The 20/20 Experience
REVIEW SIMON COLLINS
Justin Timberlake is a pretty good actor, which is fine in Hollywood but not so great in the music business, where some level of genuine connection with the songs is necessary.
On his third solo album, another collaboration with super-producer Timbaland, JT plays the lover-lover man, a tuxedo-clad Casanova declaring that he is addicted to his Pusher Lover Girl, who tastes like strawberry bubblegum. Ewwww!
The latter song's infantile lyrics sound like Bill Shakespeare next to Spaceship Coupe: "Hop in my spaceship coupe/There's only room for two, me and you/And with the top down, we'll cruise around, land and make love on the moon".
Delivering those lines with a straight face is surely Oscar worthy. Timbaland's crisp retro-futuristic production on the single Suit & Tie and the Afrobeat-inspired Don't Hold the Wall elevates The 20/20 Experience beyond a complete stinker. The fictional doo-wop outfit JT and the Tennessee Kids deliver the asinine That Girl, while Let the Groove In is a dance-hall pastiche.The best songs on poptastic 2002 debut Justified were produced by the Neptunes, and Timbaland's busy soundscapes tend to overwhelm Timberlake, who comes across as something of a cheese-ball. Stick to acting, JT, and leave this material to Bruno Mars, who may not get the sexy ladies like you do in real life, but certainly is more believable in the role.
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