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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Paradox of Janet
For most, "20 Y.O." cuts to the chase of what she has been doing for the past few years, refining her frothy hybrid of R&B/Pop on each LP. On records such as 2001's "All For You" & 2004's "Damita Jo" Janet simply seemed to be ironing out the same formula, yet there it was only implied. As if all those records were truly leading to the 20th year marker for her 1986...
Published on September 26, 2006 by Neptunian Spirit

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 3-1/2 stars -- Somewhere in the middle of both decades
When I first got word that Janet Jackson's new album was going to be called 20 Y.O. (short for Years Old, if you don't know that yet), I thought that it was a reference to her career longevity, but Janet actually said in interviews that the album is titled as such because she feels like she's twenty years old; to that I said, "OH, boy." But this album really isn't that...
Published on September 5, 2007 by Anthony Rupert


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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Paradox of Janet, September 26, 2006
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (CD+DVD) (Audio CD)
For most, "20 Y.O." cuts to the chase of what she has been doing for the past few years, refining her frothy hybrid of R&B/Pop on each LP. On records such as 2001's "All For You" & 2004's "Damita Jo" Janet simply seemed to be ironing out the same formula, yet there it was only implied. As if all those records were truly leading to the 20th year marker for her 1986 (junior) LP "Control". Here, she states in title, song, that this is a dedication to the period that put her on the map.

One could gripe & argue that Janet has been repeating herself, but to make it simple, what is the point? No one in music today commands such a wide berth of fans with her trademark sound. On that merit, "20 Y.O." not only succeeds, it soars.

The record opens with an intro that blurs (for those sharp Janet heads) melodies from "What Have You Done For Me Lately?", "Miss You Much",& oddly enough "China Love". This segues into the "dance area" of the LP lining up three solid dance cuts that recall the rhythmic funk of her vintage days. "So Excited" is a gritty dance number (think "Nasty" now) utilizing the Herbie Hancock "Rockit" sample well, & "Get It Out Me" & "Show Me" both feel as if they were handpicked from 1986.

Other highlights include "Do It 2 Me" which utilizes a Brenda Russel sample to a hauntingly erotic effect. Songs such as these show how Jam, Lewis, & Jackson go unparrelled in their use of samples. How they take a sample & make it their own. It will have new folks wondering where these sounds have come from, whilst older fans will be digging through their respective vinyl stacks & CD racks to find the originator of the sample.

"Enjoy" lives up to the fan hype & is a breezy,life affirming, melodic number, "With U" is a beautiful ballad & represents why Janet's ballads have become very well received. Her voice is strong & comes across soulful on this number. The strings here are also a nice touch. Even the slow burn first single "Call On Me" comes to life here, sounding tart & sweet in the context of the record.

Basically, if you enjoy what Janet does, flawlessly mixing pop & R&B on a level no one has yet to repeat, then this is for you. There will be those that won't like this, but you can't please everyone. Janet seems to have found her niche, maybe that is her innovation, coasting flawlessly unlike many others who flounder at this point their careers.

The bonus edition is definitely worth the tag. I own this copy. It comes in a gold glazed box, including a miniture, glazed 48-page,booklet with color photos & lyrics. Also, the album & DVD (which details the "20 Y.O." project in detail) come in a glazed slip case. Very beautiful & for collectors.

Highly recommended!
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Album in the past 5 years. Miss Jackson is Back!!!, September 26, 2006
By 
Rodney Gunn "babyblue" (Opelika, Alabama United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (Audio CD)
This is by far the best album Janet has put out since The Velvet Rope. This is also the best album put out within the last 5 years. This album puts Beyonce, Christina, and Justin to shame. The original Diva is back and all her followers need to bow down.
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54 of 67 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a Classic, but Good, September 26, 2006
By 
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This review is from: 20 Y.O. (Audio CD)
Let's be honest, this isn't a classic Janet Jackson CD. When put next to earlier cds such as 'Rhythm Nation' and 'Velvet Rope" or even 'All For You', it seems like she's honoring her 20 years as a music star by going in a completely different direction. '20 Y.O.' has a selection of songs that remind you of something a 20-something year old music star today would be doing. Perhaps that's because Jermaine Dupri has steered her in this direction with a sound that sounds a bit beneath her. Gone are the real classic hits and tunes we'd expect from Janet and in there place are rather commercial R&B and pop songs without that true Janet touch.

