Review: Justin Timberlake – The 20/20 Experience

Justin Timberlake is many things: Britney’s ex, a former N*Synch-er and a rather mediocre actor. He is also, perhaps one of the most genre-dividing artists in the music industry. Whether you prefer pop, rock or hip-hop, Justin Timberlake has something to suit all tastes. Essentially, everyone from you to your Granny loves him and most of the world has forgotten about that Afro.

The 20/20 Experience is the long awaited follow-up to the sleek Timbaland-produced FutureSex/LoveSounds. It has been six and a half years since Timberlake stepped in front of a microphone and recorded his own material, and questions were being asked as to whether or not he would ever return to the stratospheric heights reached in 2006.

If anything, this is the album to do just that. From the outset, it is clear that Timberlake called in the big guns to produce and feature on this comeback. Jazzy and sometimes cheesy, songs such as ‘Suit and Tie’ take on a rather vintage feel. However, Timberlake is at his strongest when creating sultry urban beats, and songs such as ‘Tunnel Vision’ and ‘Mirrors’ are the most familiar to old skool Timbo.

The album is certainly ambitious, in a Michael Jackson/Prince kind of way, with most of the songs stretching over the six-minute mark. Unsurprisingly, some of the songs are undeservedly stretched, and at times, it feels like the album is starting to lag slightly. That said, Bieber should be scared. There’s a cooler Justin in town.

Rating: 4/5

Eimear Shannon

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