Ray of Light

Madonna - Ray of Light
Critic Score
Based on 7 reviews
1998 Ratings: #14 / 94
User Score
Based on 524 ratings
1998 Ratings: #10
Liked by 27 people
March 3, 1998 / Release Date
LP / Format
Maverick, Warner Bros. / Label
Pop, Dance / Genres
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madonna.com / Website
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Entertainment Weekly

Throbbing yet meditative, Ray of Light is an adult’s version of dance music, with the dark timbres of Madonna’s nearing-40 voice its resolute center.


Her most mature and restrained album, which is an easy achievement to admire, yet not necessarily an easy one to love.

Rolling Stone

Ray of Light sums up the best we can expect from Madonna at this late date: overly arty, occasionally catchy, confused, secondhand, infuriating and great fun in spite of herself.

Slant Magazine
Orbit's cycles of analog synths and electric guitar licks perfectly supplement the elasticity of Madonna's then-newly-trained vocal chords.
This is quite clearly a record with something to prove.
Ray of Light is Madonna's near-masterpiece and one of my favorite albums of all time. Beyond having some of my favorite Madonna singles ('Frozen,' 'Nothing Really Matters,' the title track), the album is a wonderful reflection on pop's spiritual potential. Time collapses as Madonna considers her past and her future through the sounds of the present; she transforms the dance floor into an asylum from trauma. It is Madonna's most ambitious and personal record, a sparkling jewel at the top of the ... read more
Madonna travelled al around the world looking for different sounds and ended up recording her best album so far, mixing cultures, guitars, keyboards and deep words that can summarize her life and some hidden desires. From fragile but strong songs like Drowned World and The Power Of Good-Bye to you-could-never-have-imagined-Madonna-singing-it songs like Swim and Frozen, you delight yourself getting involved with this discovery of maturity album and rethinking some concepts you use to have them ... read more
[Genre: Dance]

So to answer my question on whether the "dance" music was square dancing or break dancing... I guess it's neither?

Well I can't say I expected that! On Ray Of Light, Madonna incorporates elements of drum and bass and trip hop, and most of the time it sounds great! The combination works surprisingly well with her voice, and while sometimes it can feel dated (and also a tad bit long) it doesn't really matter a lot since I enjoyed this album quite a lot.

favourite ... read more
With Madonna’s third and final album In the 90’s, her seventh overall, almost pushing 40, a mother, and nearly two decades In, comes her most adventurous record yet.

Her unwillingness at this point, to repeat herself, conform, settle or compromise for an already worn, used and played out sound, was what really made her an artist to always have be on the look out for. Like a Pop 90’s Kanye If you may. You just never knew what she would do next.

After having “toned ... read more
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Year End Lists


Track List

  1. Drowned World/Substitute for Love
  2. Swim
  3. Ray of Light
  4. Candy Perfume Girl
  5. Skin
  6. Nothing Really Matters
  7. Sky Fits Heaven
  8. Shanti/Ashtangi
  9. Frozen
  10. The Power of Good-Bye
  11. To Have and Not to Hold
  12. Little Star
  13. Mer Girl  
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Added on: July 7, 2013