Justin Timberlakes upcoming album, The 20/20 Experience due for release Tuesday will attempt to live up to the hype thats been built up by twenty-somethings who adored his curly, highlighted afro days in N Sync.
Opening up with an orchestral, and almost whimsical, introduction to Pusher Love Girl, Timberlake deals a hand of what most of thealbum will entail a jazzy, adult version of his notoriously sultry R&B sound.
The song, which he first performed at the Grammy Awards, is much slower than Timberlake originally exhibited for his peers, and dances with time travel mixing vintage sounds withelectronic beats andmuffled rap byTimberlake toward the end of the extended song.
The theme of morphing new with old sets the tone for the rest of the album, carrying into the debut single Suit and Tie.
Days before Timberlakes first release since 2006, multiple media outlets gavedifferent theories of why Timberlake is out of touch, or why he is trying to be a part of an era of music which he missed the boat into.
Some say he was replaced by a newJustin Bieber, that is but the mostrealistic theory, is that Timberlake, now 32 years old and married, has entered a new phase in his own life and career, thus producing a new sound to accommodate his majorlife changes.
Once again, Timberlake joins Timbaland, for an exotic-sounding Dont Hold the Wall with an overwhelming amount ofbackground effects and an equally
unnecessary amount of dialogue andrepetition, which lasts longer than seven minutes, like many of the other nine songs on the album.
However, the song drags a bit and seems too busy.
Its evident that Timberlake was trying to channel early-2000s collaborations with Timbaland, but it isnt nearly as magical as it was for the 2006 album FutureSex/LoveSounds.
Leading with a chillingly warm voice over electro-pop synthesized sounds, Strawberry Bubblegum attempts to do something different, producing a stark contrast between the singers irresistible falsetto for the sexual-innuendo laced verses and intriguing bass vocalist that makescameos throughout the song.
A couple of questionable moves on slow tempo tunes such as Spaceship Coupe feel as if Timberlake istrying a bit too hard torecreate his updatedversion of Prince meets the sex-sells mentality from FutureSex/LoveSounds.
But Timberlake redeems himself with the immediately subsequent That Girl, making use ofbig-band horns to reference his place in thetabloids with his now-wife Jessica Biel.
The albums secondsingle, Mirrors, takes away the new or old, stripping down to whatTimberlake shines with the mid-tempo, soulful and honest music that gave him a lasting solo career away from the boy-band stigma.
Timberlake takes a bold step in Blue Ocean Floor, further releasing the digital beats andcomputerized instruments that most of his music tends to work well with.
Closing the album, the song drifts through a serious setting, with a sound reminiscent of music by singer Sia.
There wont be many different variations of opinion when this album hits stores and digital outlets tomorrow.
Timberlake accomplished what he set out to do. He created enough excitement for this new sound to wrangle in his agingfollowing and has mostly lived up to what many audiences were expecting. Timberlake has relaunched himself, showing listeners that he is the original Justin with an original sound.