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  • Janet - Control

    Originally posted by Yoshie
    I keep researching a number of live performances, music videos and interviews from around the CONTROL era as, though it isn't my favourite Janet album, I have loved listening to the album and its spin offs today. I am shocked that such a classic album doesn't already seem to have a thread. If you guys would like me to produce a portfolio, an archive of 'things', we'll say, from the CONTROL era, including possible remixes from the single releases, please let me know in the comments section. This thread already has a nice number of views, which suggests that people are interested, but I will only do this if enough people are interested. If it gets a good response, I may do the same thing with other records that I have posted threads of, including others that I may post in the Retro forum in the future. I keep researching things from and about the CONTROL era, only to not fully edit it because this post hasn't received enough attention and/or comments yet.
    CONTROL



    ORIGINAL PRESSING

    Control
    Nasty
    What Have You Done For Me Lately?
    You Can Be Mine
    Start Anew [Japanese track]
    The Pleasure Principle
    When I Think Of You
    He Doesn't Even Know I'm Alive
    Let's Wait Awhile
    Funny How Time Flies (When You're Having Fun)

    CONTROL: THE REMIXES

    ORIGINAL PRESSING



    UK



    ORIGINAL PRESSING

    Control [Video Mix]
    Nasty [Extended]
    Nasty [Cool Summer Mix Part 1]
    What Have You Done For Me Lately? [Extended Mix]
    When I Think Of You [Extra Beats]
    When I Think Of You [Dance Mix]
    Control [A Cappella]
    Let's Wait Awhile [Remix]

    UK PRESSINGS

    CD

    Control [Video Mix]
    When I Think Of You [Dance Mix]
    The Pleasure Principle [Long Vocal Remix The Shep Pettibone Mix]
    What Have You Done For Me Lately? [Extended Mix]
    Nasty [Cool Summer Mix Part 2]
    Let's Wait Awhile [Remix]
    Nasty [Cool Summer Mix Part 1]
    The Pleasure Principle [Dub Mix The Shep Pettibone Mix]

    CASSETTE

    Control [Video Mix]
    When I Think Of You [Dance Mix]
    The Pleasure Principle [Long Vocal Remix The Shep Pettibone Mix]
    What Have You Done For Me Lately? [Extended Mix]
    Nasty [Cool Summer Mix Part 1]
    Let's Wait Awhile [Remix]
    Nasty [Cool Summer Mix Part 2]
    The Pleasure Principle [Dub Mix The Shep Pettibone Mix]

    VINYL

    Control [Video Mix]
    When I Think Of You [Dance Mix]
    The Pleasure Principle [Long Vocal Remix The Shep Pettibone Mix]
    What Have You Done For Me Lately? [Extended Mix]
    Let's Wait Awhile [Remix]
    Nasty [Cool Summer Mix Part 2]

    MORE CONTROL

    SPECIAL JAPANESE PRESSING



    What Have You Done For Me Lately? [Extended Mix]
    Nasty [Extended]
    When I Think Of You [Dance Mix]
    Control [Extended Mix]
    What Have You Done For Me Lately? [Dub Version]
    Nasty [Cool Summer Mix Part 2]
    When I Think Of You [Instrumental]
    Control [Video Mix]
    Let's Wait Awhile [Remix]

  • #2
    I have checked the search engine and also used the criteria on Google to look up if there is already a thread; I cannot find one. I spent a good fourty-five minutes of my hard earned time doing research and making this look presentable, so I am asking moderators with love and respect: if there is already a thread, don't be disrespectful to my time and if you must merge threads together, don't place a possibly already made thread above mine.

    More comments from me on these masterpieces later on. I previously dismissed these products to be a collection of radio ready hits, and although I always enjoyed all the songs, including the three album tracks, I discovered the magic of CONTROL while revisiting it this morning.

    Comment


    • #3
      I have edited the first post four times now trying to find images that are the same size and trying to find an image for MORE CONTROL that will work. I give up, so this is what it looks like:

      https://www.google.co.uk/search?newwind ... 6M#imgrc=_

      Edit: OH! It did work. It's just my laptop playing silly.

