Re: So, Invincible is much better than everybody thought....
First off, I just want to say the media made this album off to be such a flop when it sold 8 MILLION copies worldwide off of just one single and a complete lack of promotion. The interest was so obviously there, I really think he could have sold 30 million just like Dangerous or Bad did; to sell that many copies with doing only literally 5% of what he did for those other albums shows that this was a big seller relatively. Britney's "Britney" album in 2001 sold the same amount of copies, and she was at her peak during that time.
Now, to continue the discussion of the quality of the album: I don't think the problem is the actual songs, but the tracklisting of the tracks. Let's just say if I've never heard the album and I was given a random track to listen to daily from the album every day for 16 days, I would probably love every track. The first trio of songs is already a problem to the album because you now have 3 VERY similar sounding tracks starting off and the listener gets bored. "Unbreakable" is an amazing track and "Heartbreaker" has a great rhythm, I think these are fine to start off the album but I think "Invincible" should have been left off the album or put somewhere else in the tracklist. It's a good song but doesn't match up to the first two tracks. From "Break of Dawn" to "You Are My Life", the songs are perfection. I love every single one of those tracks.
"Break of Dawn" is one of Michael's most sexual songs and that's why I love it, usually he kind of goes around the subject of sex but here he tackles it straight forward. It's such a baby making track. "Heaven Can Wait", "Butterflies" and "Speechless" are some of his best R&B tracks, the melodies are beautiful and his vocals are the best I've heard them yet. Also, I LOVE "You Rock My World" but it was the wrong choice for lead single. "2000 Watts" is a very original club track, I think it was my favorite track when I first heard the album. "You Are My Life"- another example of MJ's quote "Melody is king", the melody, harmonies and vocals on this track are beautiful.
The second half of the album I think is where the problems set in. "Privacy" is a good track, but not needed for the album. Same message we've heard before except on a track that is not as good as the other ones centered around this theme of insensitive media. "Don't Walk Away" is a little too Backstreet Boys, juts a little too generic sounding besides his vocals which are AMAZING. I would still keep it on the album though, maybe make the production a little more grittier. Too cookie-cutter for him, but the emotions that he exudes through it is great. "Cry", like "Privacy", is the same theme he's done before except not as good. "Cry" might be one of the worst tracks on the album and I have NO idea why it was the second single.
"The Lost Children" is SO underrated, one of the better tracks of the album 100%. It's such a MJ track, you can feel his soul through this one. "Whatever Happens" and "Threatened" are some of his best tracks ever; "Threatened" is the modern-day Thriller while "Whatever Happens" is up there with one of his most original tracks.
In conclusion, the album is great but is a little bloated and the songs were not ordered correctly. "Privacy" and "Cry" need to be left off the album. Again, these are not bad tracks and I love them separately but they just bloat the album for no reason.
Singles should have been:
*Buzz Single: "2000 Watts" - release this song to the clubs in January 2001 but don't announce it's MJ yet, kind of let it get around through media that he has a new song that's going around club circuits
1.) "Unbreakable" - March 2001, huge video production, huge lead single premiere, etc.
ALBUM RELEASE: May 29th, 2001
2.) "Butterflies" - June 2001, perfect summer single, was a big R&B hit already with no real single release so it would have been a great REAL second single
3.) "Whatever Happens" - September 2001, one of his best songs and he could have premiered it with a VMA performance with Santana
4.) "Heartbreaker" - January 2002, great way to ring in the new year with a very modern sounding track, could have a Grammy performance
5.) "Heaven Can Wait" - April 2002, breezy track with perfect vocals and harmonies, often looked at as a highlight on the album, very spring sounding
6.) "You Rock My World" - July 2002, SUMMER soundtrack song, slay those family BBQs and the video could have had a new dance that sets the world on fire (something easy though, that people will all try to be copying the moves during the chorus or something)
7.) "Threatened" - October 2002, modern-day Thriller, an iconic music video that would involve the scariest and creepiest imagery, etc.
END era. You could also throw a world tour in there during the era, lol. And then in 2003 he would sweep the Grammys and then take a good long break for the entire year haha.