Timbaland's overwhelming success as a producer and songwriter has landed his once-unusual space-age, percussion-heavy style of hip-hop square in the mainstream. Good for the bank account but bad for the creativity, it seems. "Shock Value II" (Blackground) feels mass produced, from the name to the way pal Justin Timberlake uses fast-food ordering as a come-on in "Carry Out" and the dreary rock-tinged pop served by One Republic ("Marching On") and The Fray
("Undertow"). Only on the infectious "If We Ever Meet Again," with Katy Perry, and the playful "Morning After Dark" and "We Belong to Music," with Miley Cyrus, do we get flashes of the mad-scientist Timbaland who once seemed unstoppable.
"Shock Value II"
BOTTOM LINE Too little shock, too much schlock
Exclusive subscription offer
Newsday covers the stories that matter most to Long Islanders. We dig deep to uncover the facts, hold the powerful in check and keep a watchful eye on Long Island.
Your digital subscription, starting at $1, supports local journalism vital to the community.SUBSCRIBE NOW