The Confessions Tour is the second live album by American singer and songwriter Madonna. It was released on January 26, 2007, by Warner Bros. Records. Directed by Jonas Åkerlund, the album chronicles Madonna's 2006 Confessions Tour and includes the full version of the television broadcast special The Confessions Tour: Live from London. It was recorded at Wembley Arena during the London dates of the tour, and was released in both CD and DVD format. The DVD contains the entire concert and the CD includes thirteen live songs only. The album became the first release from Semtex Films, a production company founded by Madonna in 2006.
The Confessions Tour received generally positive reviews from contemporary critics and won the Best Long Form Music Video category at the 50th Grammy Awards. The album reached number one on the official charts in Belgium (Wallonia), Czech Republic, Hungary, Greece, Italy, Mexico, Portugal and Spain and the top-five in most musical markets. It received moderate success in her native country, peaking at number fifteen on the U.S. Billboard 200 albums chart. The DVD reached the top of the video charts in most of the countries it charted, including Australia, Italy, Spain and the United States. Commercially, The Confessions Tour has sold more than 1 million copies worldwide.
Following the 2006 live release I'm Going to Tell You a Secret, Madonna released her second live album, The Confessions Tour. The album was recorded at Wembley Arena on August 15 and 16, 2006, during the London stop of her 2006 Confessions Tour, which was promoting her 2005 studio album Confessions on a Dance Floor. It was the first release from her new production company, Semtex Films and was released in both DVD and CD formats, capturing the tour as directed by Jonas Åkerlund. The DVD release consists of the full twenty-one song set list of the tour, while the CD captures thirteen highlights from the same. The tour was first shown on NBC during the Thanksgiving of 2006. This broadcast was edited, cutting the likes of "Paradise (Not For Me)" and heavily editing the performance of "Live to Tell". Madonna's performance of the latter, while hanging from a glass embellished crucifix and wearing a crown made of thorns on her head, faced strong reaction from the media and religious groups. Asian media and services company Fridae reported that the album was banned in Singapore, Malaysia and parts of East Asia, because of the inclusion of the performances in the DVD.
Stephen Thomas Erlewine from AllMusic felt that the CD version of the album was "not all that much fun to hear, even if the reinterpretations of the 20-year-old hits are interesting. The DVD doesn't feel as cold thanks entirely to the pizzazz of the visuals and the determined efficiency of the show, but even so, this is primarily of interest to the diehards who don't mind purchasing another live CD/DVD set just a year after the first." Ed Gonzalez from Slant Magazine felt that the concert finale in the album "is a reminder that Madonna's music need not be motivated by sex or politics to be good as long as it displays a smidgen of heart and soul." Thomas Inskeep from Stylus Magazine also complimented the finale of the tour. According to him, "[The Confessions Tour] is almost exclusively up-tempo, staged within an inch of its life yet more vivacious than anything she's done in years. Its CD companion is a pared-down 13 tracks taken from the live show, and good God it smokes." However, he felt that the disc loses its momentum during the "Confessions" part, which demonstrates a trio of individuals confessing about their sufferings in life.
Jody Rosen from Entertainment Weekly commented that "Madonna must be seen as well as heard, as the video portion of this CD/DVD proves". Chuck Campbell from Quad-City Times said "the CD is handy, blocking out the DVD's distracting images so fans can concentrate on the music at the heart of Madonna's success". He further describes that the CD/DVD combo "fills in the blanks left by I'm Going to Tell You a Secret".
Tom Young from BBC Music said that he did not see the actual performances on the tour and felt that "some of the magnitude of the performance is lost and the track/scene changes appear needlessly long-winded. [...] As far as live albums go, this is a job well done." Stephen M. Deusner from Pitchfork gave a negative review for the album, stating "Madonna herself is mostly to blame. On stage, she draws from a deep well of amazing pop songs and has the money and power to reinvent this sort of traveling circus. So why not try to break down the wall between performance and audience and hold a gigantic rave? [...] Åkerlund gives you everything you don't want from a concert film: incessant quick cuts that you give you no sense of space or stage, overdubbed music and vocals that give you no sense of performance, and only a few shots of the audience to gauge their excitement." Mini Anthikad-Chhibber The Hindu commented that "Madonna pulls out all stops in this effort turn the world into a dance floor and one just has to doff one's hat to her energy." At the 50th Grammy Awards held on February 10, 2008, at Staples Center in Los Angeles, The Confessions Tour won in the category of Grammy Award for Best Long Form Music Video.
The Confessions Tour has sold more than 1 million copies worldwide. In the United States, the album debuted at number 15 on the Billboard 200 chart with first week sales of 40,000 according to Nielsen SoundScan. In Canada, it debuted at number two on the Canadian Albums Chart. The same position was attained in Argentina, where was certified Gold by the Cámara Argentina de Productores de Fonogramas y Videogramas (CAPIF) for shipments of 20,000 copies. In the same country, the DVD also proved to be successful, ending as one of the best-selling records of 2008 and receiving a Platinum certification in two different formats. The album topped the charts in Mexico, and attained the number four position in Brazil.
Across Europe The Confessions Tour reached the top of the charts in Belgium (Wallonia), Czech Republic, Italy, Portugal and Spain, while reaching the top ten of the rest of the European nations. In the United Kingdom, it debuted at number seven on the UK Albums Chart with 22,227 copies, while in Norway, the album just missed the top ten of the charts. In Czech Republic, the album remained for three weeks at the number-one position and had sold 7,582 units there, as of February 2008. In Netherlands, 35,000 copies of the album were shipped. The commercial success in Europe enabled the album to debut at position two on Billboard's European Top 100 Albums chart, behind Norah Jones' studio album Not Too Late.
^ ab"FIMI Mercato 2007" (in Italian). Federation of the Italian Music Industry (FIMI). January 10, 2008. Archived from the original on March 6, 2012. Retrieved April 20, 2021. Click SCARICA L'ALLEGATO and later dvd2007 for the DVD peak and artisti2007 for the album version