There’s hardly been a media Blackout for Britney Spears’ next album, especially after many of the songs purportedly recorded for it leaked onto the Internet. Just two days ago, Britney’s label, Jive, announced it was moving up the release date by two weeks, from November 13 to October 30, due to those leaks.

But as it turns out, few of those tracks are on Blackout — most of the leaked songs may have been demos — and the album contains some of Spears’ strongest material from these sessions.

“This is Britney’s fifth studio record, and it shows a lot of growth as a performer,” said the singer’s A&R rep, Teresa LaBarbera Whites. “She was very involved in the songs and how they turned out. It’s her magic that turns these songs into what they are.”

Not to mention studio magic. “Piece of Me,” Spears’ mission statement of sorts, finds the singer so vocoder-ized that it’s hard to tell where the real Britney begins and ends — which is part of the point. “I’m Mrs. ‘Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous,’ I’m Mrs. ‘Oh my God, that Britney’s shameless,” she “sings” while dissecting some of her own media coverage. She sings “you want a piece of me?” with moans and sighs, as if she’s offering herself up on a platter, but then she tweaks the idea with a wink, suggesting she’s “bad media karma” and that we’re all going to suffer in the end. “Now are you sure you want a piece of me?”

Click Read More for a detailed description of each track.


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