The Madonna renaissance is in full swing. Today the pop icon released her first music video in four years: the visual for “Medellín,” the lead single from her upcoming album Madame X. As you can expect, it is wild. In the clip, Madonna does everything from sucking her own toes to getting married to Colombian reggaeton singer Maluma, who guests on the track. All the while, Madonna shows off an impressive array of eye patches — no explanation necessary.
The Diana Kunst and Mau Morgó-directed video begins with “Like a Prayer” vibes. At the beginning, Madonna prays in a church, the act of which doubles as a meditation on resistance and optimism in the face of loss and pain. “Dear god,” Madonna says, “How could I trust anyone after years of disappointment and betrayal? How could I not want to run away again and again? Escape. I will never be what society expects me to be. I’ve seen too much. I cannot turn back. I have been kidnapped, tortured, humiliated and abused. In the end I still have hope. I still believe in the goodness of humans. Thank god for nature.”
That monologue, however, has little bearing on the rest of the video, which plays out like a fantasy with Malum using a riding crop on Madonna and, later, taking off the garter she wears with a white wedding dress and matching cowboy hat. The pair’s chemistry comes across equally in the video and song.
As for the cowboy hat, it’s a fitting nod to her 2000 Music album, where she wears one on the cover. Sonically, the reference is also apt since the producer of that seminal album also shaped the sound of Madonna’s new one, which is her followup to 2015’s Rebel Heart. Madonna has been teasing her new collaborations with Mirwais on Instagram, throughout the recording process, with help from her daughter Estere.
Other collaborators Madonna has been working with on Madame X include Rae Sremmurd’s Swae Lee, Migos’ Quavo, and Brazilian superstar Anitta. The album is out June 14, which means that it’s just a matter of time before Madonna becomes once again inescapable.