- Tracy Heck
Madonna takes on gun control in powerful new video
Madonna has released the fourth video from her fourteenth studio album, Madame X.
Directed by long-time collaborator Jonas Åkerlund, "God Control" is a graphic representation of the consequences of gun violence and is a call to arms with the singer urging everyone to "wake up" and take a stand.
The video and song draw heavily from the disco era, while presenting a commentary on current politics. The scene is evocative of the 2016 Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting, which left 49 dead.
The video opens with a warning for viewers before breaking into the shooting scene and evolving backwards throughout the evening as the club goers dance and have a great time. As it moves on, it shows Madonna getting ready for a evening out, arriving at the club, being held up at gunpoint for her jewelry and letting loose on the dance floor.
Throughout the 8-minute statement, "Madame X" is seen typing out the haunting lyrics to the track. The video ends with a request to support organizations fighting for gun safety legislation and statistics on the toll of gun violence. The words "No one is safe" and "Gun control. Now," is the last thing seen.
"God Control" is not the first release from the album to take a stance on gun violence. "I Rise" features a sample from Parkland, Florida student Emma Gonzalez, who survived the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
Madame X is a swirling mix of creative influences that Madonna was exposed to while living in Lisbon, Portugal over the last few years.
Dance Hall, latin music, pop, dance and even hip hop all swirl together to create a memorable 15-track album that has echoes of her Ray of Light and American Life albums while also bringing something entirely new to the table.
Singing in Portuguese, Spanish and English, Madonna collaborated on Madame X with longtime producer Mirwais, as well as with producers Mike Dean and Diplo, among others. The album features collaborations with Maluma, Quavo, Swae Lee and Anitta.
This week, Madame X is number one on the Billboard 200 with 95,000 units sold and Madonna has re-entered the Billboard Artist 100 at No. 1 to become the top musical act in the U.S. for the first time since the chart's launch in 2014.
Madonna will be spending the Fall on her Madame X Tour playing long stands at intimate venues across the U.S. and Europe.