The last time Janet Jackson released an album, there was no Instagram, Obama wasn’t president, and no one had heard of Justin Bieber. Now seven years later, the pop icon returns with Unbreakable, out now via Rhythm Nation Records/BMG.
Fans have been breathlessly anticipating the album for months, as songs like the J. Cole-assisted “No Sleeep,” which remains No. 1 on Billboard’s Adult R&B chart, “BURNITUP!” with Missy Elliott, and the title track hit the web.
The follow-up to 2008’s Discipline more than lives up to expectations—Janet shows off a dynamic range, from jazz-inflected songs like “After You Fall,” to bubbling electronic productions like “The Great Forever.” She samples Sly & The Family Stone’s “Dance to the Music” on the funky “Gon’ B Alright,” while “Broken Hearts Heal” is a tribute to brother Michael Jackson.
The 19 tracks find Janet re-uniting with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, the hitmakers who were involved with her formative albums like Control, almost 30 years ago.
“I think the record is everything she wanted it to be,” Jam told BBC. “So I hope people are accepting of it and enjoy it.”
Buy Unbreakable on iTunes and stream it below via Spotify.