Jack U And Justin Bieber Officially Drop 'Where Are U Now' Video

Skrillex, Diplo And Justin Bieber Unwrap ‘Where Are Ü Now’ Video

Justin Bieber fans powered the hashtag #WhereAreUNowMusicVideoTODAY to the top of worldwide trends on Twitter on Monday, ahead of the official, wide premiere of the “Where Are Ü Now” music video on ABC News’ Good Morning America.

The single is a collaboration between EDM titans Skrillex and Diplo (collectively, Jack Ü) and Justin Bieber, who wrote and sang the bittersweet banger. The track is the second cut from the Skrillex and Diplo Present Jack Ü, album which was released in February.

“Where Are Ü Now” (the single), has since generated over 140 million streams and picked up across-the-board approval. The track is certified platinum, gold, and silver, in different countries and is currently No. 15 on Billboard’s Hot 100 singles chart.

The Twitter trend indicates the preview of the video to Samsung+ users on Friday (which inevitably led to low resolution copies online) didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of Bieber fans to see the visual.

The most likely reason for that is fans wanted to clearly see the kaleidoscopic, graffiti art and painted imagery that explodes throughout the highly anticipated video. All the art seen was gathered during a three-day event at L.A’s Seventh Letter Gallery. Los Angeles-based rising artists, fans of Bieber, and/or Jack Ü, drew over video frames of the singer. Looking at some of the art, a few non-fans of Bieber rocked up too.

Pitchfork reports these contributions were curated by the directing duo Brewer, who turned thousands of art stills into the glorious visual now uploaded at Jack Ü’s YouTube page.

Check it out below.

A snippet of the art sessions is seen in the video, which kicks off with a camera pan of the gallery, before viewers are taken inside one of the stills.

Riots of color erupts over images, many of them ridiculing Bieber and treating his life as a source of entertainment. Some provocative messages are also seen. Meanwhile, plays on evocative lighting and close-ups of the singer at key moments create vulnerability amid the art mayhem.

Before the Good Morning America airing, the Biebs introduced the video in a pre-recorded link-up all the way from Sydney, Australia where he is attending a five-day Hillsong Church conference.

The 21-year-old heartthrob is also seen with Skrillex and Diplo in a behind-the-scenes feature.

It shows Bieber on the “Where Are U Now” video set, getting directorial instructions, and being put through his paces with dance choreographer Nick DeMoura.

Diplo and Skrillex released a statement as Jack Ü shortly after the rollout.

“We are being overwhelmed, in a good way, by the success of ‘Where Are Ü Now’ with Justin Bieber, so with the video we wanted to just take it back to the beginning of the record & essentially create an ode to our fans. Doing what we do, it’s entirely all about the fans,” it reads.

“We walk a fine line by being ‘famous’ and in the public eye but we are only here because of you, the fans.”

“Justin wrote this record during a tough time in his life and it comes to us that sometimes, as artists, we are also just objects and we have to take that as much as we have to use that to create. We all do this for you… respect that you put us here and it’s Ü that made the video.”

Justin Bieber
(Photo: The Biebs seen at an emotive high point in the music video)
Justin Bieber Gets Remade In Artists' Image In 'Where Are U Now' Music Video
(Photo: Justin Bieber gets the artist treatment in the psychedelic visual)

It remains to be seen how much of a bump the single gets following the video’s high profile unveiling. It will also be interesting to see if the release leads to pop culture discussions on the meta nature of the spectacular clip. Ironically, some of the initial tabloid reaction to the visual missed the point that it used art created by fans, non-fans, and artists, to produce a spectrum of perceptions of Bieber, which is a tangential reading of Diplo and Skrillex’s joint statement.

The “Where” visual isn’t some sanitized vanity vehicle. It pokes fun at and critiques Bieber. That makes it a courageous move for Jack Ü’s unlikeliest, and most stunning, collaborator to date.

[Images via Sony Records]

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