That being said, '20 Y.O.' is still enjoyable once you accept it as something new and it's own cd. The first five songs on the cd are true dance. "So Excited" is the first real upbeat Janet song we've gotten in a while. It does sort of have an old-school sounding beat to it that helps it stand out as a track and single. "Get It Out Me" is in some regards pure 80s and perhaps one of the best tracks on the cd. It reminds you a bit of LL Cool J's "Lose Control" and Janet's vocals are pretty good on that. "Show Me" is laid back and continues this retro-dance feel and perhaps showcases Janet's voice the best on the cd. "Do It 2 Me" is another interesting song that's sort of muddied at the start with Jermaine Dupri inserted his voice and vocals or rapping style into the mix, as he seems to do with a lot of songs he produces (he appears or intrudes in numerous songs on Mariah's "Emancipation of Mimi"). The song is setup to be a sort of naughtier, sexed up, dance driven sequal to "I Get Lonely" and she pulls it off well.

I'd say by the second intro, the CD goes from being upbeat and good to just being okay. The tracks lose the dance feel, they sort of lose the retro sound and upbeat manner and for the most part go into a laid back groove state. "With U" is a ballad of sorts that's really nice, "Enjoy" is Janet encouraging the listeners to just sit back and enjoy what life has to offer, "Daybreak" is the well produced song that sounds as if it could easily have fit in on an early 80s Janet cd. The rest of the songs don't stand out, the intros don't add a thing to the songs but unecessary breaks and pauses in the music.

In all, the CD was good. I'd say as a whole it's a stronger release than "Damita Jo". As for it being a sort of tribute or celebration of her 20 years as a musical star ... it seems to do that by attempting to turn her music and sound into an imitation of what's popular today, and that isn't appealing or necessary. That's what makes it a bit weak because in some respects, the first five songs are the best, but they're also the ones that seem to be the least bit Janet and she sounds as if she's trying hard (too hard at times) to stay relevant and fresh instead of embracing the sounds, subjects, and lyrics of her music from the past two decades. Good, though, and worth the purchase.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Janet brings back sizzling heat!!!!!!, September 26, 2006
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (Audio CD)
Janet has been and will for ever will be one of the most iconic women in the world. Her and Madonna are probelly the two biggest female international superstars that still make great music today.

Janet really shows her fun side, instead of talking about race, empowering women, sexual orientation, and children. She states that she just wants to have fun.

She starts the album off with 5 club bangers off the bat. This women means business! So Excited (with Khia) her second single), Show Me (were she raps in the chorus and at the end of the song), Get It Out Me is just another amazing club banger. Do It To Me; which you can tell has Kanye West and JD heavily influenced beats on the track.

And the haunting rock anthem "This Body" a personal favorite on the album for me!

Then 20 YO PART 2

With U; which can be easily the best R&B song since "We Belong Together" by Mariah Carey (2005) or "Trippin (That's The Way Love Works" by Toni Braxton (2005)And her first single which is cute duet with Nelly.

20 YO Part 3 - the classic JANET, and pop song

"DayBreak" which is probelly can be determined the only pop song same with "Enjoy" and maybe "With U" on the album.

"DayBreak" definity has the "Someone To Call My Lover" kinda vibe, but the beat is tens time better and so are the lyrics and vocals.

"Enjoy" is classic Janet. The Janet that we have known for these past 20 Years. Easily gonna be a favorite for those older Janet Fans.

20 YO Part 4

"Take Care" is definity the "Rope Burn" or the "Anytime, Anyplace" on the album. Really, classy sexual song. Janet really brings back the sexy slow jam on this one.

and "Love2Love" the sweet and soultry ballad. Which really brings Janet back into the "The Vevlet Rope" days. Definitly going to be another favorite!

