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Crítica «FutureSex/LoveShow»: Glasgow

Justin Timberlake
SECC, Glasgow
****

Gone are the glo-sticks and deely boppers, replaced by an older, apparently more sophisticated Justin Timberlake fanbase, nodding appreciatively to electro funksters Unkle Jam. However, when the lights go off the hysteria switches on, and doesn’t let up for four songs. A pounding bass line announces the title track of FutureSex/LoveSounds, and the singer rises from the centre of a huge in-the-round stage.

Dressed down and up in box-fresh white trainers and a pale three-piece suit, the 26-year old effortlessly whips the audience on all sides into a frenzy by popping, locking, skipping and sliding his way around an incredible set.

Supremely confident, coyly metrosexual and incredibly light on his feet, Timberlake is a hypnotic performer who recalls a youthful Michael Jackson while always retaining his own boldly original style.

The meticulously choreographed show sees dancers, backing singers and instruments rotating and apparently teleporting around the stage. The former boy-bander grabs a guitar to attack the opening bars of his breakthrough hit Like I Love You, stalks his way through My Love and revels in the deafening call-and-response of Senorita.

However, the staging of Damn Girl is derivate, and a sly dig at Britney following Cry Me a River is mean rather than cheeky – but when SexyBack is your finale a little self-indulgence is probably allowed.

Sexy is back in Glasgow!
Thu May 3-Sat May 5
7.30pm
SECC, Glasgow
£40/£50
0870 040 4000

Sexy is back in Glasgow! Pop superstar Justin Timberlake returns to the SECC as much a global brand as a proper person; if you can’t make it along for these shows, you can always pay a visit to the local cinema and see him starring in Alpha Dog. Give it a few months and there’ll also be computer games, aftershaves, chewing gums, perhaps even modern art pieces created by Justin’s own fractured psyche, trying to envisage God as a ball of string perched precariously upon an old deckchair. Damien Hirst watch out.

But, for the time being, it’s the music, thankfully, taking centre-stage and it feels like an age since Timberlake was the cutesy curly-haired moppet grinning away gormlessly in ‘N Sync. Now a sleek, sultry solo star, last year’s sophomore album FutureSex/LoveSounds saw him hook up with producer Timbaland (a combination you could call Timbermud, if it didn’t sound like an insult) for the fantastic cyber-strut of comeback single SexyBack, four minutes and two seconds of peerless mechanical pop that seemed to have emerged vacuum-packed from a futuristic factory populated by disco-dancing androids.

The follow-up releases haven’t been quite as compelling but still command attention; What Goes Around was little more than an updated Cry Me A River, but garnered attention thanks to the video starring Scarlett Johansson, which led to questions about her and Timberlake’s relationship. It’s admirable that someone so seemingly ubiquitous has managed to stay so silent on his private life, no matter how much the media speculates; it’s just as well his music is good enough to deflect much of the attention back to where it should rightfully be.

Glasgow Evening Times
SEXY showman Justin Timberlake brought his spectacular FutureSex/LoveShow to Glasgow last night and whipped fans into a frenzy.

The SECC was filled with glow-sticks and furry cowboy hats as Mr Timberlake kicked off his three-night spell at the venue.

Gorgeous Justin appeared onstage to deafening, frenzied screams and the stamping of feet.

He launched into Future Sex/LoveSound flanked by scantily-clad girls, glamorous ladies and dapper gentlemen.

Towards the end of Like I Love You, the singer yelled: «What’s up Glasgow, Scotland? Sing it out to me! Let’s make some noise!»

He then enjoyed a steamy clinch with a dancer and fans grabbed at his trousers as he strutted into the crowd for Sexy Ladies – Let Me Talk To You.

Timberlake wooed every panting audience member with nifty moves in My Love.

He succeeded in making himself an honorary Scotsman as he said: «Do you Scottish audiences like to party or what? I love Scotland!»

After an interval, the star returned in a new outfit, complete with hat for a rocked-up Rock Your Body and asked the crowd: «How we doin’ so far?»

After being joined onstage by a virtual gospel choir for Losing My Way, Cry Me A River and LoveStoned – I Think She Knows propelled fans into the pulsating SexyBack.

Mr. Timberlake clearly loves and thrives upon all things sexy and with performances like this, his future looks sound.

Glasgow Herald

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