madonna to debut new music from Madame X, but stranger things have happened… like the time she dated Dennis Rodman.