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Old 03-23-2013, 10:26 AM   #11 (permalink)
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My opinion is that both Frank Ocean and JT are stronger artists. They understand the music better; know when to let it breathe, have incredibly versatile vocal ranges and I know this may seem shallow given the technological advancements since the days of Inversions but the production is so much smoother, well rounded and layered.

There's no doubt MJ and Wonder were great 'singers' but as artists I find them to be rather one dimensional compared with JT and Frank who have better and more diverse ranges and aren't prone to the filler that Stevie and MJ put on some of their albums because they lacked the depth to keep up the standard throughout.

Besides just because an album is 20/30 years older than another, doesn't make it better. Hence the nostalgia comment I made.
How old or new an album really has nothing to do with it: Thriller and Off The Wall are incredible albums from both a production and engineering standpoint: that the songs aren't half-bad either is merely icing on the cake. Lets be honest here too: your preference for Ocean and JT has nothing to do with the quality of the music itself (because that's a subjective observation to begin with), and whilst I can agree with you that the majority of MJ's post-Thriller output lacks punch, any musician out there would give an arm, a leg and even a kidney to cut even ONE album in their life half as good as MJ's classic output.

I'm arguing in favor of merit and context here. You need to take into consideration that MJ had the help of gods like drummer Jeff Porcaro and Quincy Jones to get the best out of his material, and neither Ocean or JT are working with anyone as good as pros like them. The whole "80's" sound aside, Thriller would have been a monstrous record in any decade just from the lineup alone: its almost as if it were destined to be an album that superseded its own potential on the commercial front....and its a feat nobody will be able to replicate for centuries at this rate. It is the world's first and only example that an album could be interesting, progressive and intricately crafted and still smash the Beatles catalogue to smithereens on the sales front in mere weeks.
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Old 03-23-2013, 10:40 AM   #12 (permalink)
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The production was one of the reasons. I pointed out it was perhaps shallow as the technological advancements utilized by Ocean and JT were unavailable when Stevie and Wacko Jacko were recording, although I feel they wouldn't have been used to their fullest if they had. MJ especially strikes me as someone who probably let others plot his music for him in terms of composition and song structure.

I genuinely believe both Channel ORANGE and 20/20 are better than Thriller and Inversions respectively, this does not make me wrong. It is my opinion. It is not correct that the latter two are better either. It's not that I prefer the former because they are newer I prefer them to the reasons outlined in my first post.

Honestly, I don't know how those two people you mentioned are. I just know what sounds slicker, more well rounded and more complete to me as an album and it isn't Thriller. I've always felt of Thriller as being incredibly gimmicky, I appreciate MJ as an entertainer and recognize the impact he's had but as a musician, when he wasn't shrouding himself in gimmicks - he was incredibly weak.

Wonder was obviously different. He was a singer who was all about the music, but I felt he lacked the charisma and intrigue to make his music interesting. It may seem like a double edged sword, MJ had too much character, Wonder had too little but they both struggled with the balance. That's why I feel MJ is too contrived and Wonder is just pretty dull. I have the same issue with Wonder as I do with Marvin Gaye. I appreciate the music, but it's just not that interesting to me. What you hear on the surface is all there is, Frank Ocean and JT are more like icebergs where there's much more going on then what one would immediately hear.
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Old 03-23-2013, 10:44 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Well, the weird thing about MJ is that he was a pretty messed up human being on the whole...but the second you put him into a recording studio or got him on stage, he became a razor sharp, incredibly focused individual. He wrote a lot of his own material, but what was interesting was how good his instincts were about songs others would write for him as well. Everyone was always in awe of him apparently.

Anyway, I agree with you for the most part by the way, but I'd definitely recommend people to go watch a documentary or two about the making of Thriller: pretty fascinating stuff all n' all.
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Old 03-23-2013, 11:07 AM   #14 (permalink)
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yeah, I mean I appreciate Thriller as an entertainment spectacle and the impact it has had on the music industry. The video for the title track really brought home the importance of music videos and MJ is as revered as a dancer as he is a singer which is saying something about the way he was able to conduct himself as an entertainer.
I went through a stage when I was younger of listening to a lot of MJ, but his music lacked a great substance to keep my intrigue for a sustained period of time. I feel like I almost outgrew MJ when I heard other things.

But, in my opinion from a strictly musical standpoint the 20/20 Experience & Channel ORANGE are superior to Thriller.
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Old 03-23-2013, 03:35 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I personally would have no interest whatever in Timberlake's music but I must congratulate you miss poptart on one of the most engaging, funny, fresh and enjoyable reviews I've read in a long time. Your enthusiasm for the music comes through solidly, and the review positively crackled with energy and fun. I love the idea of you finally coming across a track you can dance to and going mad dancing.

You should think about starting a journal. I'm serious.
Well done.
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Old 03-24-2013, 08:45 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I liked JT's first single. I remember he said he was going solo and everyone thought it was going to be crap and it was actually very good
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Old 03-25-2013, 02:51 AM   #17 (permalink)
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You know, its hard for me to dislike The 20/20 Experience when its obvious that Justin really wanted to give mainstream R&B a nice shakedown and remind the world that music that actually tries is more interesting in the long-run than yet another record that was designed for the sole purpose of filling up slots on Top 40 radio.
Well put. I think it's hard for me to dislike the album for the same reason. He really doesn't have anything to lose nowadays, and I like that he's sort of going in his own direction.

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The 20/20 Experience, unfortunately, feels almost as if its forcing itself at times. Timberlake needs to go take a few leaves out of the classic 80's approach to R&B or go listen to some razor sharp modern prog. rock for future deep-cut endeavor inspiration methinks.
Hahah if only. Where do you think Timbaland got the inspiration for FutureSex/LoveSounds?

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That being said, great review...
Thanks! I guess I should try to review albums as a whole instead of track-by-track, but it's hard for me to take away a cohesive idea about a whole album, or compare tracks to one another within the context of it. In any case, thanks for reading.

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...I enjoyed the album on the whole: I just don't think it's going to make everyone's AOTY list come December.
Yeah, agreed. Given that I probably listen to five or six new albums per year (hahahaha), it might make mine anyway.
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Old 03-25-2013, 02:55 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I personally would have no interest whatever in Timberlake's music but I must congratulate you miss poptart on one of the most engaging, funny, fresh and enjoyable reviews I've read in a long time. Your enthusiasm for the music comes through solidly, and the review positively crackled with energy and fun. I love the idea of you finally coming across a track you can dance to and going mad dancing.

You should think about starting a journal. I'm serious.
Well done.
:3 Awww, thanks. I would start a journal but I have two blogs and they occupy most of my spare writing time. On my blogs I only tend to review single songs, so I'm excited to exercise my album reviewing skills here on MB. Thanks for the encouragement!
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:27 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Just quickly looked at your blog, miss p (VVV I think) and wow was I impressed! I knew you were a great writer and that proved it. The sex stuff threw me initially, being an old Irish prude, but the stuff where you take on America's attitudes to foreigners is pure gold! When I have time I'll be reading more, and I urge others to head that way too (links in the lady's sig) and take a look.

Excellent job.
Cool colour scheme, too!
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:35 PM   #20 (permalink)
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This album is up to 4.5/5 for me. Absolutely love near enough every aspect of it. If only JT was less corny with his lyrics.
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