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Janet Jackson - All For You

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All For You

Janet Jackson

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The Velvet Rope was a fairly bold move on Janet Jackson's part, as she got seriously sexy -- too serious, actually, since it had a fairly bitter tone, underscored by hints of perversity. Four years later, marked by one hidden marriage revealed through a divorce, Janet returned with All for You, an album that is as about sex as much as The Velvet Rope, yet there's a key difference -- it feels sexy, not pornographic. With her trusty collaborators Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis in tow, she's created a record that's luxurious and sensual, spreading leisurely over its 70 minutes, luring you in even when you know better. And there are certainly moments that make you wish you knew better. For one, it's plotted like The Velvet Rope, filled with skits and deliberately recalling the record with its obsession with flesh and how it builds on '70s soul and soft rock. This time around, instead of Joni Mitchell, she appropriates America's "Ventura Highway" for "Someone to Call My Lover," one of the record's best cuts, and "interpolates" Carly Simon's "You're So Vain" on "Son of a Gun," with Simon singing and...well, I guess you could call it rapping...right along. The twist is, this is an anti-music industry song and a particularly foul-mouthed entry on the album, sitting comfortably alongside another industry song, the slow groove "Truth." And that fills out the three main themes of the album -- divorce, industry, and sex -- with a little bit of love on the side. These keep things humming throughout this overly sultry, overlong album, which intrigues with its very texture even as it lulls at its length. After all, there's a lot to be said for texture, and All for You is alluring, easily enveloping the listener. Though it's hardly as explicit as The Velvet Rope, apart from a section where she proclaims "I just want to suck you, taste you, ride you, feel you, make you come -- come inside of me" (mind you, this album did not have a parental advisory sticker on its first pressings), this is her sexiest-sounding record, thanks to Jam and Lewis' silky groove and her breathy delivery, two things that make the record palatable throughout too many spoken interludes and songs that just don't quite click. Even if there is a fair share of filler, this is hardly as strained as The Velvet Rope (though in many respects, it's every bit as self-conscious), and there's an ease to its construction, topped off by such songs as "All for You" and "Doesn't Really Matter" that maintain Janet, Jam, and Lewis' reputation as the leading lights of contemporary urban soul. It'd be nicer if the album was leaner, concentrating on just the great songs, but indulgence is what this record encourages. Janet sprawls out throughout the album, indulging her whims, desires, and fantasies, but -- fortunately for us -- her indulgences are alluring in their self-absorption. Of course, it helps to have Jam and Lewis on your side to articulate your indulgence.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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All For You

Janet Jackson

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1
Intro/All For You/Janet Jackson
00:01:00

JIMMY JAM, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

2
You Ain't Right
00:04:32

Dana Stinson, Composer - Rockwilder, Producer, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Sweeney, Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - DAVE RIDEAU, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - Jason Rankins, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

3
All For You
00:05:30

Davide Romani, ComposerLyricist - Wayne Garfield, ComposerLyricist - JIMMY JAM, Producer - TERRY LEWIS, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Mauro Malavasi, ComposerLyricist - JAMES HARRIS, ComposerLyricist - JANET JACKSON, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America Inc.

4
2wayforyou (Interlude)
00:00:20

Wayne Garfield, Composer - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - Mauro Malavasi, Composer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - David Romani, Composer

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

5
Come On Get Up
00:04:48

Dana Stinson, Composer - Mike Scott, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Rockwilder, Producer, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Alex Richbourg, Drums, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Sweeney, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - DAVE RIDEAU, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - Jason Rankins, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Chris Seul, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Gale Guilarte, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

6
When We Oooo
00:04:35

Mike Scott, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Alex Richbourg, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Drum Programming, Asst. Recording Engineer, Programming, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jimmy Jam for Flyte Tyme Productions Inc, Producer, Executive Producer - Terry Lewis for Flyte Tyme Productions Inc, Producer, Executive Producer

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

7
China Love
00:04:36

Alex Richbourg, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Lee Blaske, String Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Daryl Skobba, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - John Kennedy, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Michal Sobieski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Sarah Lewis, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Kornacker, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Elsa Nilsson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Evelina Chao, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Sewell, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Lee Blaskey, String Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Fred Bretschger, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - Kim Kyu-Young, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nathan Cole, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Julia Persitz, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Charles Gray, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Alice Preves, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Joshua Koestenbaum, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Kathy Kienzle, Harp, AssociatedPerformer - Tamas Strasser, Viola, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

8
Love Scene (Ooh Baby)
00:04:17

Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Ashton, Engineer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Drum Programming, Asst. Recording Engineer, Programming, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jimmy Jam for Flyte Tyme Productions Inc, Producer, Executive Producer, Participant - Terry Lewis for Flyte Tyme Productions Inc, Producer, Executive Producer, Participant

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

9
Would You Mind
00:05:32

Dana Stinson, Composer - Mike Scott, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Rockwilder, Producer, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Hodge, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Ashton, Engineer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Chris Seul, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Gale Guilarte, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

10
Lame (Interlude)
00:00:12

JIMMY JAM, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, MainArtist - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

