The airbrushed picture on the cover shows everything but her breasts (but of course that's okay, we've already seen her nipple on TV), and every now and again she intimates that we might want to get to know the real Janet Jackson - the person beyond the TV persona.
But coming from such a lifelong celebrity, the ploy Janet kicks off with on the funky title track is even less convincing than Jennifer Lopez claiming she's just Jenny from the Block. Because let's face it: being world famous, belonging to a celebrity family that, as comedian Denis Leary says, 'gives each other new heads for Christmas', and having so much money that your favourite way of relaxing is hanging out on a tropical island, isn't exactly regular girl 'n' da 'hood stuff. The little intros where she tells you how sensitive she is, how much she loves tropical climes and that her roots are in the country, are dull. Is the unnecessary, constant mentioning of your own name (what - in case your fans are dumb enough to buy someone else's CD by accident?), unavoidable on R&B flavoured Pop?
Maybe it is, like the profuse offerings of thanks to God, parents and other people who probably wouldn't approve of songs like the lusciously produced "Sexhibition", or the cutely teasing "Strawberry Bounce". That particular song features lyrics like Oooh baby let me be your playground, with the infectious chorus recorded so close to the mike that you can hear ever inch of her mouth moistly opening and closing as she breathily raps words like making me so horny. There are also graphic descriptions of how she'd like to get her man off in "Warmth", or get off herself in "Moist". This is not for kids. Neither is it as sleazy as you'd expect - probably because Janet sounds so incredibly in control. Yes, she's playing easy to get, but not helpless. Also, unlike Kylie, Janet doesn't overdo the grunting and panting, and is much more convincing for it. You may surprise yourself with how, er... physically you react.
And before you know it, it's suddenly over! You might think afterwards: That wasn't as good as the other times, and perhaps Velvet Rope or Control is a better bet, but Damita Jo is a damn good ride all the same.WHAT OTHER REVIEWERS SAID"Damita Jo heralds no real major leap forward, but it's no pig's ear either. A bit of editing and a couple of killer dance tracks would've made it even better. And although millions will remember what Janet Jackson did in 2004, it won't be for this album."- Ian Wade for BBC.co.uk
"For the most part, the songs are not only inventive, but brilliantly constructed. The hooks nag, the choruses are explosive. R&B is primarily a singles genre - even the peerless Aaliyah's albums were a bit of a slog - but Damita Jo's strike rate is remarkably high. It's triumphant stuff."- Alexis Petridis for The Guardian
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