The album was originally intended to be titled Symphonized and recording sessions began at Jay Kay's home studio in 1998 with Stuart Zender still on bass. About 9 tracks were written and recorded, but Zender left partway through the recording in late 1998 over a dispute of album credits. Rather than credit Zender for the tracks he had played on, Jay Kay hired a replacement, Nick Fyffe. Kay decided to scrap all the tracks and start the album over. The new project was called Synkronized and the whole album was finished and released within 6 months. Clips of two of the tracks from Symphonized which Zender played on were shown on MTV before the 1998 MTV Video Music Awards, prior to Zender's departure, in a segment looking back at past winners. The clips display a much more Latin and fusion sound than the songs that made it on the final album track listing. An outtake from Synkronized, "Snooze, You Lose", was later released on the mini-album "An Online Odyssey". "Where Do We Go From Here?" was described[who?] as the point of change within the group's sound, using rocks with a leap-frogging blues piano and tangy bongos. The final song on the album, "King For A Day", is a regal rock-operatic excursion embellished with fully orchestrated piano and strings, with lyrics relating to Stuart Zender. It is noticeable that there is no bass guitar or bass synth sound within the song. Didgeridoo player Wallis Buchanan made his last appearance on the song "Supersonic".
The UK version of the album includes the bonus track "Deeper Underground", which was released as a single the previous year and became Jamiroquai's only number one single in the UK.
Rolling Stone gave the album 3 out of five stars, claiming "Synkronized is fifty minutes of sleek, sexy fun, a party album delivered with something like conviction. It's not exactly irresistible, but, really, what's the point of resisting it?"Spin gave the album the same rating, claiming "...redirects the band's British tendency toward smoothed-out old black jams....soaring strings, gyrating congas, hell-bent wah-wah's, and an undeniably live rhythm section that'll hustle your muscles and make you freak to the beat..." Entertainment Weekly claimed "Imagine if [Stevie] Wonder had made a disco album in 1977!....Synkronized is a hat trick done with the sharpest chapeau in the store."College Music Journal claimed "This incessantly upbeat expedition travels into the regions of Travolta-era disco...feverish funk...and instrumental iridescence...keeping your ears tuned to their funktastic audio adventures." Mojo claimed "Synkronized proves Jamiroquai...are capable of knocking up fluid and thrilling grooves at the drop of an enormous hat....Jay's voice is wonderful throughout, delivering his admittedly toe-curling lyrics with...conviction." Q magazine claimed the album was one of the "50 Best Albums of 1999". In his consumer guide for The Village Voice, critic Robert Christgau gave the album a C– rating in his annual "Turkey Shoot", indicating "a bad record of some general import".
^Q (7/99, pp.102-3) - 4 stars (out of 5) - "...[consolidates] the group's irrepressibly catchy old-skool funk with something darker and stranger....the most obtuse and best things the band have put down..."
^Spin (8/99, p.154) - 6 (out of 10) - "...redirects the band's British tendency toward smoothed-out old black jams....soaring strings, gyrating congas, hell-bent wah-wah's, and an undeniably live rhythm section that'll hustle your muscles and make you freak to the beat..."