Justin Bieber is a singer and an artist. The two don’t necessarily go hand in hand, but with Bieber they’re intimate.
Of late, that’s been overshadowed by serious consequences for his behavior that resulted in pending legal challenges which served to distract people from his music. But the superstar is seemingly getting back to business, on Sunday teasing new material from Atlanta, Georgia, via Instagram video after previously tweeting he was “all about the music.”
Incidentally, Bieber’s Instagram account is no longer registered as Bizzle but has reverted to the singer’s real name, which may or may not be his way of answering rumors he is about to relaunch himself as a rapper.
Ostensibly, that rumor appears based on Bieber’s club night out with Mastermind maestros producer Sean “Diddy” Combs, artist Rick Ross, producer Jermaine Dupri, new mentor T.I. and more, two weeks ago.
— Mastermind (@rickyrozay) February 6, 2014
In the video the 19-year-old is joined by alleged DUI partner, R&B singer Khalil Sharieff, and longtime choreographer-creative director Nick DeMoura.
The trio are seen in a dance studio popping urban moves while Bieber unwraps 15 seconds of stark, syncopated sex music in the same vein as the darker end of the slow-jams on his December-releasing Journals album.
That album didn’t impact charts around the world anywhere like past Bieber albums. But for those who understand an artist and their music as a constantly evolving journey, Journals was an aural garden of digital delights.
One that packed as much musical progress as pathos on the Drake-penned “One Life,” salty dub of “Confident” featuring Chance The Rapper, the hot and heavy “PYD“ with fellow sex-adventurer R. Kelly, lush R&B of “Heartbreaker,” venal pain of “All Bad,” oddly joyous “Bad Day,” the gorgeous desolation of “Change Me,” to the trippy, vibrant hip hop of “Backpack” and “What’s Hatnin,” muscular soul-pop of “Memphis,” and more.
Journals is an quiet invitation to the real, inner psyche of an artist previously tethered to a clearly defined musical checklist. Don’t get me wrong, there’s plenty to love on My Worlds LP/EP (“Runaway Love“,”Up“), and Believe’s “Yellow Raincoat” is lovely.
But if you took the time to listen without prejudice as these reviewers did, Journals’ cathartic R&B-soul most likely left you feeling as if you knew the artist a lot more but still wanted more.
Ernest Baker called it a signifier album, promising much to come. He’s not often wrong.
Meanwhile, the recently declared bankrupt Drake Bell is still not playing a full song for nearly three minutes while explaining why he’s still not obsessed with Bieber, a terrifying two years after his unilateral Twitter attacks on the Canadian first inexplicably began.
Thoughts on the Bieb’s new song tease? Do you want to hear the full version?