Those of you who thought The Velvet Rope marked the end of Janet Jackson’s music-to-make-you-blush motif will be surprised, if not shocked, after listening to her new album, All for You.
Due out on April 24, the LP is dominated by two themes: the liberation that comes with ending a bad relationship, and sex.
On the sultry ballad “Love Scene (Ooh Baby),” Janet breaks out the F-word as she fantasizes about her partner “playing with [her] body”; even steamier is “Would You Mind,” in which the Grammy Award-winner paints a rather explicit lovemaking scenario before moaning until the song’s end.
Coming with a rougher edge, Janet teams with Carly Simon on a radical reworking of the latter’s “You’re So Vain” as “Son of a Gun (I Betcha Think This Song Is About You).” The track finds Janet – who is being sued for more than $10 million by her husband, Rene Elizondo Jr. – lashing out with “Thought you’d get the money too/ Greedy motherfucker/ Try to have your cake/ And eat it too” on the chorus, while Simon chimes in with words of wisdom throughout the song. “Truth” is less abrasive but still centers around heartbreak; she gets past being hurt to being angry and just wanting to move on.
The production on the album doesn’t stray far from Jackson’s previous outings, blending together elements of funk, pop, R&B and rock. Flyte Tyme team Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis – and Janet herself – produced the bulk of the album, with Rockwilder co-producing a few cuts.
In the liner notes of the album, Janet includes a note that reads, “Puffy, I love you. I miss you. You will always be in my heart.” The artist’s publicist was unsure whether “Puffy” refers to Bad Boy Entertainment CEO Sean “Puffy” Combs, newly christened as P. Diddy, or Jackson’s pet dog.