First impressions: Justin Timberlake's '20/20 Experience'
March 12th, 2013
03:19 PM ET

First impressions: Justin Timberlake's '20/20 Experience'

Justin Timberlake made us wait almost seven years before releasing a new album, and now that he has our attention, he's going to take his time.

His 10-track, roughly 70-minute record, "The 20/20 Experience," was made available as a free stream on iTunes Monday night, a week ahead of its official release date.

The first impression reviews haven't deemed it a perfect disc, but the resounding response is positive. Mr. Timberlake can certainly feel good about his much anticipated return.

The 32-year-old is in a different place from his last album, "FutureSex/LoveSounds," as he's not only older but now a married man. MTV picked up on some potential nods to his new bride, Jessica Biel, including on the addictive opening track "Pusher Love Girl."

"If you choose to believe that the majority of its 70 minutes are inspired by his wife, actress Jessica Biel, then two things immediately spring to mind," MTV says. "One, she must be exhausted, and two, Justin really enjoys being married."

But overall, the disc is representative of a more adult and dapper musician. "It is a tremendous triumph, an artfully anachronistic effort from Timberlake that eschews just about every preconceived notion of popular music in 2013 ... and confidently carves out its own niche. It's part Frank Sinatra, part Frank Ocean, and it plays out gradually, languidly, as if JT and Timbaland never want the party to end," MTV writes.

Rolling Stone agrees, calling Timberlake's newest album "the biggest pop event of 2013 so far,  but it's not quite a pop album. Its sense of musical space-time is more elastic and sprawling than anything on radio: The 10 tracks average seven minutes; songs unfurl into vamps, abruptly change keys, pile on unexpected beats and harmonies. The music is catchy, but the emphasis is on rhythm and flow."

Finding that it has more in common with an offering from Maxwell or D'Angelo than Justin Bieber or Usher, RS adds that "'The 20/20 Experience' may test the patience of fans expecting immediate gratification."

Entertainment Weekly, perhaps, was looking for more immediacy with their "20/20 Experience."

"There’s ultimately not enough showbiz razzle-dazzle here," EW's review says. "The songs are a little too slow, too long, too lacking in the flashy tap-dance energy that made him a giant solo success when he was 23. Maybe he wants to be the young Frank Sinatra. But for now, he’ll have to settle for being a slightly older JT."

Have you had a listen to "The 20/20 Experience"? If so, what'd you think?

Filed under: Justin Timberlake • Music

soundoff (32 Responses)

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    November 6, 2013 at 3:49 am | Report abuse |
  2. DownSideofFame

    The offer is real...a true deal...Let's talk...
    Your people. &. Mine. ....THE OFFER STANDS

    March 16, 2013 at 6:35 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Justine gets my movie..


    March 16, 2013 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  4. carl

    he stole this album cover concept from a canadian band called saga.they released an album called 20/20 in 2012.what a fool!

    March 16, 2013 at 10:04 am | Report abuse |
  5. What kind of lense is that ... just curious...

    Love the cd...its terrific

    March 14, 2013 at 6:45 am | Report abuse |
  6. if i am in true love and trust him...

    jessica is always naked...sheesh...your girls need too relax..

    March 13, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
  7. whats everyone doing tonight?


    March 13, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mr.Buttersworth

    I bet if you listened to his CD with dry toast, it would be the butter that was missing.

    March 13, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |
  9. funny


    March 13, 2013 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Pearly Goo

    oooooohhhh, im all over everything

    March 13, 2013 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • The Goo

      thick, ropey strands of pearly goo, spouting all upward, leaving behind a beautiful, beaded necklace as a souvenier

      March 13, 2013 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
  11. we'll try white today.

    wish i could see him.

    March 13, 2013 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Fran

    i'm sure the cd is darn good.

    March 13, 2013 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
  13. M.A.P. (Mothers against poo)

    It's the crapp est album ive heard in years. I hate it.

    March 13, 2013 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Christian A

      I hate it too. I loved his first two albums, but this is absolutely atrocious. Music as reality television. Perhaps the next album will be about how he massively, gigantically loves Jennifer Lawrence. I consider myself a romantic, but there's a certain point where expressing that affection in such a grating and often bonehead way makes his music intolerable to listen to.

      "Baby it's thick/Now I know why they call it a fatty repeat x 1,000,000

      March 20, 2013 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
  14. Hobart Schmenge

    I have those same glasses!

    March 13, 2013 at 9:05 am | Report abuse |
  15. Frannie

    I am addicted to his cd

    March 13, 2013 at 7:19 am | Report abuse |
  16. J.T.

    My sh itz tight yolo

    March 13, 2013 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
  17. downsideoffame

    Offer good for seven days,
    With ownership 100 percent and rights .
    to song...voice lyrics . And ofmsong. On album released...2013
    negotiated , a million dollars payable upon acceptance. Of contract...
    1 ( one ) song. One album formal. Name. Mirror

    March 12, 2013 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  18. downsideoffame

    Justin ,...the song you hate on album...we'll buy it & rights, a million dollar offer

    When it comes to solving , " NIGHTMARE PROBLEMS "
    Elite. Problem solvers...honest," "interactive," and "cordial "
    Our name states it. Down side of fame , AdamsFamily negotiations
    Let us assist U... We pull the good out of the Bad, PUBLICITY (E us at)
    Contracts24 (at)'ll get back to you with our events, An event of ours, Campaign was covered By National Media Coverage...& tv ...Our people are some of the best in the world, Regardless of location and,The level

    of detail and practical approach, It is our high level of our determination to get to the truth. old fashion values... we do business with a handshake , and get it done...
    (. Some of the top named, celebrity's. are our clients. )
    They say that love is in your brain, as well as in your heart, ,,,,,.,,..BUT friendship is something else. It’s much deeper, and it’s more lasting. Our friendship, has lasted a lifetime. We help this thing called LOVE , It is the. DEEPEST PAIN, when the heart hurts EVERYONE COULD USE SOME-HELP. ONCE IN AWHILE WITH.
    The course of true love.

    March 12, 2013 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Casa Alone Again

    we will hear from Kate in about 20 minutes.

    March 12, 2013 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
  20. The Gosselin Blues

    good doggie

    March 12, 2013 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Sokman

    Dudes growing up. Nice to see his music is maturing as he does. His lonely Island videos are still hilarious though

    March 12, 2013 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Peace

      Do be honest, I don't think I would know 1 song of his if I heard it w/o being told who it was.

      March 12, 2013 at 9:43 pm | Report abuse |

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