New Michael Jackson album out next month

“Xscape,” featuring eight new tracks from the late King of Pop’s archive, will be released on May 13.

“Xscape,” featuring eight new tracks from the late King of Pop’s archive, will be released on May 13.

CALIFORNIA, United States, Thursday April 3, 2014 – Almost five years after his death, the King of Pop’s reign is not over, with a new album, featuring eight new tracks from his archive, due for release on May 13.

Titled “Xscape,” the track listing was chosen by Epic Records chairman LA Reid, who combed through four decades of Jackson’s demos and off-cuts.

The tracks were subsequently updated – or “contemporized,” according to Reid – by the likes of Stargate, who have produced Rihanna and Beyonce, and Timbaland, who works with Justin Timberlake.

“Michael left behind some musical performances that we take great pride in presenting through the vision of music producers that he either worked directly with or expressed strong desire to work with,” Reid said, adding, “We are extremely proud and honoured to present this music to the world.”

“Xscape” is the album’s only track to be reworked by its original producer, Rodney Jerkins, who worked on the sessions for Jackson’s final studio album “Invincible” in 2001.

Other producers involved in the project include McClain and Jerome “J-Roc” Harmon.

A deluxe edition of the album will feature the eight tracks in their original form alongside the remixed versions.

John Branca and John McClain, co-executors of Jackson’s estate said: “Michael was always on the cutting edge and was constantly reaching out to new producers, looking for new sounds. He was always relevant and current. These tracks, in many ways, capture that spirit. We thank LA Reid for his vision.”

Jackson had dozens of hits during a career that began in childhood with the Jackson 5. His biggest solo hits included “Thriller,” “Beat It,” “Billie Jean,” “Bad” and “Man in the Mirror.”

One previous album of unreleased material, titled “Michael,” was released in 2010, a year after the singer’s death from an overdose of the anaesthetic propofol.

The album included “Hold My Hand,” a duet with R&B singer Akon which was almost complete at the time of Jackson’s death, and a cover of Yellow Magic Orchestra’s “Behind the Mask,” which dated from the 1980s. Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)