Pop Music

Justin Bieber's new track, "Boyfriend," defies those snap judgments you just made

The verses to Justin Bieber's "Boyfriend" play through speakers undeniably, quintessentially and unexpectedly like Tyga's "Rack City." What the hell? When did the sugary pop we were to expect from this boy-band-of-one fizz out? It must have been when his voice started changing just before he released his Christmas album.

While the more mature Bieber's step towards the "Rack City" vibe may come as a shock to some fans, he is a boy growing up, and "Boyfriend" is logically the first step in that direction. Lyrically, it's par for the mini-golf course: "If I was your boyfriend, I'd never let you go/Keep you on my arm, girl, you'll never be alone/And I can be a gentleman, anything you want."

But, unlike Biebs's other offerings, it's, dare we say, listenable, head-bobbleable even. We know -- we're as surprised as you are. Listen to the track enough times, though, and you'll forget that this is the same guy singing who has gone from "Baby" to "Boyfriend" in two short years.

Bieber's vocal delivery dips in parts -- yes, it's deeper now -- but he still manages to throw in a few falsetto notes near the end of this three-minute love note. It's not the singing, or the rapping Biebs treats us to on the first and second verse, that makes "Boyfriend" run with a swagger that inches near Tyga territory, it's the production.

Let us give credit where credit is due: To the producers of this song -- a guy named Mason D. Levy and another, more famous, guy, Mike Posner (of "Cooler Than Me" fame). It is the production on "Boyfriend" that does all of the heavy-lifting, since the lyrics don't, and the acoustic guitar strums truly add a pop flare to a song that would make even Selena Gomez swoon.

"Boyfriend" is the first single from Bieber's third studio album, Believe, which will be released this summer. If you can't wait that long to cure your rekindled Bieber fever, he also sings the chorus on Far East Movement's new single, "Live My Life" -- which, unfortunately, sounds like anything ever released by LMFAO mixed with "On The Floor" by Jennifer Lopez; the only thing missing is the guest spot by Pitbull.

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Cory Lamz
Contact: Cory Lamz

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