http://assets-s3.rollingstone.com/assets/images/album_review/b1092e3ea5c5e4bfe24af8759a30462f4a1fbeda.jpg Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson

Rolling Stone: star rating
Community: star rating
5 2 0
September 14, 1998

Control (1986) and Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 (1989) went far in wasting any lingering impression of their creator as merely Michael's kid sis. Irrefutably the work of a woman of substance, "janet." completes the makeover. Enlisting whiz producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis for Control was Jackson's first flash of brilliance; the duo fused hip-hop assertiveness and pop smarts to spark both the singer's big-time explosion and a new persona; a sweetheart but a powerhouse, cute but no ingenue. "Janet." deepens the groove. With 27 tracks (songs punctuated with sound effects, pillow talk and theatrical sound bites) and titles ("Throb," "The Body That Loves You") that spell out the album's theme, this is Jackson's erotic rite of passage. Collaborations with opera diva Kathleen Battle and Public Enemy's Chuck D hint at the music's allusiveness; from MOR balladry to Memphis soul, from house to jazz. In more versatile voice than ever, Jackson perches atop the rhythmic percolations; cool, not exactly calm, but collected.

Album Review Main Next


Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...


Sort by:
    Read More
    Around the Web
    Powered By ZergNet
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.


    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “Long Walk Home”

    Bruce Springsteen | 2007

    When the subject of this mournful song returns home, he hardly recognizes his town. Springsteen told Rolling Stone the alienation the man feels is a metaphor for life in a politically altered post-9/11 America. “Who would have ever thought we’d live in a country without habeas corpus?” he said. “That’s Orwellian. That’s what political hysteria is about and how effective it is. I felt it in myself. You get frightened for your family, for your home. And you realize how countries can move way off course, very far from democratic ideals.”

    More Song Stories entries »