There are very few musicians we can count on today. I mean we are living in a world where “Call Me Maybe” was nominated for a Grammy. Lord help us all. I would also just like to take a moment to thank the Lord for Justin Timberlake. No, not because he’s adorable and surprisingly a great actor, but because he has FINALLY come back to reality and given us a new album.
JT says it perfectly in the new single off “The 20/20 Experience” album called “Mirrors”- “and I’ll tell you baby it was easy coming back into you once I figured it out.” Of course it was easy for him to come back! Let me admit that I’m not the biggest pop music person (obviously) and as much as it bums me out that Bon Jovi’s new album came out last week and nobody noticed because they were all waiting for JT’s album, I too understand the beautiful magic that is Justin Timberlake.
At first I was afraid that “The 20/20 Experience” wouldn’t live up to the hype and fan’s expectations, but it completely surpassed my expectations and made me a believer in the power of Timberlake. The last seven years made me forget who Justin really is. I just thought he was Andy Samberg’s better looking, better singing partner in crime with a Christmas present on his…well you know. JT is hilarious and I wish he could host SNL every week, but with this new album he reminds everyone why we took notice of him in the first place and how he has grown into the genius pop master he is.
I don’t use “genius” lightly here either. Every single song on “The 20/20 Experience” is a magic pop journey. And when I say “pop” I don’t mean like Katy Perry or Justin Bieber. I mean what pop music was originally suppose to be times like a million. Every song is entertaining with clever lyrics and even cleverer beats that you can dance to or sit and cry to (and most clock in at over five minutes). When I rushed to Target yesterday to pick up my copy and couldn’t get it into my car’s cd player fast enough I felt tears in my eyes when the first track on the album “Pusher Love Girl” started playing. It starts off sounding like you’re hanging with Willy Wonka and then JT enters with his swag (actual swag Biebs take notice) and compares a love to drug addiction. Not the most original idea (Bon Jovi’s done it), but you’ll never notice.
“Suit & Tie” is there in all its glory, but we already know how good that one is. In “Don’t Hold The Wall” Timberlake asks you to (when he’s singing to a girl I just assume he’s singing directly to me. Right?) dance with him and not stand next to a wall. At first it sounds like a barber shop quartet is playing for you, but then it changes a little so it sounds like a jungle beat. Either way I won’t be standing by any walls anytime soon. There’s even a track called “Strawberry Bubblegum,” which just gives me a good laugh.”Tunnel Vision,” “Blue Ocean Floor,” and “Spaceship Coupe” are intense and classy at the same time. Most of the tracks make me imagine JT singing in a “Great Gatsby” style nightclub. I’d like to think Jay and Justin would be friends.
“That Girl” is styled like a Memphis jazz concert. JT’s in love with that girl (again probably me. Sorry Jessica.) and he’s got a group of backup singers that croon adorably in the background. All music should have backup singers crooning in the background. Another track, “Let The Groove Get In” is a fast and salsa-like jam where Timberlake yells at you to start shaking “like you’ve got nothing to loose.” Who wouldn’t listen to him? I mean really. Then there’s of course his epic love anthem “Mirrors.” It’s pretty cheesy to compare a girl to shining like a mirror, but I’ll let it slide. At over eight minutes long (They will unfortunately never play all of it on the radio) “Mirrors” is Timberlake’s new smash. There’s no way you can’t love this song. I could tear up again every time I hear it. That’s a powerful song.
If you got the deluxe version of the album you were graced with two other tracks “Dress On” where JT keeps asking why you still got your dress on (Enough said) and “Body Count,” which kind of sounds like a Ricky Martin song when it starts off, but it luckily turns into another fabulous song.
Verdict? “The 20/20 Experience” was well worth the seven year wait and makes me believe in pop music again. If Justin Timberlake keeps making music I will be happy and I’m guessing the rest of the world would agree. Not every generation is graced with the presence of a singer, songwriter, actor, comedian, business dude as cool, sweet, and good at what he does like Justin Timberlake. I think it was pretty easy to welcome him back.