      Control: The Remixes is definitively better than Control. I must track these probably very rare UK and special Japanese pressings down, so I can have everything from it. She should've just made a double-disc set with all the tracks on it, with each disc running at EP length. It's more iconic than its own legendary parent album.

      Comment


      • #4
        I love Control! Every song an utter masterpiece. It's one of those albums you just have to play all the way through.
        I have the UK version of the remixes its alright. I love the Shep Pettibone remix of Pleasure Principle and the Dance mix of When I Think of You, wish it had included Start Anew(but just on the remixes as it's a bit too pop for the actual Control album)


        Nice work on the thread Yoshie
        There is a light at the end of the tunnel... hopefully its not a freight train! - Mariah Carey

        Comment


        • #5
          JANET JACKSON: CONTROL (1986); CONTROL: THE REMIXES (1987) & MORE CONTROL (1987)
          Track-By-Track Commentary & Overview

          On 4 February 1986, a then almost unknown Janet Jackson released her breakthrough studio album CONTROL. It followed up her two lesser known albums, the self-titled debut JANET JACKSON (1982), which produced the number six-peaking R&B chart hit Young Love. After this, DREAM STREET (1984) was released to no success, producting no hits and peaking at a lowly number one-hundred and fourty-seven on the US Billboard 200. Her debut had faired better in the years prior to DREAM STREET, with JANET JACKSON peaking at sixty-three on the same chart; whilst Janet's brothers as Jackson 5 had experienced hits from the age of five, with American and International superstar Michael having launched a successful solo career that gave birth to his commercial and critical successes OFF THE WALL (1979) and; the world's largest selling album of all-time: THRILLER (1982), which spanned seven top ten singles and spent a mammoth thirty-seven weeks at #1 on the Billboard 200.

          By 1986, Michael had began working on his BAD (1987) record, which would achieve similar success to THRILLER, achieving a record-breaking five number ones consecutively -- a record not broken until late January 2012 when newcomer Katy Perry released her own breakthrough record TEENAGE DREAM (2010). Michael had big plans for the world, but little did that same world know that 'MJ's little sister' would do one better than Michael with CONTROL: she enlisted producers Jimmy Jammy and Terry Lewis to co-produce her breakthrough album, also hiring two other sets of producers to rework two of the demo recordings. Disregarding the Billboard Hot 100 chart, where CONTROL produced five top five singles, including a number one (and another top fifteen), CONTROL produced six number one hits -- a chart success accounting for all of its American single releases. (Had the duet with Herb Alpert Diamonds -- also a Jimmy-Terry production -- been included on the record (and it certainly had a home on the album), it would've produced seven number ones, the most chart toppers that the chart world ever saw until the release of its follow-up JANET JACKSON'S RHYTHM NATION 1814 (1989). Janet Damita Jo Jackson was ready to stick her snarling, savvy writing in the world's face, but charts were not her main ambition: her primary desire was to show the world her feminist, sexual abstinence. And the world had no clue.

          Control
          Believe it or not, this favoured, huge number five US Billboard Hot 100 hit, which peaked at number one on other American charts, isn't one of my favourite songs from the record; as great as it is. I love the Prince-influenced production and, most of all, that classic spoken introduction. However, I think that the album's title track tends to repeat certain musical effects in the song, which creates a pattern of repetition that could be taken out or, rather, shortened so that the song wasn't six minutes long. The Video Mix on CONTROL: THE REMIXES (1987) and MORE CONTROL (1987), however, is the BARNSTOMER that the album version isn't...quite. It contains a much more layered and energetic musical arrangement in comparison to the somewhat stripped back album recording. It loses Control's most exciting feature, and would be the best song out of all these songs with a score of 11 (!) if the iconic spoken foundation which, already in the first thirty seconds of the record establishes Janet's plea for acceptance, had been kept in the soundtrack to the video reworking. The much quieter A Capella version on the spin-off albums is interesting and, at a more appealing shorter length, gives a sometimes surprising outlook on one of our generation's legacy artist's underrated vocals. [Original -- 8; Video Mix & A Capella -- 10]

