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Michael by Michael Jackson
Released: Dec 2010
Label: Epic
Forgive the bad joke, but Michael Jackson sounds more alive on this posthumous album than he had in years. But it's a strange vigor, as if the MJ on these unreleased tracks from the 1980s through 2009 is propped up, animated by the bouncing, eclectic, very 21st century production that doesn't quite feel like his. And yet while Jackson's somewhat frail vocals initially sound, well, just weird tucked amidst the rat-a-tat gunshot beats and 50 Cent cameos, it's not as strained as one might think. He's especially vibrant when branching out to cover Yellow Magic Orchestra's "Behind the Mask."
Rachel Devitt
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