The album definitly deserves a 5/5. This goes down in the books with the other great Janet albums!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Because You Only Turn 20...Twice!, September 26, 2006
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (CD+DVD) (Audio CD)
20 Y.O. is the 9th studio album from Janet Jackson. This record is a 20 year celebration of Jackson's hit "Control" album, where she took the reigns from her father and teamed up with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. 20 Y.O.'s first single, "Call On Me" with St.Louis rapper Nelly is a mid-tempo #1 R&B/Hip-hop hit that duets the two in a love match and also samples the SOS band's "Tell me if you Still Care". This song brought Janet back in the music scene and to the top of the charts. The second single, "So Excited" features southern female rapper Khia and samples Herbie Hancock's "Rock It". This song is a classic Janet-style dance track meant for the clubs and "If"/"All Nite (Don't Stop)" fans. Another track, "Enoy" is classic Janet and similar to her #1 hit "Escapade", a very happy and upbeat song that is sure to be a fan-favorite. "Show Me" is a dance song about the girl (Janet) waiting for the guy to make a move instead of talking about it. "Love 2 Love" is one of what fan's call 'baby-making' songs, it show's Janet's sexual side and the intimacy she shares with her man in the bedroom. "This Body" is a pop-rock song about what it's titled! Janet showin' off her sexy body singing, this track brings back the pop-rock Janet sound fans love! "Take Care" is a slow song about waiting for your significant other all alone, this comes before the sexual encounter as in "Love 2 Love". "With U" is car knocker as described by JD, an urban felt jam that sets in an R&B/soul vibe, a great choice for a forthcoming single. "Get it Out Me" showcases what Janet does best, dance! This song is my favorite on the album and has a great hook, beat and dance break! Great future single choice! "Do it 2 Me" is a fan favorite and a 'bounce' track. The song is similar to "Like You Don't Love Me" in that she wants her man to do the work. "Daybreak" is a light melodic pop song that makes you feel good inside, it themes around staying up all night and exploring the city and taking it back to the innocent days of having to sneak back into bed before, daybreak. Overall this cd is very solid and still keeps true to Janet and what fans have grown to love about her! This record is truly a celebration of 20 years worth of hits and musical history, this cd celebrates the past and easily rides into the future of where music should be going.
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45 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the criticism is 20 years old, September 27, 2006
By 
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (Audio CD)
i'm a 20 year veteran - if there were medals given for valour in the line of duty supporting this woman's artistry i would have all of them 3 times over. i've invested the time to read approximately 100 reviews of this album by googling "janet jackson," just seeing what the general reaction is. i did this, not because i don't have faith in my own opinion, but because i was so excited (excuse the pun) that she'd released an album i didn't have to force myself to like, and i wanted to see all those doubters admit that they were wrong for hatin'. i see i was overly optimistic concerning the critics. i admit, "all for you" and "damita jo" were embarrassing for me as a die-hard fan, and i was nervous about this album when i heard some of the pre-release singles... however, i was really REALLY pleasantly surprised - this album is full of catchy music, so i don't understand the "unmemorable" comments. at any rate, what i am reading online now sounds an awful lot like what i used to read about the albums "control," "rhythm nation," "janet.," and "the velvet rope." when those albums came out all the nay-sayers said her voice was weak, her tunes were forgetable, she was either too shallow or too deep, that she had little star quality, and that she was always in danger of suddenly waking up fat... those same people today call janet an icon, yet they still seem very eager to downplay her appeal. this is very shady on their part as professional reviewers, because it implies very strongly that they have no opinion of their own until they see how many copies an artist will sell - if they're so smart, why don't THEY create 5 consecutive number 1 albums and over 25 hit singles? my review boils down to this: jealous people are as biased towards the negative as fans are biased towards the positive. i am personally so completely sass-tified with this release that i have (in only 24 hours and about 10 replays of the album) forgiven miss jackson for "damito jo." it's such a fun, Fun, FUN album... people criticized janet's old style then acclaimed it years after it became successful, and i personally feel that that's what is happening all over again. janet's sound is not 20 years old, their snobbish criticisms are.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Phenomenal, creative, retrospective, and fresh! Janet has really outdone herself!, September 27, 2006
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (CD+DVD) (Audio CD)
I cannot think of a more fitting homage to Janet's 20 iconic years in the music business, than her new album, "20 Y.O." 20 Y.O. gives us glimpses back to the music that inspired Janet when she was recording her 1st hit LP, "Control," 20 years ago, but the album also has a contemporary, fresh feel that is sure to please both "veteran" Janet fans and younger audiences. While 20 Y.O. is, in many respects, ground-breaking in its creativity, the album is also interspersed with moments of "Classic Janet," such as on tracks like the luscious "Enjoy," and "Daybreak," a bright, cheery confection of a song that always brings a smile to your face.

Janet is known for the variety of musical genres on her albums, and 20 Y.O. certainly does not disappoint this regard. The album gives us everything from bass-heavy dance tracks like "So Excited" and "Get It Out Me;" to the rock-tinged "This Body;" electro-funk bangers like "Show Me;" and, of course, sweet mid-tempo jams like "With You," a smooth treat for the ears that plays like a follow-up to "Let's Wait a While." Janet also takes it back to her R&B roots with the sumptuous, sexy, slow-grinder, "Love 2 Love," and the infectious "Do It 2 Me," which makes ingenious use of a sample from Brenda Russell's "If Only for One Night," over Jermaine Dupri's signature lean-with-it-rock-with it bounce.

