Five years after dropping his most acclaimed album Purpose, Justin Bieber (Def Jam/Island Records) is back with Changes, an album full of colours and emotions that unveils throughout its 17 tracks. Ready to get back under the spotlight, Justin Bieber started his 2020 Changes campaign by releasing his viral track Yummy, shortly followed by the soothing R&B song Get Me (ft.Kehlani) and Intentions featuring Migos’ Quavo.
Three days before the album’s international release, the Canadian R&B singer came down to London Town for an exclusive and intimate gig at the Indigo by the O2 where he performed a few songs for a few lucky fans, including some of his older tracks such as All That Matters & Love Yourself, and answered a few questions from his –very excited– fans.
But it’s on Valentine’s Day that Justin took his long-awaited sixth studio album to streaming platforms. The project benefits from multiple features with long-time friends & collaborators Post Malone (Forever) and Travis Scott (Second Emotion) and it could be seen as a testimonial of his love to wife, Hailey Baldwin-Bieber. However, if we take a deeper look, it becomes clear that the record aims to shed a light onto another side of Justin’s personal life, his relationship with God — a theme that Justin has been openly talking about on social media and that could be read between the lines of his track That’s What Love Feels Like (And I can feel you / Even though I haven’t touched you / Yeah, that’s what love is).
Although a pop-infused R&B vibe heavily emanates from the album, it is difficult to compare it to its R&B predecessor & fan favourite Journals, released in 2014. If Journals got its massive success, it was mainly down to the sudden change of direction of Bieber’s sound. Journals was risky, challenging & reckless. But with Changes,Bieber seems to have settled down & is decided to show that he’s ready for what’s next, without any fear or any doubt. It’s often common for artists who grew up under the spotlight to come back years later with a way more mature record and it feels like Changes is no exception to the rule. Co-produced and co-written with Bieber’s day one collaborator, Poo Bear, the album contains some hidden gems, such as the song All Around Me & the title-track Changes: two little jewels hidden in a box, waiting to be discovered. And when we think the album might get too deep, Bieber hits us with a fun track like Forever or Yummy, reminding us of his pop roots that propelled him into stardom back in 2009.