Justin Bieber, “Boyfriend”
To ignore the fact that this single has just launched would meaning burying yourself under a pile of rocks in the deepest part of the Mariana Trench. Basically, you’re going to hear it sometime soon, and that’s probably not a good thing for most of us.
Boyfriend is the usual Bieber affair, an RnB/pop mash up with criminal over-production and auto-tune. Oh, and it’s also got Justin Timberlake.
The thing with Bieber is that it really isn’t about the music anymore, which let’s face it, is not that great (I know that may come as a shock). Justin Bieber isn’t an artist, he’s a phenomenon, the perfect combination of marketing and teenage obsession. His songs are catchy, boppy and contain absolutely no musical talent whatsoever. At least he’s gotten rid of that ridiculous hair.
Boyfriendstarts like thousands of other pop RnB songs before it, a digitalised drum track, a synthesised eagle sound swooping in and out. Timberlake’s vocals enter, half singing/rapping in his breathy low register, his usual “I’m so sexy and slightly asleep” thing.
A second drum beat comes in, picking up the pace a little bit, but things only really get going when the acoustic guitar enters (sounding so fake it could almost be a synth), and Bieber himself enters the arena. His vocals are…you know. Perfectly in tune in the upper octaves, a bit strained in a “I’ve got so many feelings” kind of way, the ultimate pop boy sound.
The chorus is utterly predictable, a good hook, some electronic back-beats, digital sounding harmonies. The added bonus is JT scatting about in the background, dropping a ‘sweet line’ in every now and then. This song really does sound like a JT standard revamped a little. The lyrics, on the other hang, are hilarious:
“Chillin by the fire why we eatin’ fondue”
“I could be your Buzz Lightyear fly across the globe”
C’mon people!! This is pure genius! Leonard Cohen couldn’t have put it better himself.
This production is super slick (thanks JT), and in terms of the genre, is pretty much formulaic. If you’re one of the millions of fans, you will love it (mind you, Bieber could put out an album of hand clapping and they’ll still love him). If you’re not a fan, then perhaps cover your ears for the next six months.