Which songs on “Believe” are worth repeated listens? Check out Billboard‘s track-by-track breakdown of Bieber’s latest.
NOTE: This review done by Billboard !
01. All Around The World ft. Ludacris – Breathy vocals swirl around a beat that pierces the listener on first contact. Ludacris wraps in double-time as the album’s electronica obsession is immediately presented.
02. Boyfriend - One swaggy single to rule them all: Justin softly offers fondue recommendations and Buzz Lightyear metaphors on top of Mike Posner’s loopy production. What shouldn’t be one of the year’s strongest singles most certainly is.
03. As Long As You Love Me ft. Big Sean - A massive yet somehow intimate dance track, with the drums almost reaching hair metal levels in their vibrations. The Biebs handles his business, but Big Sean’s verse probably isn’t necessary.
04. Catching Feelings - Flush with guitar and drums, “Catching Feelings” is a showcase for Bieber’s blossoming voice to emote about butterflies in his stomach. “Could it be a possibility?/I’m tryin’ to see what’s up,” he sings, the lines feeling like wind through the listener’s hair.
05. Take You - Roboticized Euro-dance that sweeps through different tempos. After a “Hold It Against Me”-esque breakdown, the climax is cold and beautiful.
06. Right Here ft. Drake - Drizzy is right in line with Bieber’s screwed-up, pit-in-your-stomach romantic feelings, and even throws out similarly constructed warbles and ad-libs. Two young stars brushing love letters off their shoulders.
07. Fall - According to manager Scooter Braun, “Fall” was inspired by the weepy romance “A Walk To Remember.” Bieber tries to extract sorrow from the rumbling percussion, falling to his knees as layered vocals increase the melodrama.
08. Die In Your Arms - A supremely silly but wholly likable Motown riff, with the Biebs’ voice snapping right along with the piano flourishes.
09. Thought Of You - Diplo produced this epic, falsetto-driven ode to living in the moment; the song won’t stay still, its bass thickening around a series of futuristic movements until ending, somehow appropriately, with a piano and a siren.
10. Beauty And A Beat ft. Nicki Minaj - This playful electro-pop composition feels like a lost LMFAO single — but Bieber is too emo for RedFoo and Sky Blu’s detached sexuality. Nicki Minaj talks shit and rhymes ‘wiener’ with ‘Selener.’
11. One Love - Bieber’s dance assault relents for a second with a repetitive, synth-based sugar packet. With its cluttered drum patterns and random bass blasts, “One Love” musically coincides with the rest of “Believe,” but is a wee bit weaker.
12. Be Alright - A guitar ballad as a soothing lullaby, in which Bieber doesn’t try to over-sing his basic love lyrics. Straightforward but potent.
13. Believe - Hold your lighters up and sway from side to side — this one’s for you, fans! Bieber thanks the people who helped make him a super-duper-star with a clean, substantial anthem that plays out like a Disney song.
14. Out Of Town Girl - The most overtly sexual tone on the album, as Bieber engages in some tongue-wagging over an elastic rhythm. “All you gotta do is swag,” the young gun promises. It’s a (relatively) dangerous pose.
15. She Don’t Like The Lights - Those lights are, of course, popping camera bulbs, and Bieber ‘s vulnerability seeps through a wall of drums here. The production gyrates and shape-shifts until ending in an aggressive, entertaining pile-up.
16. Maria - The song that is not about Mariah Yeater, officially — but is definitely about Mariah Yeater. “Maria” is an electronic takedown of an obsessive fan, a mix of “Billie Jean” and a shot glass full of venom. A fascinating piece of pop drama, but why include it on such a positive album?
BELIEVE out June 18 & 19 in UK & USA.