Now that the vids are showing up, I will re-post my original response to this match, minus the part about the vids not showing up.
Ray of Light is probably my favorite Madonna album by miles, which is fairly faint praise as I'm no fan. But I do enjoy the production on A. And it's not a bad song at all, just something that ultimately doesn't move me. It's her most eccentric product, but it's still product.
KC is an artist I've always thought had some interesting songs but really didn't escape the twee aspects of the time, and was probably as overproduced for his era as Madonna was for hers, though with more modest aims. That's far from his best song, though. I mean, kudos for not picking "Fable of the Wings," but "Fable of the Wings" is far better than this.
B, I guess, though ultimately I'm voting for the artist. Not an auspicious start.
Two decent songs elevated by the production on one and the arrangement on the other. I think there were better tracks on ROL but the Orbit bleeps and warmth makes A a pleasant reminder of when Madge wasn’t trying too hard. B is a wintry, spectral thing with that Nick Drake fairy dust courtesy of Robert Kirby. The atmosphere of the thing is heady and allows you to overlook some of the more wayward parts of the performance. The coda is wonderful also. Nice opener.
Really generic kinda trip-hop beat on the Madge track, you think she could afford someone to think up new ideas. Seems to be a random phrase in search of a tune, feels something more like Garbage would've done than a Madonna song. Three Inch Nails.
Keith Christmas is a great name for a pub singer, I expected some hard-bitten geordie bloke willing to take on all hecklers. This is more Barclay James Harvest territory, the arrangement desperately trying to make up for the overall dampness of the song. Might have possibly been acceptable without the choir, the strings, and the organ.
Pfft. I'd like to be contrary, and throw Madonna a vote here because it's a much less BCB choice, but it's also a bit rank. Whereas B probably has been less designed by committee, but is still using an orchestra to make mulch.
This is the only period of Madonna I really care for and that's because of William Orbit's shimmering production. This is a good track with a clear Massive Attack influence. The song is suitably moody though lapses close to dirge-like at times. I went through a KC phase a few years ago. He's maybe the most West Coast sounding of the English singer-songwriters. This is a really immersive, expansive track and I love the way it ebbs and flows. Disagree with Hatz, this is a strong selection from his catalogue.
A good match this. My views seem to be outside the general critical consensus in that I think Madonna peaked in her first 2 LPs, and everything since has been a long slow descent, broken only by a few moments of greatness/goodness, but this record was one of those momentary bleeps on the radar. This one has got great feel and still catches my attention nicely. The Christmas record is one I know less well, and after giving it a few listens I've enjoyed it - lovely arrangements especially - but it kind of just floats away on the ether. His voice is one of the weaker element sadly, and doesn't add to the power of the song's sound.
Ray of light was my point of departure from Madge. When she was good, it was all about her and the songs. Getting in a name producer diluted all that. I once owned a Keith Xmas album. Didn't play it any later than 75 or so, but don't think this was on it. It's wet, nbot so much so as the egregious Drake, but in that ballpark. Neither track is of interest, really.