June 30, 1997 12:00 PM

Michael Jackson

It’s hard to identify with the ghoulish spectacle Jackson has become, but he continues to evolve musically in a way that eludes most of his ’80s pop peers. His latest album includes dance versions of eight tracks from his 1995 album HIStory, most of which are no match for some of the thumping cuts that currently rule club music. But five new tunes are thrillers of the highest order. Jackson and his collaborators underscore his clenched-teeth vocals and seething lyrics (“Who gave you the right to shake my family tree/ Who gave you the right to…deceive me”) with tense arrangements punctuated with hyperkinetic, staccato percussion. (MJJ Productions/Epic)

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