Despite a few appearances on tracks with Travi$ Scott (“Drunk”, along with Young Thug) and Diplo (on Jack Ü’s collaborative “Where Are Ü Now”), Justin Bieber has been pretty quiet musically. Recently turning 21, the Canadian-born pop superstar has seemingly diverted from his formerly childish ways, keeping a lower profile out of the public eye. However, this all changed as he began the campaign for his upcoming album.
King Bieber has not released a full project since his 2013 EP Journals, which displayed a grown, R&Bieber, consisting of features from R. Kelly, Future, and Chance The Rapper. It seemed as though Justin was moving away from the bubblegum brand of pop that had made him famous.
Late in February of this year, Bieber released a track with Diplo and Skrillex, “Where Are Ü Now”, which ended up on the latter pair’s collaborative album. The track, initially a warm-felt piano ballad, is an unexpectedly hard-hitting and dance-friendly track, which continued the trajectory of musical growth.
Such a path continued once Bieber began a countdown for a new solo song, indicative of a forthcoming fourth studio album. The song, which ended up being the late-summer smash “What Do You Mean”, became Bieber’s first number one single on the Billboard Hot 100.
Critically noted as the sequel to “Where Are You Ü Now”, “Mean” infuses pop and tropical-house, as Bieber utilizes a breathy vocal over the flute/synth/piano instrumentation.
Just this week, Bieber released both the album’s cover artwork and title, along with a pending release date. Purpose will see the light of day on November 13, with the likes of Big Sean, Travi$ Scott, and Nas to be featured on the project. When the pre-order link went live online, fans were surprised to discover that fellow Scooter Braun-mentee Ariana Grande would be featured on a remixed version of “What Do You Mean”.
Grande, on several stops of her Honeymoon World Tour, has performed a solo version of the track, however, it will be surely interesting how these two pop starlets compliment one another vocally. Notable producer Mike Dean, Ed Sheeran, pop singer Cody Simpson all have writing/production credits on the 19-track project. Not much more is known about the much-anticipated album, except that the next single seems to be a song entitled, “Sorry”, which will hit the airwaves very soon.
Will Purpose showcase a fully matured, musically sound Justin Bieber? If this recent crop of music is indicative of anything, we are surely in for an installment of Bieber Fever.