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Hear Justin Timberlake's new single 'Suit and Tie'

Justin Timberlake returns to music after six years

Justin Timberlake returns to music after six years focusing on his acting. "The 20/20 Experience" album is due out later in 2013. Credit: Terry Richardson

Justin Timberlake is bringing, well, music back.

After announcing his return to recording after six years and then making the world wait for three more days, Timberlake unveiled “Suit and Tie” this morning on his website and on MySpace, the social network he is trying to revive.

“Some people may criticize me for the last three days,” Timberlake writes in an open letter, accompanying the song. “But it was fun, right?? Right?!?! Besides, I'd rather speak directly to all of you. And, who can knock me for having a little bit of fun with it?”

Actually, plenty of people can knock him (and have) for his stunt, but the criticism will fade once people get a load of “Suit and Tie,” which also features a fine verse from Jay-Z.

“Suit and Tie” is the kind of retro-sounding R&B-with-a-twist that Timberlake – and his collaborator-producer, Timbaland – used to have all to himself back in the “FutureSex/LoveSounds” days. However, times have changed and this style of R&B is now filled with interesting new artists, including Frank Ocean and Miguel.

Timberlake now finds himself playing catch-up, and “Suit and Tie” sounds like it, lacking the raw, emotional punch of the newcomers. However, Timberlake and Timbaland lay out a smooth groove and horn flourishes that certainly go down easy and will soon dominate radio when it arrives there Tuesday morning.

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“Suit and Tie” is the first single from Timberlake's forthcoming “The 20/20 Experience” album, the product of what he calls “just creating with no rules and/or end goal in mind and really enjoying the process.”

“The inspiration for this really came out of the blue and to be honest, I didn't expect anything out of it,” he wrote. “I just went into the studio and started playing around with some sounds and songs. It was probably the best time I've had in my career. ... What I came up with is something I couldn't be more excited about! It is full of inspiration that I grew up listening to and some newfound muses that I've discovered along the way.”

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