You can take all those Madonna comparisons and throw them out the window of your Ford F-150 truck, because on Thursday night Lady Gaga released a new version of her global smash "Born This Way" that featured a totally unexpected spin.
After tweeting to her Little Monsters that she was preparing to release "Born This Way (The Country Road Version)," Mother Monster dropped the tune at midnight PT on Friday (March 25) via her Twitter account ... and it did not disappoint.
The new rendition of the hit opens with ominous, swirling guitars and then introduces a fuzzed-out slide guitar and harmonica wheeze, with all of the thumping disco beats replaced by restrained brush drumming and a more laid-back vibe. Once it kicks into the first chorus, the song continues to take its time, choogling along on live-sounding, laconic drumming and lots of soulful harmonica.
Just before the three-minute mark, Gaga mixes in some new lyrics, drawling, "If I wanna make it country, baby, then it's OK, cuz I was born, I was born, I was born this way," over picked mandolin. "From London, Paris, Japan back to USA/ I was born on the road, I was born to be brave," she adds, as the song breaks into full-on country-rock mode reminiscent of late-period Bon Jovi in the final minute.
Meanwhile, the original, non-boot-scooting version of "BTW" notched its sixth week in a row at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts this week, which is what Gaga said prompted her to drop the surprise remake on her fans.
Earlier this week, Gaga revealed that she's almost done recording her Born This Way album, telling fans via Twitter, "In Nebraska, finishing up record today ... I'm so proud of the album: I keep dancing+drinking: metal/techno rock journey of a woman on the run."
Plans are now being worked up for the tour in support of Born This Way (due out May 23) and Gaga's first swing at directing, a collaboration with her creative director, Laurieann Gibson, on the video for the album's upcoming second single, "Judas."
What do you think of Gaga's twanged-up version of "Born This Way"? Share your opinions in the comments.