Justin Timberlake – The 20/20 Experience – Album Review
Justin Timberlake is back in action after being away for a while. Produced by Timberlake, Timbaland, and new collaborator J-Roc, The 20/20 Experience provides a soulful and R&B pop sound that can only be explained as smooth and easy to listen to. There are however a couple of redundant pitfalls that may deter some fans from showing the required interest to make this album a huge success as compared to “FutureSex/LoveSounds” and “Justified”.
It is hard to separate the fact that with a long absence, especially being a successful artist, there is some expectations to live up to. Fans and the media expect fresh and promising music with the usual 21 questions why the new album took so long.
Timberlake has always been around with the odd collaboration or two however we never had any news of a new album coming down the line.
His acting career in the meantime has taken flight and to be fair I am sure much of his time was devoted to his new Hollywood persona and stunning wife, Jessica Biel. Even though he enjoyed some success on the silver screen, on can still not dismiss the fact that JT is considered the “come-back kid” of 2013.
Timberlake’s debut song on the new album has not impressed everyone from the get-go however with time it received the popularity it deserves. The wide range of string, brass, keyboard and percussion instruments has provided a more rounded off and mature sound to the final product. There is however a strong reach that still hints to the sound that made the two previous albums so successful.
Something else to note is the average song duration is approximately 7 min, mostly slow songs I might add. This is a very unorthodox approach to the usual snap your finger Pop/R&B songs we are so accustomed to. Unless we start referring to the long ass songs R.Kelly use to make. I am definitely not comparing JT with R.Kelly however I am making reference to how annoying it was to listen to his R&B songs that use to last forever…..perhaps the reason why Pop/R&B songs has evolved to short, and to the point, catchy money makers.
Highlight tracks: “Dress on,” “Pusher Love Girl,” “Suit & Tie,” “That Girl,” “Tunnel Vision” and “Mirrors.”
Even though the album is difficult to compare to the previous chart toppers in some instances, there are still many reasons to spend your hard earned cash to buy this album. There is a sense that JT is slowly moving in a new direction however he still managed to include some old tricks, with some help from his famous side kick Timberland. One can almost hear the joys of his music and his happy marriage brought together in one sitting. This is most definitely the best recent innovations in R&B and I am sure many others would agree….or maybe not.
I did however feel the premise of the album was a bit confusing, a conflict between the old style he is very well known for, and the new mature approach that will set the album apart from the old. That being said, I think this one is a double thumbs up. According to new reports, Justin Timberlake is set to release volume 2 of his 20/20 Experience album in November.
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1. “Pusher Love Girl” (8:02)
2. “Suit & Tie” (ft. Jay-Z) (5:28)
3. “Don’t Hold the Wall” (ft. Timbaland) (7:11)
4. “Strawberry Bubblegum” (8:00)
5. “Tunnel Vision” (6:47)
6. “Spaceship Coupe” (7:17)
7. “That Girl” (4:48)
8. “Let the Groove Get In” (7:12)
9. “Mirrors” (8:04)
10. “Blue Ocean Floor” (7:19)