          Nasty
          A really fantastic song. One of my favourite Janet singles, and has been ever since I was a baby and bought (the terrible, wasted opportunity) DESIGN OF A DECADE (1995). Nasty peaked at number three on America's Hot 100, with number one peaks on other charts, and it's easy to understand why: the harmonising and sharp, snappy vocals and lyrics are fabulous, and it has an amazing dance break and outro. I love the effect of the hooligan men shouting in the background and the background vocals by the women (and is that Paula Abdul singing -- who, of course, directed the video and won a VMA for her chereography for the video?) -- really nice touch. In many, many ways, a delicious, perfect pop-R&B song. The extended remix is great; despite being six minutes long, it's not too lengthy like the album version of its preceding track, and the Cool Summer remixes are fantastic, albeit a little long and repetitive; in comparison to the rest of CONTROL: THE REMIXES and MORE CONTROL, they offer an entirely different version of Nasty. Surely they are some of the first remixes, like its parent album which, I think was the first remix album in the pop-R&B sector to be released, to use an entirely opposing production in a remix in comparison to the original rendition. [Original & Extended -- 10; Cool Summer Mixes -- 9]

          What Have You Done For Me Lately?
          Another one of the best songs here, but then again this is an album with zero filler (except for the still-good Japanese bonus Start Anew). Lately peaked at four on the Hot 100, and at number one on a selection of other US-compiled charts. The instrumental dance break in the song's outro is truly outstanding, one of the record's highlights, not lengthy at all; and obviously meant for one of the greatest dance breaks that the music video world has seen. This song introduced the universe to 'It's Janet! Miss Jackson if ya nastEH!', and is a stunning template of exempalry 80s pop. Both the Extended Dance Mix on CONTROL: THE REMIXES as well as the Dub Version on MORE CONTROL -- which, being a dub reworking, contains only an effect on Janet's vocals from the original version (and can also sometimes, but not regularly, relate to an instrumental recomposition), are as good as the original. [All -- 10]

          You Can Be Mine
          This song begins the bubblegum pop section of the record: it contains a six-note opening that is similar to CONTROL's lead single. Jimmy and Terry lose a bit of credit on this song for this but, on the other hand, it positions You Can Be Mine in the perfect place. The song's instrumental outro is also similar to Lately though, except for this, I can't criticise Janet's late-teens songwriting or Jimmy's and Terry's production. It was never going to be a commercial release amongst other greater, more appealing songs, but it's still a perfectly good pop track that was innovative for its time. [8]

          Start Anew
          I believe that the extended/full length version of Start Anew should've been included on CONTROL: THE REMIXES and MORE CONTROL, but it's an underrated track that doesn't seem to receive much attention from fans. It was originally recorded for Janet's DREAM STREET (1984) record, and was edited for inclusion of the original Japanese pressing of CONTROL. The six-plus minute rendition improves on the edited and skimpy version that Japanese fans -- as well as those who bought the 12" rendition on import -- heard, but I'm sure it is agreed that Janet was right to take this off the record. (Start Anew was released as a stand-off single in Japan, 1985.) Still good, though, particularly in its full length/extended rendition. It is worth noting that this is one of two tracks from CONTROL that wasn't produced by Jimmy and Terry, so perhaps this explains why it was left off the main record. [Original -- 6; Extended/Full length -- 7]

          The Pleasure Principle
          A track that was released as the last official worldwide single, Principle was not as successful as the previous five singles, peaking at fourteen on the Hot 100 -- although it did peak at one on other US charts -- and I do understand why it didn't receive as much attention as the other hits. See my analysis of Control for the same opinion of The Pleasure Principle; the edit recorded specifically for DESIGN OF A DECADE is better, and one of the only great things about that hot mess compilation! In comparison to other singles, as well as other album tracks on CONTROL, Principle's music is light and fluffy, making a great pop song; albeit one that we were not used to hearing from Janet after the album's first two hard-hitting singles. Ultimately, it was, however, a good follow-up to the similarly bubbly When I Think Of You and Let's Wait Awhile duo, which were released as CONTROL's third and fourth singles. The Shep remixes are great and an improvement on the original. This is the other track that, surprisingly, wasn't produced by Jimmy and Terry, which is strange because the song itself has exactly the same vibe as the rest of the album production-wise. [Original -- 8; Shep Pettibone Remixes -- 10]

