Michael Jackson feat. The Notorious B.I.G. & Brandy – “Unbreakable” – (2001)

Invincible was Michael Jackson’s final studio album (strangely, as it came out in 2001). This was the lead track and it was never released as a single, although it’s pretty good and features a rap verse from The Notorious B.I.G. (who died in 1997). The rap verse was taken from a song by, who else, Shaquille O’Neal. Of course it was. (Brandy also contributed some background vocals). There’s nothing exceptional about this song except that its sound is very much definitive of Michael’s later work. I’m not sure how to explain this other than to dumbly say “you’ll know it when you hear it.” He makes a lot of popping sounds with his mouth, but other than that it’s just a feel thing. It’s a pretty sweet song, as were others on this album. It’s strange how they weren’t bigger. I think that has a lot to do with resistance for people to take it seriously as everyone figured he was “past his prime” which may have been true – but when you’re prime is Thriller, you have a very long way to fall before your work isn’t any good. Invincible isn’t Thriller – and doesn’t pretend to be. But it’s still good.