Xscape is the second posthumous LP from the legendary pop icon Michael Jackson – but is it any good?
Xscape includes eight previously unreleased tracks which were originally recorded between 1983 and 2002.
Timbaland, Jerome “J-Roc” Harmon, Stargate, Rodney Jerkins and LA Reid produced the album using a capella versions of the tracks and updated his sound with beats we hear in today’s tracks.
The iconic Jackson grunts, gasps and sweet sounding voice compliment the incredible sounding beats laid on every track. The producers struck a great balance of matching beats which not only sounded modern, embodied Jackson’s sound but didn’t overshadow or detract from his vocal uniqueness and lyrical content.
Speaking of lyrical content, Xscape isn’t all about the joyfully light “Human Nature” or “The Way You Make Me Feel.” For those of you who favour those types of songs I suggest you listen to “Loving You” and opening track/lead single “Love Never Felt So Good”which features a favourite pop icon of mine, Justin Timberlake.
The track “Slave To The Rhythm” pertains to a woman in a less than pleasant marriage and a job she dislikes, “Chicago” touches on unknowingly being involved with a married woman with children and “Do You Know Where Your Children Are” talks about a young girl escaping sexual abuse and turning to prostitution.
The Jackson estate were all on board when it came to the creation of Xscape – so you won’t see any legal cases regarding illegal use of content emerging.
The LA Times summarised Xscape accurately when they said:
Does it swing? Yes. Does it feel like a contractual obligation album? No. Does it honor Jackson’s legacy? Yes. Can you dance to it? God yes. Can you mash to it? Certainly.
The Verdict: To answer my first question: yes it is good, very good – go and get it.
We’ll never know whether Michael Jackson would like this album – however his legacy and sound is undoubtedly honoured in this posthumous release. It just feels damn good to listen to his voice again in new songs and still groove like I always have to MJ.
Will you be purchasing Xscape? Or if you’ve listened to it what do you think?