Michael Jackson‘s new album, “Michael,” is out. I have my copy. And guess what? An electronics store in mid town Manhattan actually put a pile of them on sale today by accident. They were a week too soon– or “Much Too Soon” to quote a title from the new album. Anyway, after I told them, they put it away. My copy didn’t come from the store. (I was buying a camera.)
The best thing about the finished album: “Breaking News” is great. It’s all Michael singing all the way through it. Sony screwed up the mix on the Michael Jackson website last month, which sent his fans into shock. But the real mix is clearly Michael’s vocals from beginning to end. It’s a very good track.
The other tracks made with Eddie Cascio, first conceived by his brother Frank Cascio with co-writer James Porte, are excellent. Both “Keep Your Head Up” and “Monster,” the latter featuring 50 Cent, are destined for singles. Again, they are clearly all Michael. “Monster” is destined to be a Monster hit.
The other standouts are the Lenny Kravitz recording, “Another Day,” and “I Like the Way You Love Me.” The latter is a different version from the one known to fans, and on the video in this column. It’s been totally re-conceived. And it has a nice snippet of Michael talking on work tape. This also is so ready for radio play–it will be a welcome addition to the airwaves.
The sleeper track: a little funk number called “Behind the Mask.”
Considering all his complaining, I was surprised to find Michael’s nephew, Taryll Jackson, featured on a track. On the album’s liner notes, the album is dedicated to “Michael’s children, Katherine Jackson, and the entire Jackson family.”