And, of course, no Janet album would be complete without one or two of her classic "baby-making" songs. In this respect, Janet delivers wonderfully with 2 tracks that are more sexually-suggestive than explicit: the sensual "Take Care" (a classic Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis slow jam reminiscent of "Come Back to Me" and "Any Time, Any Place"), and "Love 2 Love."

Janet, JD, Jimmy and Terry have done an amazing job putting together an album that is equal parts retrospective and modern; as well as inventive and fun. "20 Y.O" will easily become the must-have album of 2006.

REVIEW OF THE SPECIAL EDITION "EXTRAS":

The 30-minute DVD is a nice addition to the Special Edition of "20 Y.O." If you are interested in what goes on behind-the-scenes, the DVD will be a real treat. I especially loved the parts where they showed Janet, Jermaine Dupri and the Legendary Jimmy Jam working in the studio, and the dancer auditions.

The 48-page booklet is a must-have for any Janet fan, memorabilia collector, or anyone who appreciates top-class photography. There are some gorgeous high-quality pictures of Janet taken by photography guru James White, along with the lyrics and credits.

Both the DVD and booklet are well worth the extra cash.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars She brought it, September 26, 2006
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (Audio CD)
This album is comparable to 2004's Confessions by Usher and 2005's Emancipation of Mimi by Mariah. There are several single wrothy songs, besides the two lead singles I love "Get It Out Me", "Enjoy" and "Daybreak" plus a bonus track available for download "Roll Witchu". I bet this will win the Grammy for best R&B album, and if it doesn't than it should have. I highly recoomend you go out and buy it, it's fun and it doesn't cost that much either. :)
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You know you want this....., September 27, 2006
By 
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (Audio CD)
Finally Janet has released an album which truly captures everything she is about. Whilst 'All For You' and 'Damita Jo' were by no means bad albums, they just often seemed too uneven and unfocused. However, after one listen to '20 Y.O', I could honestly say that every song on this album works, and it never comes across as being self-indulgent (All For You) or rushed. This is an album which has enough jams to get the blood pumping, with an equal amount of tracks for those quiet late nights.

Highlights:

So Excited:

This should definately have been the lead single, as it is hot!! Khia adds a nice touch to this song, as it's beat and lush vocals will transport you into the zone.

Show Me:

This song is understated and catchy, and will definately have you up and dancing by the chorus.

Get It Out Me:

WOW WOW WOW, this has got to be one of the best club songs Janet has created. The vocals on this track are very remeniscent of the Velvet Rope era, and the beat is out of this world.

This Body:

I don't know why, but this song reminds me of the brilliance of 'If', as it just has that energy that only a Janet song could have. A definate highlight of the album!

Daybreak:

This song pays homage to classics such as 'Whoops Now', 'Escapade' and 'Miss U Much', and janet really seems to perfectly convey the feeling of what she is singing.

Love 2 Love:

yeap, this wouldn't be a Janet album without it's fair share of baby-making songs. Fans who appreciated songs such as 'Anytime, Anyplace' and 'Would You Mind', will find much to enjoy in this sensual and beautiful track.

CONCLUSION:

Don't even think twice - just get this album into your Cd player/Ipod ASAP!!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compare it with music TODAY and you will find this release *shines* above all., October 30, 2006
This review is from: 20 Y.O. (Audio CD)
I find a lot of criticisms going towards this album, which are unfair, fans which are clinging to the past and wanting a repeat of what already happened. I say, thank goodness Janet isn't using the same 80's beats and has moved on to a more chill, hip-hop, or overall more evolved sound.

This album is different from her others and her voice is very calm and soothing. The ballad "Take Care" is so beautiful in melody and lyrics that I can't resist to shed a tear or two...so I guess it all boils down to individual taste and how you feel when you hear something. "Enjoy" also is beautifully laden with gems of Janet's voice and lyrics.

This release stands out above other releases out today, since she still has a unique voice and she just has aged slightly in the past few years. She is similar to Madonna in the way that fans are mocking both of their latest releases, basically complaining how their voices have changed. They're 20 years older, get over it.
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20 Y.O. (CD+DVD)
20 Y.O. (CD+DVD) by Janet Jackson (Audio CD - 2006)
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