The impending 30th anniversary of September 1989’s Rhythm Nation 1814 (12x platinum worldwide) by Janet Jackson, featuring the hit singles "Miss You Much", "Rhythm Nation", and "Escapade", will be properly recognized with a first-time 2xLP standard-black upgrade that restores the album’s previously missing interludes and unedited tracks.
Although label executives wanted material similar to her previous album, Control (1986), Jackson insisted on creating a concept album addressing social issues. Collaborating with songwriters and record producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, she drew inspiration from various tragedies reported through news media, exploring racism, poverty, and substance abuse, in addition to themes of romance. Although its primary concept was met with mixed reactions, its composition received critical acclaim. Jackson came to be considered a role model for youth because of her socially conscious lyrics.
Noted for its use of sample loop and utilizing swing note and synthesized percussion throughout its production, the album encompasses a variety of musical styles, such as new jack swing, hard rock, pop, dance and industrial music. The songs range from mechanized dance rhythms to soft balladry, giving it appeal across multiple radio formats. It became the singer's second consecutive album to top the Billboard 200 albums chart in the United States. Certified six-times platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), it became the country's best-selling album of 1990 and has sold an estimated 12 million copies worldwide. Due to its innovative production and lyrical exploration, critics have come to regard it as the pinnacle of Jackson's artistic achievement. It has been cited as an influence in various musical trends, inspiring numerous artists.