By Liam McGurl @Liiiammm1996
After weeks of hearing Justin Bieber’s pulsating “What Do You Mean?” and EDM-heavy Skrillex and Diplo Collaboration “Where Are U Now” infiltrate every frat house basement and Ryan Seacrest show, fans were happy to get a new feel for the singer’s upcoming album.
First there was “Sorry,” then there was “I’ll Show You,” and now, “Love Yourself” has become our most recent Justin Bieber “jam-sesh” fix. While the 21-year-old singer’s newest installment, Purpose, is set for release this Friday, Bieber has teased the much-anticipated album with a melody of hard-hitting bangers and subtle ballads.
“Sorry”—which has scored over 94 million YouTube views—is arguably one of Bieber’s strongest tracks since his departure from tween stardom and his signature, masculinize bob. While “Sorry” is a major dance track, it features undeniably relatable lyrics fit for Bieber’s ever-growing diverse fan base. It is a genius marketing move—which is probably why it debuted at No.1 on its Oct. 23 release.
A few short weeks later, “I’ll Show You” was released with significantly less positive feedback. With a music video featuring Bieber running through a field, fans got a look at the newfound bad boy’s softer side. As hard as he has tried to fight off his childhood star reputation, “I’ll Show You” definitely gives us a taste of the Ontario native’s original aesthetic.
“Love Yourself,” Bieber’s newest teaser, is the definite middle-man in this series of singles prompting Purpose. Featuring soft vocals over guitar strumming, “Love Yourself” is carried by some of the cleverest, and blunt, lyrics seen from the trademarked “cheesy lyricist.” Singing, “My mama don’t like you and she likes everyone” and “Cause if you like the way you look that much/ Oh baby you should go and love yourself,” it is hard not to wonder if the track throws shade at on-and-off girlfriend Selena Gomez. Despite speculation, Bieber shut down rumors before the tracks release—telling Ellen Degeneres that he wrote three love songs about Gomez for his fourth studio album.
From the unexpected bass-drops of “Where Are U Now” to the sentimentality of “I’ll Show You,” it is clear that Bieber pulled out all musical stops for Purpose. The range of content he has exposed contributes to his consistent departure from “teen heartthrob” into “chart-topping artist.” From the looks of it, Purpose will be a personal and professional trademark album for Bieber—proving his talent extends beyond sub-par pop tracks.