11
Trust A Try
00:05:17

Dana Stinson, Composer - Rockwilder, Producer, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Alex Richbourg, Drums, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Lee Blaske, String Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Daryl Skobba, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - John Kennedy, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Michal Sobieski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Sarah Lewis, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Kornacker, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Elsa Nilsson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Evelina Chao, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Sewell, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Franny "Franchise" Graham, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jimmy Jam for Flyte Tyme Productions Inc, Producer, Executive Producer - Lee Blaskey, String Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Terry Lewis for Flyte Tyme Productions Inc, Producer, Executive Producer - Fred Bretschger, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - Kim Kyu-Young, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nathan Cole, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Julia Persitz, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Charles Gray, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Alice Preves, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Joshua Koestenbaum, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - David Barry, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Tamas Strasser, Viola, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

12
Clouds (Interlude)
00:00:20

Carly Simon, Composer, FeaturedArtist - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

13
Son Of A Gun (I Betcha Think This Song Is About You)
00:05:56

Alex Richbourg, Drum Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Sweeney, Engineer, Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Carly Simon, Composer, FeaturedArtist - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Alex Al, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - DAVE RIDEAU, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, MainArtist - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jimmy Parr, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Mike Abbott, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jason Elmore, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

14
Truth
00:06:45

Stan Vincent, Composer - James "Big Jim" Wright, Composer, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Scott, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Alex Richbourg, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

15
Theory (Interlude)
00:00:26

JIMMY JAM, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Musician, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

16
Someone To Call My Lover
00:04:32

Dewey Bunnell, Composer - Alex Richbourg, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - David Barry, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

17
Feels So Right
00:04:42

Dana Stinson, Composer - Mike Scott, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Rockwilder, Producer, Drum Programming, Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

18
Doesn't Really Matter
00:04:25

Alex Richbourg, Drum Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

19
Better Days
00:05:06

Steve Hodge, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JIMMY JAM, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - TERRY LEWIS, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Musician, Participant, AssociatedPerformer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - DAVE RIDEAU, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JAMES HARRIS, Composer - Jason Rankins, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Lee Blaske, String Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Daryl Skobba, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - John Kennedy, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Michal Sobieski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Sarah Lewis, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Kornacker, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Elsa Nilsson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Evelina Chao, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Sewell, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Xavier Smith , Assistant Mixer, Drum Programming, Asst. Recording Engineer, Programming, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Brad Yost , Assistant Mixer, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Lee Blaskey, String Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Fred Bretschger, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - Kim Kyu-Young, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nathan Cole, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Julia Persitz, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Charles Gray, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Alice Preves, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Joshua Koestenbaum, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - David Barry, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Tamas Strasser, Viola, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

20
Outro
00:00:10

JIMMY JAM, Producer - TERRY LEWIS, Producer - Brian "Big Bass" Gardner, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - JANET JACKSON, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Mike Bozzi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2001 Virgin Records America, Inc.

Album Description

The Velvet Rope was a fairly bold move on Janet Jackson's part, as she got seriously sexy -- too serious, actually, since it had a fairly bitter tone, underscored by hints of perversity. Four years later, marked by one hidden marriage revealed through a divorce, Janet returned with All for You, an album that is as about sex as much as The Velvet Rope, yet there's a key difference -- it feels sexy, not pornographic. With her trusty collaborators Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis in tow, she's created a record that's luxurious and sensual, spreading leisurely over its 70 minutes, luring you in even when you know better. And there are certainly moments that make you wish you knew better. For one, it's plotted like The Velvet Rope, filled with skits and deliberately recalling the record with its obsession with flesh and how it builds on '70s soul and soft rock. This time around, instead of Joni Mitchell, she appropriates America's "Ventura Highway" for "Someone to Call My Lover," one of the record's best cuts, and "interpolates" Carly Simon's "You're So Vain" on "Son of a Gun," with Simon singing and...well, I guess you could call it rapping...right along. The twist is, this is an anti-music industry song and a particularly foul-mouthed entry on the album, sitting comfortably alongside another industry song, the slow groove "Truth." And that fills out the three main themes of the album -- divorce, industry, and sex -- with a little bit of love on the side. These keep things humming throughout this overly sultry, overlong album, which intrigues with its very texture even as it lulls at its length. After all, there's a lot to be said for texture, and All for You is alluring, easily enveloping the listener. Though it's hardly as explicit as The Velvet Rope, apart from a section where she proclaims "I just want to suck you, taste you, ride you, feel you, make you come -- come inside of me" (mind you, this album did not have a parental advisory sticker on its first pressings), this is her sexiest-sounding record, thanks to Jam and Lewis' silky groove and her breathy delivery, two things that make the record palatable throughout too many spoken interludes and songs that just don't quite click. Even if there is a fair share of filler, this is hardly as strained as The Velvet Rope (though in many respects, it's every bit as self-conscious), and there's an ease to its construction, topped off by such songs as "All for You" and "Doesn't Really Matter" that maintain Janet, Jam, and Lewis' reputation as the leading lights of contemporary urban soul. It'd be nicer if the album was leaner, concentrating on just the great songs, but indulgence is what this record encourages. Janet sprawls out throughout the album, indulging her whims, desires, and fantasies, but -- fortunately for us -- her indulgences are alluring in their self-absorption. Of course, it helps to have Jam and Lewis on your side to articulate your indulgence.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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