Michael Jackson, Michael
Official release date: December 14, 2010
The verdict: Finally, the 50 Cent–Michael Jackson collaboration is here! It’s called “Monster,” it’s one of the ten tracks on MJ’s freshly leaked posthumous album Michael, and it is, despite what may have been insinuated by the previous sentence’s snarky faux-excitement, not at all terrible (50 does a pretty decent impersonation of his pal Eminem while Michael gets all stompy and animated). In fact, Michael as a whole has more going for it than could have reasonably been expected from the initial leaked material: We also like “Hollywood Tonight,” a dance jam about the corrupting influence of showbiz, “(I Can’t) Make It Another Day,” a Lenny Kravitz–featuring rocker about unrequited love, and “Keep Your Head Up,” an emphatic, effective weepy ballad about a sad girl who doesn’t like her restaurant job. Also, on the intro to “(I Like) the Way You Love Me,” Michael dictates the sound of the song over the phone to someone — “okay, this is the tempo and this is the melody” [sings] “drums” [beatboxes] — before the actual track kicks in, and that’s pretty cool.