After teasing a snippet of new single, “Take Back The Night,” Justin Timberlake unleashed the full 6-minute song today on YouTube.
The disco tune is the first single from “The 20/20 Experience- 2 of 2,” the sequel to “The 20/20 Experience,” which comes out Sept. 30.
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The track is more accessible and poppier than much of the material on the experimental “The 20/20 Experience,” but still feels like a cousin to some of the material on that album, in part because of the beats and producer Timbaland’s delightful reliance of staccato horns punctuating certain verses.
Whereas Timberlake seemed to be referencing Frank Sinatra and Marvin Gaye on “The 20/20 Experience,” for “Take Back The Night,” he’s straight-on saluting Michael Jackson. The only message here is to keep on dancing: “Take back the night/dizzy, spinning, sweating, you can’t catch your breath/take back the night/Ooh, don’t know when the sun is rising next.” Timberlake co-wrote the song with Timbaland, Jerome “J-Roc” Harmon, and James Fauntleroy. All produced, except for Fauntleroy.
The hook is strong, but once again, like so many of the songs on “The 20/20 Experience,” the song feels incomplete. There are so many great elements here that it should be impossible to sit still during this song, but it’s all too easy to just sway in your seat instead of get up on your feet. It needed more killer beats and an undeniable chorus. There’s so much promise that it doesn’t completely deliver on, while still being a very enjoyable song.
“The 20/20 Experience - 2 of 2” features 11 songs as well as some kind of bonus track. “I originally recorded a massive amount of material and decided on the 20 tracks that I wanted on the album over a year,” Timberlake said in a statement. “But when I was mixing and going through all the songs, there were so many that I loved, I couldn’t resist, I had to throw in something extra on the 2nd half.”
Fans who pre-order “The 20/20 Experience - 2 of 2” or “The 20/20 Experience — The Complete Experience” (which features all 21 tracks and the bonus) on iTunes will receive an instant download of “Take Back The Night.” Timberlake uses the same artwork for all three (so expect some major confusion), except for "2 of 2," the letters J and t are higher up and the black and white photo has some gold added. For "The Complete Experience," the photo is a negative image.
Timberlake and Jay-Z start their 12-city “Legends of the Summer Stadium Tour” on July 17 in Toronto. After playing the iTunes Music Festival in London in September, Timberlake will heading his own world tour starting Oct. 31.
“The 20/20 Experience” is the best-selling album of 2013, having sold more than 2.3 million copies since its March release, according to Nielsen SoundScan.