Shock Value

Shock Value

Timbaland’s star making productions for the likes of R&B artists like Aaliyah, Justin Timberlake, and Ginuwine have done much to define the sound of popular music over the past decade. Though contemporaries like The Neptunes and Lil Jon rival him in popularity, few producers have been able to blend hardcore dance floor appeal and challenging experimentalism with the skill and avidity of Timbaland. 2006 was something of a banner year for him, and the colossal success of Timberlake’s SexyBack and Nelly Furtado’s Loose raised anticipation for Shock Value to a fever pitch. Though some critics have expressed disappointment with Shock Value’s overwhelming eclecticism, foolhardy ambition has always been one of Timbaland’s saving graces. Who but Timbaland could conceive of the twisted Medtronic meet Miami Bass stomp of “Bounce” or the exhilarating, if possibly sacrilegious, take on Nina Simone’s “Sinnerman” that is “Oh Timbaland”? If Shock Value suffers from some poor decision making (see Fall Out Boy’s cringe inducing contribution to One and Only) the album contains more than enough redeeming moments to make it a worthy entry into Timbaland’s catalogue.

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