Madonna and Justin Timberlake, “4 Minutes”

Madonna and Justin Timberlake, Madonna has always been accused of being calculating, but she's not even bothering to hide her black math here. Literally anyone could have a top 10 U.S. radio hit with Timberlake and top-shelf production from Timbaland as your back up. "4 Minutes" is the the best crossover pop music that money can buy, with its infectious brassy horns playing over a massive bass line and bhangra beats, combined with killer hooks. Ironically, Madonna is her own worst enemy here, recycling elements from 2005's "Hung Up" (the "tick-tock"s and once again rhyming "hesitating" with "waiting") and loading up the lyrics with Kabbalist euphemisms like "Sometimes I think what I need is a you intervention." Geez, lighten up Madge. Fortunately, Timberlake knows what time it is and throws out B.S. pick-up lines, because, really, with a track like this, no one gives a s–t what anyone's saying. Congratulations on your (likely) number one hit, Madonna, and this, your first single since 2002 to receive high-rotation U.S. radio play — who says money can't buy happiness? (Warner Bros.)

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About Robert J. Ballantyne

Robert J.Ballantyne is a senior editor at Popjournalism and Creative Director at Artsculture.ca. Previously, he was a journalist at the CBC on a number of news programs including the fifth estate, Marketplace and The National. He also worked as a staff writer at the Toronto Star.

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