BRITNEY SPEARS: IN THE ZONE

Britney Spears laughs at the thought that she could"ve found time for a break recently. " if you hotline three weeks a hiatus," she said. "I"ve been recording my booty off."

As her forthcoming In the Zone (formerly Get in the Zone) nears completion, the pop star is working her booty overtime, already mapping out plans for remixes galore of her first single, "Me Against the Music," featuring Madonna. The RedZone-produced track has been sent khổng lồ several producers, including Outkast và Madonna mixer Peter Rauhofer.

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"We"ve hooked up , but I"ve learned not khổng lồ talk about my personal life," Britney said of Madonna, laughing. "But basically that song is about just being in a club & being oblivious lớn everyone and just zoning out và just freestyling. And it"s me và that beat."

Spears has been known to hit the thủ đô new york clubs khổng lồ let DJs preview her new songs, and she even performed a surprise nightclub act in Las Vegas earlier this month (see "Britney Romps On Bed, Loses Her Shirt At Surprise Vegas Show"). For the most part, though, the new tunes have been kept tightly under wraps. "My music hasn"t been out," she said. "I"ve been recording the whole time. It"s lượt thích a big giảm giá khuyến mãi for me. It"s my baby."

In her Vegas act, Spears previewed "Breathe on Me," which earned more of the trip-hop comparisons her new work has been getting while also emphasizing the sensuality she"s been hinting at recently. "It"s very vibe-y, trance-y," she said. "<"Breathe on Me"> is basically about being with a guy và not even having khổng lồ really be with each other, but just the intensity and the anxiety between not saying anything. You don"t even have lớn touch me, just breathe on me."

The most erotic song, however, in Spears" new repertoire just might be "Touch of My Hand" (see "Britney Previews LP, Denies Rumors Of "Cry Me A River" Response"). "I think it"s tastefully done," Spears said of the track. "And I think it"s real.

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It"s nice và it"s real. It"s whatever your take is. Some people may think it"s a little much, but that"s where I"m at with my life. ... It"s not freaky freaky, it"s just a little freaky."

Spears has been putting forth a more adult image in print as well, posing nude for a new york Times Magazine fashion spread và appearing topless in Elle UK & Rolling Stone. The upcoming issue of Esquire promises to lớn be equally racy, with a teaser in this month"s issue that she"ll be "wearing nothing more than her smile."

"As far as photo shoots go, W, Rolling Stone, whatever, the pictures are really sexy," she said, "but actually, when I did the photo shoots, I was sometimes in ball gowns & nice dresses, & of course they used the pictures where I"m half nude. ... The one , that was my first time ever khổng lồ be on the cover of a magazine & not have my đứng đầu on.

"People like the pictures, I lượt thích the pictures, but I hate the interview," she continued. " was so rude, I almost got up và left. He made me come across in such a horrible light. You suck, reporter! & I"m not afraid lớn say that, because he was really wrong. He hurt my feelings. & I wouldn"t even bring it up because I"m giving him my energy & he doesn"t deserve my energy. I went on a rampage. Sorry about that."

Going on a rampage — that, too, is part of the new, more adult Britney. "I know lớn speak up more," she said, "and I know what I want more. There"s so much going on in my world, behind the music, you have to lớn be more involved."

A video shoot for "Me Against the Music" is slated for early October in New York, and the đoạn phim is set to premiere October 13 on "Making the Video." In the Zone drops November 18.