Justin Bieber bittersweetly asks “Where Are Ü Now” on the standout cut from the Skrillex and Diplo Present Jack Ü album, which the EDM titans unleashed one hour ahead of the expected arrival time on Thursday via the iTunes Store update.
In addition to uploading their album to SoundCloud, Skrillex and Diplo celebrated their big release by playing a 24-hour DJ set which is streaming here. [Update: The police allegedly shut the marathon down at around the 18 hour mark.]
The album drop follows the duo’s roll out of “Take Ü There” with Kiesza, then its stomping Missy Elliott remix. Other features besides Bieber on the 10-track Jack Ü record, includes “Febreze” with 2 Chainz and “To Ü” with Aluna George.
Earlier this month, Bieber’s joint with Jack Ü was the topic of intriguing tweets by DJs, with France’s DJ Snake dubbing the singer’s collaboration with Skrillex and Diplo as “record of the year.” As one might expect, “#Where Are Ü Now” became a worldwide trending topic on Twitter almost immediately after the album hit.
So what’s the song like? In four words: Intense, fresh, heart-rending, insistent.
Neither ballad or frantic head-banger, “Where Are Ü Now” seamlessly mixes both, setting its own strange pace as it reaches intermittent peaks highlighted with the lyric, “I need you the most.”
The delicacy of Bieber’s topline starts atmospherically with mournful piano underpinning a stutter intro. Once begun, the 20-year-old’s strikingly beautiful vocals plead with a lover on the verses, asking, “Where are you now that I need ya?” then reminding them, “When you broke down I didn’t leave ya, I was by your side.”
A catchy, high-pitch synth hook bookmarks choruses, as the track dips and builds in grand style with swelling strings, bassy, tribal beats, and 808s, (hark, is that synth timpani?) amid Skrillex and Diplo’s imaginative, midtempo EDM soundscape.
No doubt, Bieber’s fans and media will speculate that the Canadian is singing to and about his former girlfriend, Selena Gomez. And he probably is.
The actress-singer recently featured on rumored boyfriend’s Zedd’s single “I Want You To Know.” However, it was a remarkably leaden affair compared to the genuinely, fire hybrid of Bieber’s haunting vocals and intense lyrics and the progressive, hot production of Jack Ü.
“Wrote a song. #JackU @Skrillex @diplo #WhereAreÜNow,” Justin tweeted late Thursday, before retweeting the link to the DJ’s streaming 24 DJ set.
Meanwhile, Diplo and Skrillex’s social media timelines are now joyful explosions of Jack Ü-related promotion. Elsewhere, all over the internet, fans of Bieber and the DJ’s are making their definitely (mostly) appreciative feedback on the new song known.
Let us know in comments below what you think of Skrillex and Diplo’s “Where Are Ü Now (Feat. Justin Bieber)” slayer.
— literally your boy (@HowToDressWell) February 27, 2015
— Kristina (@blueraincoats) February 27, 2015
— Michelle Phan (@_sheeell) February 27, 2015
— Tyler Carter (@TylerCarter4L) February 27, 2015
#4 on the dance charts not even a single no promo yk yk and the lyrics on point pic.twitter.com/bFrINnGuUU
— Daika (@daika04) February 27, 2015
— Fatimah (@Ellisande_) February 27, 2015
— Brin McClory (@BrinMcClory) February 27, 2015
— InVy (@InVyvy) February 27, 2015
I feel blessed! Where Are Ü Now is such a banger!
— Mar-NoChill-ia (@noncisonofate) February 27, 2015
— Susan (@_SusanJB) February 27, 2015
Wow the song is soo good!! His vocals are amazing
— Hanne (@kidrauhl_hanne) February 27, 2015
Beliebers listening to Justin's new song pic.twitter.com/ng8w47H5Pi
— chrissy (@flyonbieber) February 27, 2015
@MrRagerx TOLD Y'ALL
— DJ SNAKE (@djsnake) February 27, 2015
I have been playing it for the past 3 hours #WhereAreÜNow
— christopher oneal (@chris98bizzle) February 27, 2015
— Justin Bieber (@biebxsmile) February 27, 2015
Where Are U Now (feat. Justin Bieber) is by far my favorite track on the new Jack U album. So beautiful
— Direct (@DirectOfficial) February 27, 2015
— Steve Kopec (@Kopec) February 27, 2015
kinda frightening how enjoyable this Jack U / Bieber collab is
— Mike Waite (@satellitesnyper) February 27, 2015
— Talent Nation (@talentnation) February 27, 2015
[Images via WENN]