          [Diamonds [Herb Alpert & Janet Jackson]
          An underrated duet that should've been included on the record and in exactly this place. This is a great track and every remix is fantastic. A Jimmy and Terry production which is true to all their work, Diamonds is an excellent R&B-disco bop which is only forgotten by Janet's fans. Herb Alpert's record that Diamonds was eventually a hit single from, hitting number one on the R&B chart, the Dance/Club chart, maxi singles chart and at five on the Hot 100, was released on 13 February, according to Wikipedia, just nine days after CONTROL's initial release. Maybe the fact that it wasn't included was due to a copyright contract; maybe it was because Janet was only a feature. Either way, the song is excellent, definitely good enough to be on the album, and it works very well in between The Pleasure Principle and When I Think Of You. It wasn't as successful worldwide as it was in the US, but Diamonds was included on her NUMBER ONES (2009) two-disc set -- rather than CONTROL (which is why I have put the song in brackets) -- a far superior companion to DESIGN OF A DECADE. The remixes on the maxi single are excellent and also should've been on the spin-offs. [All -- 10]]

          When I Think Of You
          My favourite song here. I have seen comments, mostly on other forums, that state this is overrated, which perhaps partially comes from the fact that it was her first number one Hot 100 hit, whereas songs that they perhaps consider to be superior charted lower and received less attention at the time of the release of the singles. It's, like Nasty, another perfect song here. The Extended Mix is interesting because it shows the the composition of the song more eagerly than the album version: the piano solo and notes at the end are particular examples of this, however the track seems to fade to an end abruptly; whereas the Bonus Beats is an inspired choice for CONTROL's spin-off records, but, again this short track shows how important remix composition was, in that producers were making a different version of the track in comparison to how the original track sounded. The instrumental is brilliantly fantastic -- a really inspired piece of 80s pop. In 1995, well-respected house DJ David Morales remixed Think for Janet's 1995 number one hit Runaway (number three on the Billboard Hot 100). [All -- 10]

          He Doesn't Even Know I'm Alive
          A short and sweet track which closes out the bubblegum R&B-pop section of the record, Alive is the perfect follow-up to Think, featuring a lovely sax note which should play a larger part in the track. That's all I can criticise here. Good teen-pop track, the sort that I could've seen Kylie, Madonna or even Britney recording during their album recording sessions. Underrated. [9]

          Let's Wait Awhile
          A gorgeous ballad that shows us that the album is winding down, While is another of my favourite Janet singles that could potentially be in my top ten favourites of Janet's commercial releases, alongside Think and Lately, and possibly even Diamonds too. It peaked at number two on the Hot 100, as well as number one on other US charts. Musically, it is a perhaps typical -- classic, rather -- soggy ballad, although lyrically it is interesting: it is a song about abstaining from sex, a viewpoint that Janet would strongly juxtapose with her image of sexual freedom in her later career, provocative photoshoots and tight, saucy music videos. The remix is beautiful; I have read and heard that radio stations chose to sometimes play this version over the original. The reworking can sound dated, but that doesn't stop it from being a great remix of a fantastic, classic song. [Both -- 10]

          Funny How Times Flies (When You're Having Fun)
          The perfect closure for the album, this was released as a promotional-only single in the United Kingdom and in Ireland; although it didn't chart well (peaking inside the top sixty in the UK), it is not underrated by fans, with Janet's supporters recognising it as a great composition. Janet's mum said that she didn't appreciate the moaning at the end of the record (hahaha), but it gives an interesting twist to an album that quietly but confidently comments on sexual feminism. Other than a possible radio edit (I was born in 1992, so I wouldn't know if there is one), I don't think that any remixes of this were commissioned. [10]

