Industry sources are now projecting that the pop star’s album will sell over 800,000 copies by the end of the tracking week on Sunday, March 24. It will easily secure Timberlake his second No. 1 solo album on the Billboard 200. The new chart’s top 10 will be revealed on Wednesday, March 27. [Billboard]

SPECTACULAR. The bad reviews go from hilarious to just plain stupid and all are rooted in the sad fact that these professional listeners and dissers don’t know an musical auteur when they hear him.

The most accurate take comes from the AP’s Mesfin Fekadu: “Near Perfect.”

Boy did he test our patience. But boy, is he rewarding us for the wait.

After seven years, Justin Timberlake has finally released his third album, “The 20/20 Experience,” and it’s a brilliant piece of work that plays like a musical movement. The 10 tracks (which average seven minutes) weave into one another beautifully as his falsetto glides over each beat. It’s an unconventional adventure that makes your bones groove. Seriously.

It’s hard to think of another performer who can make a seven-minute track continuously engaging and refreshing, especially at a time when a five-minute song screams “problem” for radio stations and our attention span gets shorter with every tweet or text. One of the standouts of the album is the eight-minute event called “Strawberry Bubblegum.” It’s smooth, airy and full of sexual innuendoes, and it transitions into something that’s heaven-like.

The negative reviews are expected, because to give the former Mouseketeer and boy band man credit, while he slays audiences from SNL to Jimmy Fallon, and even gets a nod from Jon Hamm on style, would be to give credit to a phenom, which just wouldn’t be cool.

Bitching about lyrics? Seriously? The arrogance of 7-8 minute tracks? JT’s “20/20 Experience” is musical. It is audacious. It’s even lush, sublime at times.

Though I have several tracks of “FutureSex / LoveSounds” mixed into my gym crunch playlist, JT’s “20/20 Experience” is its own playlist, the whole CD a keeper.

…AND for those not keeping up, it’s only the first half of the musical auteur’s release. That’s just down right ballsy. Fearless.

TM NOTE: The label of “musical auteur” for JT was written in other articles on the web, the origin unknown, but is wholly deserved.