After six long years, Christina Aguilera’s new album, Liberation, has arrived.

After six long years, Christina Aguilera’s new album, Liberation, has arrived.

 

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A lot has changed since Xtina released Lotus in 2012. Streaming dominates how listeners consume music, and Liberation is the singer’s first release in a world where artists no longer depend on physical album sales. That’s unfamiliar, scary territory for someone like Christina, who shot to fame in the bubble gum pop music boom. Over the years, Xtina spaced out her album releases, and that’s not something most can get away with anymore. Not even legends like her, and she’s having a difficult time adapting to the age of sales plus streaming.

 

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Case in point? Her lead Liberation release, “Fall In Line,” featuring Demi Lovato, failed to crack the Hot 100. It debuted at No. 101 (or, No. 1 on Billboard’s Bubbling Under chart). Her other releases, including “Accelerate,” featuring Ty Dolla $ign and 2 Chainz, “Twice” and “Like I Do” with GoldLink, didn’t make much of a dent chart-wise, either. In my opinion, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Charts and numbers based off of streaming is an entirely different animal, and doesn’t necessarily equate to success. I think Fighters should let go of chart success and enjoy Xtina’s music for what it is (after my initial listen of the album, it’s really very good).

Liberation is about giving “back to that little girl who just wants to be inspired again by truth and that sense of passion for music and singing and feeling free and alive again,” Xtina said in the album trailer. “I’ve stepped so far away from that little girl, and if that means going away for a little while and figuring out who you are again and what you have to say, then that’s what you need to do.”

The wait was long, but she won’t let it happen again. X told Paper she has no plans to “take a long break.”

“After this album, I’m back in my artist mode. I don’t want to let that go again.”

 

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Stream Liberation, and read Xtina’s song descriptions for several of the standout tracks, below (available at midnight EST):


 

Track 2 & 3: “Searching For Maria” / “Maria” – The intro vocal to the album is an homage to a side of myself I lost touch with for a number of years. “Searching For Maria” is a reference to one of my favorite films The Sound of Music – in which the character of Maria, an irrepressible free spirit, struggles to find herself and her freedom. The song “Maria” is my personal account of that journey, and features a sample of an old Jackson 5 song…. #LIBERATION is out Friday. Pre-order here: christinaaguilera.com

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Track 4: “Sick of Sittin’” – Inspired with a Janis Joplin spirit, SoS is an internal wake up call to anyone who may feel stuck in a confined space or stagnant energy within the means of starting to live someone else’s dream and not your own true intention. Having to play by someone else’s rules & ideals of who you should be, and your worth degraded, shamed and harassed behind the scenes. To say no to the cliché predictable money-making machine and create something that feels authentic, genuine & real…. getting back to your soul’s integrity and purpose- desiring to shake up the “formulaic system”, and desire a more meaningful, truthful existence— Thank you to the incredible @anderson._paak for being a fellow truth-seeker and bringing out the raw & realness on this I’d been missing for so long. I encourage any fighter/ survivor to be unafraid to go against the grain and search for your own true version of you! Let loose, be free…. #LIBERATION is out Friday. Pre-order link in bio

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Track 5: Dreamers – This interlude is an intro to ‘Fall In Line,’ and includes a diverse group of young girls sharing mantras of empowerment, and saying what they want to be when they grow up. It sets a tone of returning to the youthful innocence and feeling of limitless possibility that #Liberation is all about. Shout out to Summer Rain for lending her voice to this <3

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Track 7: “Right Moves” feat. Keida & Shenseea – #Liberation isn’t all strain and strife…. You can’t serve Xtina without a dash of owning your sensuality…. There are a few tracks that are less about the struggle to liberate, and more about the liberation that comes from slipping into something a little more comfortable and enjoying yourself. This is one of those vibes. christinaaguilera.com

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Track 9: Deserve – The lyrics say it best… “Sometimes I don’t think I deserve you, So I say some f*ed up **** just to hurt you, But you know I do it all ‘cause I love you, So baby tell me I’m the one that deserves you.” All my love to @MNEK & @JuliaMichaels for this one ?

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Track 13: “Pipe” – Love vibing out to this one— Had so much fun exploring different textures & tones in my voice stylistically. Tapping into a certain kind of flow and flirtation. This song is both wordplay and foreplay. Much ? to @taylaparx for killin it. And so excited for a very special guest feature by XNDA ??

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