First Hit #1: March 3, 2007
FutureSex/LoveSounds, apart from having a terrible title, is an album that seems to set out to prove that lyrics don’t matter. It’s not to say that the lyrics of What Goes Around… are bad, they’re more forgettable – this song exists, in many different forms, and I’ve written about it repeatedly. As a breakup song goes, it’s sung in a compelling way but the actual words are so generic that one could easily believe it’s a cover. Which isn’t to say that it’s bad, because it is well sung and it also has some great guitar work sprinkled throughout. It’s just that all the elements are there to serve material that isn’t particularly special. It’s acceptable, not exciting, a group of talented people trying to elevate something that simply isn’t worth the effort.
I think it’s telling that the video is a short film rather than a straight presentation of the song. The song itself isn’t that special, and Timberlake wanted to prove he was an actor anyway.