Believe- Give It a Shot

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Last week, Justin Bieber’s latest album was released and, while I was buying it as a gift for a certain birthday boy, I caved and bought one for myself as well.  I’ve never had Bieber Fever and I’m not a die-hard fan of his, but I do give credit where credit is due.  After hearing a few of his past singles and the “Boyfriend Remix,” featuring 2 Chainz, Mac Miller, and Asher Roth, I just had to give JB a chance and listen to the CD.  Now, that I’ve had some time to listen to it and digest it, I must admit that I like it.  Sure, I’m not obsessed with every song, but each track is commendable in its own way.

Overall, this album seems to serve as the necessary stepping stone that Justin has been waiting for so that he can smoothly transition into a more urban genre.  Many of the songs stay true to his romantic, PG reputation, but, with features like Big Sean, Drake, Ludacris, and Nicki Minaj, I think we all know where Justin wants to go with his music.  However, in reality, this shouldn’t come as a surprise to anybody.  I mean, his manager is Scooter Braun, who also manages Asher Roth, and his mentor is Usher, who is… well, Usher.  And, if that didn’t give you a big enough hint, how about Justin’s cover of Drake’s “Trust Issues”?  The boy was destined to break out of his teen, pop image at one point or another.

I have to be honest and actually applaud the transition.  There are several songs that have a heavy R&B influence and it suits Justin well.  I’m particularly a big fan of “As Long As You Love Me,” featuring Big Sean, and “Right Here,” featuring Drake.  Both songs are a perfect balance of where Justin is now and where he wants to go.  Plus, the rap verses flow very nicely with the whole feel of the album.  In my opinion, it was not forced at all.

I congratulate the entire JB team on being able to satisfy old fans and still bring in new, more mature ones because that is exactly what I feel they did.  His growth is obvious, but there’s still a little something for the girls that would go crazy for the 16-year-old heart-throb.  There’s no doubt in my mind that all of Justin’s supporters will be pleased with this album and the sales of it.  But, as a disclaimer, do not listen to this CD if you just went through a break-up.  Let’s just say that Selena was definitely on his mind when the album was being recorded.  The heavy romantic tone is not going to sit well with you.  Other than that you should be good!  I would say to definitely give Believe a chance.

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About Tatiana Figueroa Ramirez

Born in Puerto Rico and raised in the mainland United States, I graduated with a B.A. in English Literature from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) and am a 2016 VONA Voices Alumna. I currently perform spoken-word in the greater Washington D.C. area and have previously performed in Philadelphia, Miami, and the Dominican Republic. Most recently, I have been published in Public Pool, Spillwords, and The Acentos Review, and Here Comes Everyone: East & West Issue.

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