51 of 57 people found the following review helpful
Better than could ever have been hoped. A genuine reminder of the genius of Michael Jackson,
This review is from: Xscape (Audio CD)
If you have ever liked Michael Jackson's music then this album is simply a must purchase, especially in the deluxe format as the originals are in most cases far better than anything Timberland, Dark Child or Rodney Jerkins can remix.
The opener "Love Never Felt So Good" is a classic, feel good Jackson soul ballad. It is a beautiful song that could have easily been added to "Off the Wall" or "Thriller" as a single, it is that strong.
Another gem is "Loving you" which in remixed form on the standard album sounds well done as an up-tempo dance up and in the context of the album really injects some pace. However Michael's synth driven original is a slow paced "Bad" era ballad that is one the most uplifting, touching songs he has ever written. It is also quite personal and written in the first person, which is actually quite rare for any Jackson song post Bad, as lyrics started to become more impersonal and paranoid.
Chicago is a smooth modern take on the Liberian Girl theme from Bad but with less of the magical visceral fantasy imagery that astounded much of his best work. Another song that struggles for this reason is "Do You Know Where Your Children Are" which is more of a statement of concern than a well crafted piece of pop.
Blue Gangsta and A Place with No Name (especially the acoustic, western inspired deluxe original version) are other high points in a album that is successful on so many levels. Considering how it has been constructed with many different producers over such a protracted time frame it is incredible how complete and diverse it actually feels. The downside to this album is that I agree it is overproduced in some places and many of the best versions of these songs are the original versions that are only available in the deluxe package.
There is also a stark, sad reminder that Michael's final years musically were quite dark and paranoid, lacking the joy of his earlier work. The best, early songs on this package are a wonderful reminder at how beautiful Michael could sing and write feel good music. It is fantastic that we have some new songs from this era to enjoy, with some surprisingly strong ones from the 90s thrown in.
My reason for five stars is because although far from his finest ever work, this is still a superb collection of songs and in deluxe form, gives us at least 2 songs that are up-to standard of his greatest classics. It is more enjoyable than any album since Dangerous and better than any music from his modern day pretenders Timberlake et al. Michael may be gone, but this album is so good he can still be called today's King of Pop not just in the history books.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 14 May 2014 14:00:01 BDT
Scarlet Jupiter says:
Simply put, nicely said. I enjoy the "new" songs but they'd rather not release anything else, as I say on my review. MJ lives on!!
Posted on 24 May 2014 21:38:03 BDT
i really do love a place with no name and esp. slave to the rhythm. and over on billboard's site, the album debuted @ #1 in the u.k.!! that's fantastic!! here in america, it debuted @ #2 and prob. will be @ #3 this week :).
In reply to an earlier post on 10 Jun 2014 18:53:32 BDT
Morty Moose says:
You mention ' Deluxe format' a couple of times....what do you mean? Are you still talking about this particular album (cd)?
In reply to an earlier post on 10 Jun 2014 21:56:12 BDT
Tom Hughes says:
The deluxe format is a 2 disc version also available that is the same as the single disc album but includes an extra CD of the same songs only they are the originals devised by the original production team when Michael was alive. Rather than the "contemporised" ones created by Rodney Jerkins etc
In reply to an earlier post on 10 Jun 2014 23:20:00 BDT
Last edited by the author on 11 Jun 2014 00:19:00 BDT
Morty Moose says:
Ohhhhh.... I see.
PS. Listened to the samples of this deluxe album, and couldn't help myself.... I've just bought it! I wasn't intending to buy this album, but it is soooo good! Thanks for helping me to spend money I shouldn't! lol
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