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It’s been seven years since wonder boy Justin Timberlake dropped an album. He gave us the Lauryn Hill treatment, ya know, creating a classic album then disappearing from music scene to carry on with his personal life. Although we were singing “My Love” and bringing “Sexy Back” way longer than we should have been, we have not waited in vein! Yesterday Justin’s new song “Suit & Tie”featuring Jay-Z titled hit the Internet. While we are all gassed, JT finally blessed us with a new track, #TeamBeautiful’s response to the 70s-inspired summer song is divided.

Deborah Bennett:

After 7 years of being M.I.A. JT is back with a banger! This song makes me want to put on a suit & tie! I can’t wait for the remix! You know it’s coming. Yes, it’s old school, but it’s what we’ve been missing in music and this girl is HAPPY that JT is bringing it back!

Shamika Sanders:

Eh, I’m indifferent–I could care less. I’m not looking to Justin Timberlake as the R&B savior. If I get a couple of good tracks out of his new album, I’m happy. The real topic that we should be discussing is why we just shouldn’t expect a good verse from my favorite rapper anymore. I love Jay-Z (let me emphasize it again, LOVE!), but even I can’t ignore how watered down and purposeless his presence as a featured artist has become. I never used to be able to say, “we could have done without that Jay-Z verse,” but now I don’t even make it through his 16 bars. I know what to expect before I even hear the rapper’s voice…Maybachs, Blue Ivy’s socks, Beyonce, “smoking cubanos with Castro in cabanas” and a bunch other sh*t my poor a** can’t afford. I’ll go out on a limb and say this though–I was almost excited about it when it first came on. I’m into the whole sexy chopped and screwed thing, but when it turned into a pop song Robin Thicke rejected in 2007, it just lost me. Harsh? Whatever. Carry on.

Leigh Davenport:

JT’s “FutureSexLoveSounds” brings back the most wonderful memories of 2006 for me. Back then, NYC nightlife was raging—I remember hearing “Sexy Back” on the radio and calling my girls insisting we go to Lotus Sunday night so we could hear it in the club.  I even managed to score amazing seats to the HBO taping of the tour at Madison Square Garden, so, to say that I’m a fan of JT’s music is a bit of an understatement.  You can imagine my excitement this morning when our darling Music Editor announced Justin had a new joint featuring Jay-Z. But upon first listen, I have to say I’m a bit underwhelmed.  I like the song a lot. It’s got a great sound, it’s fun and summer party appropriate, and evokes classic memories of Justin circa ’06.  But that’s exactly what makes it underwhelming–it sounds just like Justin circa ’06.  There was so much growth between JT’s 2002 debut album “Justified” and his 2006 follow-up “FutureSexLoveSongs,” the bar and expectations are high for his reentry to the music scene over six years later.  Unfortunately “Suit & Tie” feels more like an unreleased track from ’06 than the bold 2013 Justin I’ve been waiting for. And as far as Jay-Z is concerned, I think Jay-Z is just doing these to amuse himself these days.

Danielle Young:

I was honestly expecting something a bit nostalgic from JT–almost Jodeci-like, even before hearing the tune because of his old school way of having us wait up for it to hit the internet. When the song started in its very “Chopped & Screwed” sound, I frowned. I didn’t want to hear this type of emo/The Weeknd sound, but then the beat dropped. I love a good nod to the 70’s in a melody. The horns under Justin’s sensual, but funk falsetto excited me and immediately I was on roller skates, in my mind. But wait–it’s been a good seven years since we’ve heard Justin’s singing, so the comeback should be more than what he’d sound like if there had never been a Robin Thicke, right? I guess I’m expecting too much, but I want more of his growth since “FutureSex/LoveSounds.” The only thing missing from this being a Robin Thicke track is the absence of Lil’ Wayne. But I guess Jay-Z’s a good rap substitute. Every time I hear Jay’s gonna be on a track these days, I expect him to rap about things that only folks in his tax bracket understand. With the return of the chopped & screwed beat, Jigga hopped on Justin’s tune, rapping about “tuxedos for no reason” and other designer things. Just as expected. I can’t lie, this one line,”Tell your father we’d go farther as a couple” made me happy, but as the song ended with the slowed down beat with the same horns from the 70’s-inspired portion, I was brought back into the musicality of the song and started bobbing my head to it.

I guess that’s what being a grown and married man does to you–makes you put the needle on your old school records, dress to the nines in your “Suit & Tie” and boogie. I ain’t (all the way) mad.

Ty Alexander:

I’m not sure if I would consider Jessica Biel’s booty a fatty but the beat is hella catchy… circa 2006. Once I realized that Justin Timberlake was actually referring to his new wife, I admired the song a little more. I can imagine that six years out the game may have you a little rusty. Or perhaps it was just easier for him and Timberland to produce a track that would instantly be familiar to your ears.

I’m sure after the radio gets hold of this song it will be on repeat at every barbershop and hair salon. This time next month, I’ll find myself bopping my head to it on the 5 train on my morning commute to work. I’ll wait to form a real opinion until the rest of the tracks are leaked and then we’ll really see if this is just a duplication of “FutureSexLoveSounds”

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