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Justin Timberlake 

The 20/20 Experience (RCA)

Make no mistake; a new album from Justin Timberlake will always be a landmark event. But after a seven-year wait, I’m disappointed to say The 20/20 Experience is a mostly hit-or-miss affair. Obviously, there won’t be many better songs in 2013 than blissful lead single “Suit & Tie,” and other tracks such as the disorienting “Tunnel Vision” tap into Frank Ocean’s recent sonically adventurous territory. That said, songs such as “Don’t Hold the Wall” and “Strawberry Bubblegum” are half-baked ideas at best, and for some reason they’re all stretched into eight-minute slogs. Despite many bright spots, The 20/20 Experience is far too long and innocuous to live up to the expectations.

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Vol 25, No 20
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