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New Michael Jackson album set for May release

'XSCAPE' will include eight new recordings from the late King of Pop

Michael Jackson is to release a new album of unheard music nearly five years after his death, his record label has confirmed.

Produced by Epic Records CEO LA Reid, the late King of Pop's XSCAPE is scheduled to drop on 13 May. 

Reid was granted exclusive access to Jackson's four-decade archive of musical material, before teaming up with Timbaland, Stargate, Rodney Jerkins and others to "contemporise" the tracks while keeping Jackson's "essence and integrity" intact.

"Modern music and artistry would look and sound completely different if not for the ground-breaking contributions Michael Jackson gifted to the world," said Reid.

"Michael left behind some musical performances that we take great pride in presenting through the vision of music producers that he either worked directly with or expressed strong desire to work with."

Eight new songs curated by Reid are promised, with a deluxe edition including some of the recordings in their original form.

The title of the album continues Jackson's tradition of using single words that are also the names of his songs ( Thriller, Bad, Dangerous).

"Michael was always on the cutting edge and was constantly reaching out to new producers, looking for new sounds," said John Branca and John McClain of the Estate of Michael Jackson.

"He was always relevant and current. These tracks, in many ways, capture that spirit."