Justin Timberlake’s ‘Suit & Tie’ Featuring Jay-Z, Most Soulful Release Yet

Billy Johnson, Jr.
Hip-Hop Media Training (NEW)

Nearly seven years after Justin Timberlake raised the stakes for dance pop music with “SexyBack,” his contemporaries are still riding the wave. But the former N’Sync singer has moved on.

LISTEN to Justin Timberlake's "Suit & Tie" Featuring Jay-Z

“Suit & Tie” featuring Jay-Z, Justin’s long-anticipated new single, offers a more mature sound saturated in a live band feel with trumpets, saxophones, bass guitar, chimes and cowbells that recall the rich soul music of the ‘70s. JT’s falsetto channels the likes of GQ, William DeVaugn, the Chi Lites and Delfonics as he serenades his girl, promising to “show you a few things,” the perks of trading his old ways for this new grown and sexy “suit & tie sh-t.”

[Related: Hear Destiny's Child's New Song, "Nuclear."]

Jay-Z is equally happy to be in a state of bliss. As the Timbaland-produced track slows down, gets nasty and slurred for his rap verse, the “Empire State Of Mind” MC pays respect to his in-laws, adding “they didn’t lose a daughter got a son.”

In an open letter posted on his website, Timberlake, who wed long-time girlfriend actress Jessica Biel in October, discussed what influenced his forthcoming album, The 20/20 Experience. “It is full of inspiration that I grew up listening to and some newfound muses that I’ve discovered along the way,” he said.

Though Timberlake has been focusing on acting, appearing in films like The Social Network, Friends With Benefits and Bad Teacher, he said the inspiration for the new album came out of the blue.

“I just went into the studio and started playing around with some sounds and songs,” he said. “It was probably the best time I've had in my career... Just creating with no rules and/or end goal in mind and really enjoying the process.”

The 20/20 Experience is due out in 2013 on RCA Records.

Follow me on Facebook, Twitter.