          Funny is a great song that would prove to be a benchmark for how Janet would close out her following Virgin albums: she gave her audience a reply to While and Funny with the closure of her socially conscious JANET JACKSON'S RHYTHM NATION (1989) album (released on A&M Records before the star moved to Virgin) Someday Is Tonight; she would reveal her full sexuality on her opus JANET (1993) (stylised janet., an expression of Janet, period, in which the star of CONTROL began to drop her surname from future records); and would depressively go on to explore her sexual tendencies in what I, and many of the public and critics consider to be her greatest musical achievement, THE VELVET ROPE (1997). Janet relished in her sexualities in different ways on many of her albums that followed CONTROL: 2001's magnificent ALL FOR YOU; 2004's underrated DAMITA JO; 2006's 20 Y.O. and 2008's DISCIPLINE, the latter two albums which have hindered Janet's image just as much as her era-threatening Superbowl Wardrobe Malfunction. Did it ruin her actual career, or the legacy that CONTROL helped mould Janet into the artist that we know her as? I don't know if it did. I could make an argument that the interest in Janet wasn't there publicly around the time of DAMITA JO's release, which began in Janet's career with the mispromotion of ALL FOR YOU and even with the low sales debuts of THE VELVET ROPE around the world -- a swift movement that could have spoiled Janet's career; and just as much as CONTROL's following record, the masterpiece JANET JACKSON'S RHYTHM NATION 1814, furthered her legacy as an artist.

          The dated production on the RIAA-certified five-times-platinum CONTROL does the album no favours in the 2010s decade, when we are granted with a huge technological evolution that have given birth to the hi-fi and louder-than-ever speakers. On the whole, though, it is a musically and lyrically coherent record with a strong theme of female independence and underlying sexuality, that is both lyrically and musically coherent. Its composition no doubt makes for one of the best, most iconic 80s pop records that the world has witnessed. The remixes and reworkings presented on both the initial CONTROL: THE REMIXES album, which was available to purchase in various formats including compact disc, cassette and the much rarer vinyl, and special Japanese pressing MORE CONTROL -- which treat fans to more revampings -- are a constant reminder of how ever-changing the remix format has been through the many decades that have followed CONTROL's release: like the excellent Cool Summer versions of Nasty, the remix format in the 2010s now utilises a much more complex reworking of an original composition, and the magic of these extended and dub versions, as well as the wonder of the instrumental and bonus beats of CONTROL's biggest positional hit, When I Think Of You, seem as rare as the pressings of these products. These remixes demonstrate why the American and worldwide public bought these singles, helping them chart so highly when they were first released. Here, there are three brilliant products -- each of them not without their minor flaws -- that explain and describe so vividly why Janet Damita Jo Jackson went on to become a worldwide superstar, and why the American public remain fascinated with her life, and a groundbreaking career that has spanned four decades worth of hits; even after many personal and very public struggles, Miss Janet, having just released her eleventh studio record UNBREAKABLE (2015), is still in CONTROL. [CONTROL; CONTROL: THE REMIXES; and MORE CONTROL -- 9]

          I am a huge perfectionist when it comes to producing essays and creative writing. In any case, I hope that you enjoyed my review -- if you were patient enough to read through it all!

          Comment


          • #6
            Great review Yoshie. Surprised by your reaction to PP as it's my favourite on the album, but as I've said every song is a hit.
            There is a light at the end of the tunnel... hopefully its not a freight train! - Mariah Carey

            Comment


            • #7
              Loved your review Yoshie!
              It took me a while to get into Control as I used to feel like it was a lesser version of Rhythm Nation. However, it grew on me, even though I consider every album from Rhythm Nation to Damita Jo superior.

              Comment


              • #8
                Thank you, guys! I enjoyed writing it very much even though my back started to kill from lying in the same position for hours. All this for a Janet album that I never really liked that much until yesterday...

