Justin Bieber’s new album, titled ‘Believe’ has turned out as a pleasant surprise. I’m not sure what I was expecting, but as someone who definitely doesn’t belong to Justin’s target audience, I wasn’t sure it was going to be an album for me. And maybe it isn’t, but damn isn’t it enjoyable. ‘Believe’ has something for everyone. It has a typically produced Biebs song in ‘Catching Feelings’, and ‘Be Alright’ is just a voice and a rather lovely acoustic guitar, a simpler, more melodic track.
And then, we reach track 3, titled ‘As Long As You Love Me’ featuring Big Sean, a dub step track that suddenly EXPLODES on a chorus with a definite highlight on the robotized ‘lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-lo-ve-ME’. Big Sean steps in just when the song needs it and it only adds up to make the track absolutely incredible.
‘All Around the World’ is also very good: this time the featured artist is Ludacris and the genre is dance pop, with some synth breaks after every chorus that bit of extra adrenaline that any dance floor killer should have. Ludacris’ inclusion isn’t as necessary as Big Sean’s, but by all means it does its job.
‘Take You’ has a bit of a chilled latin flavor with the inclusion of some Spanish guitars on the verses, but without going over the top like other famous attempts. The chorus explodes in a very Enrique Iglesias way, I don’t know how to explain it, but the point is that this song is actually quite good as well.
‘Thought of You’ also has a catchy chorus, though that’s about it. ‘Believe’ is clearly a song for his fans and it’s sounds like Disney but without being Disney, skip. The next songs are ‘Boyfriend’, which I’ve talked about here, and ‘Die In Your Arms’, which I recently got obsessed with. ‘Out Of Town Girl’ sounds a bit like a Justin Timberlake album track: decent but sort of forgettable, and ‘Fall’ is also nice in a boring way. Also in the forgettable category would feature ‘She Don’t Like The Lights’ and ‘One Love’, and even ‘Right Here’, his track with Drake.
‘Maria’ is another interesting one. It starts with real audio from journalists talking about all that babygate, and the lyrics explicitly talk about that whole issue. In a way, this is Justin’s own ‘Billie Jean’: “Maria/why you wanna do me like that/(that ain’t my baby, that ain’t my girl)/Maria why you wanna play me like that/she aint my baby/she ain’t my girl” though less iconic and more real, of course.
‘Beauty And A Beat’ is another uptempo dance pop track, this time featuring a standard Nicki Minaj rapping moment, but with a great breakdown moment after the chorus as well, in the style of ‘Starships’, but without being that good.
Listen to: Be Alright, As Long As You Love Me, All Around The World, Boyfriend, Die In Your Arms, Maria, Beauty And A Beat
7,5/10 (mainly because the good tracks are very good)