Picks and Pans Review: Janet Jackson

UPDATED 03/03/2008 at 01:00 AM EST Originally published 03/03/2008 at 01:00 AM EST

Discipline |

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CRITIC'S CHOICE

R&B-POP

After a career slump, Janet Jackson answers any questions about what she's done for us lately with Discipline, her best album since 2001's All for You. Working without producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis for the first time since before Control, the pop diva brings in some new blood—and comes up with some fresher sounds. While still letting Janet be Janet, Discipline puts a spanking new sheen on her mix of clubby dance tracks, candy-coated midtempo confections and sweet and sexy slow jams. Highlights include the bubbly, synth-happy "LUV," "Rollercoaster," an exciting ride with a banging drum loop, and the lushly atmospheric "Can't B Good," on which Ne-Yo, who cowrote this and two other tunes, brings out the Michael in Janet.

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