                I agree with you, Army; I like every record that she released from that time span more than CONTROL, as well as UNBREAKABLE, which took a while to grow on me -- and still is taking its time to make a full impression on me at the moment.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I think its harsh to complain that a nearly-30 year old album has dated production. Of course it doesn't sound current, it's nearly three decades old

                  The production is one of the selling points for Control. The big beats really separated it from the pack of what was on the chart in 1986 and made people took note. And I think the production of it continues to hold up, yes a relic of another era, but it still sounds phenomenal, I'd take it over the production of some of her latter albums which adhered to 2000's era production techniques I never cared for.
                  My top 100 artists (2018 edition)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Of course it does; the production on CONTROL and its remix spin-offs are outstanding, and if you read through my review thoroughly, you'll see that I have commented plenty on the great production and musical arrangements. It does sound dated, and it is a problem -- to me. Obviously not to you, which is fine; it makes no difference to my opinion.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      well, everything eventually becomes dated. In 2045 we'll be looking back on albums released today and talking about how quaint the production sounds. I personally preferred that sort of production because we didn't have tricks like autotune and pro-tools to "fix" things.

                      No different than watching movies pre-1990 before CGI made all effects easy to achieve.

                      IMO if you want dated 80s production that hasn't held the test of time, try Stock Aiken Waterman (of course there are exceptions for them like Bananarama's Venus and their work with Dead Or Alive). Control still packs a punch, whereas a lot of the SAW stuff from the late 80s really does sound generic and embarrassing now.
                      My top 100 artists (2018 edition)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I absolutely agree with you, and it's so strange to think that today's music could be considered dated in an amount of decades' time, what with the advancement of technology which we already have that seems to make music seem so crisp and fresh today. The sword cuts both ways, though; there are albums from this period that hold up so much better than Control, because for all the composition is amazing, what it needs is a true remaster -- not a shoddy, disappointing one -- that will bring out the true beauty in these arrangements, and the best in Janet's songwriting; her following albums from the big four don't sound nearly as dated; take for example Rhythm Nation, which doesn't sound awfully dated but could also do with a remaster. janet. is over twenty-two years old now and it could've came out yesterday; that's by far her freshest record that, so annoyingly, wasn't released on vinyl, and it's such a vinyl album. :-?

                        What are your thoughts on the remix albums and Janet's 2000s output? Is there an album out of those ranging from Control through to The Velvet Rope that you don't like as much, for example, and why?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by NothingFails
                          I think its harsh to complain that a nearly-30 year old album has dated production. Of course it doesn't sound current, it's nearly three decades old.
                          Exactly! The word 'dated' has been thrown around so often.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            It's been 30 years since Janet scored her first #1 with 'When I Think Of You'

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              My favorite Janet album!!!

                              I don't feel it sounds dated at all. I only discovered the songs from "Control" when I bought the Design of a Decade album, so that was 10 years later. But my friend says she only likes the songs with the visuals and that it all sounds the same and dated, so it might sound dated to some people.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I'm with NothingFails. Of course something produced over 30 years ago will sound dated. The technology was so different back then so it's going to sound like the time it came from.

                                But that doesn't lessen the quality at all. It may sound straight up 80s, but that's a good thing! The 80s crap all over the 10s!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I think this sounds dated in a good way, like "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" and "Billie Jean".
                                  Dated in a bad way would be something like Nippy's "Love Is A Contact Sport". That is too 80's cheezy for me

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Lol at "dated production", though. We're talking about production that was innovative and ahead of its time.



                                    Gone.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I still use "He Doesn't Even Know that I'm Alive". That is my jam.
                                      Originally posted by snoh aalegra


                                      - Ugh, those feels again

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by ThaInfo1
                                        I still use "He Doesn't Even Know that I'm Alive". That is my jam.
                                        +1. As well as Funny How Time Flies.
                                        See, I'm looking for a man that'll rub me slow, make me sing real high when he goes down low

                                        Comment


                                        • #21
                                          Originally posted by ThaInfo1
                                          I still use "He Doesn't Even Know that I'm Alive". That is my jam.
                                          Vocals are great!

                                          Comment


                                          • #22
                                            This is an awesome album but I can't get into the original version where the songs are over 9 minutes. I get bored quick especially with the song "Control". I am glad she did not go the Paula Abdul route as in a "one hit wonder".
                                            Madonna......Rihanna....Beyonce....Michael...Janet....Prince...Mariah...Whitney

                                            Comment


                                            • #23
                                              Everything about this is amazing!

                                              Comment


                                              • #24
                                                A Classic, all the songs are great.It contains my all time favourite Janet song to.

                                                Comment


                                                • #25
                                                  Gone.

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