Britney Spears, Danja & More Reflect On 10 Years Of ‘Blackout’

Flashback: Britney Spears' 'Criminal'
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The 10 year anniversary of Blackout is imminent (mark October 25 in your calendars!) and Fader gets a head start on the inevitable outpouring of retrospectives by rounding up a series of fascinating quotes from Britney Spears and her collaborators. “Blackout was the first time I worked with [producer] Danja, and he gave me the opportunity and freedom to work with more urban sounds and influences,” the pop princess says of her most influential album. “It really inspired me! I also got the chance to sing more and stretch my voice in ways I hadn’t done before.”

“The magic of Blackout was actually pretty simple,” she continued. “It just wasn’t so thought out. I just did what I felt and it worked. Sometimes less is more I guess.” Danja reveals the album’s iconic electro-pop sound was inspired by clubbing in Miami. “I didn’t think about ‘pop music’ while creating Blackout,” he reveals. “I was into dance music and EDM at the time, but it wasn’t mainstream yet. I was just going to a club in Miami a couple of times to see the atmosphere. Everyone was bouncing around to Benny Benassi’s ‘Satisfaction’ and Tiesto, literally in a trance.”

Songwriter Keri Hilson also shares some insights about Britney’s involvement (or lack thereof). “The songs that we created [‘Gimme More,’ ‘Break the Ice,’ ‘Perfect Lover,’ ‘Outta This World’] were very much part of a time where we would get very little of Britney,” she says. “She did not write on any of the songs that we did — we would create, and I would lay a demo while we awaited her arrival. I’m on the background of everything that we did, just because she wanted to focus on her delivery and her lead vocal.”

“When we played her my demo of ‘Break the Ice,’ she didn’t want to do the background,” Keri continues. “Honestly, I think she said something like, ‘it sounds like me anyway.’ Danja remembers it differently. “Throughout the whole process, she was very present, attentive, and interactive,” he says. “She was one of the easiest people to get things done with — she would sit there and sing no matter how many times we had her do it over, and just get it done.” Read the full piece, including comments from Charli XCX and Julia Michaels, over at Fader.

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