What makes an album absolutely awful? No, I mean something so atrocious to the point it is blatantly offensive, about topics that will upset the masses due to its morality, something so bad that it’s pure quality and what it truly represents is the reason for its downfall. If anyone can do it in this music industry, it’s Justin Bieber, arguably the world's most hated artist. I’ve tried my best over the years to defend this man’s career, that his music was genuinely harmless and wasn’t as horrible as people said it was. Even recently with his 2021 release “Justice”, I defended him to the best of my ability, but it’s now gone all wrong only 2 weeks later after his LP with his EP “Freedom.”. This EP is an example of something insulting and disrespectful, blanketed with it being fake “religious” to pass as “acceptable” when it truly isn’t.
Justin Bieber. What the fuck are you doing? You were taking steps into the right direction with your last album, and it only took you what? 2 weeks? To get back into the cycle of curating horrible music, if not the worst you’ve ever done? Is this your cry for help that you don’t want to or enjoy making music anymore? This is the point where I can’t defend you anymore, cause you clearly don’t care for your music anymore. This is a shameless cash grab, which in fact you don’t need cause you flexed in the middle of the album then proceed to talk about how hard your life is. In my “Justice” review, I had a few steps lined out to create better music but it seems like you’ve contradicted all of them. All 4 steps. All 4 of them, in only 2 weeks time, let’s go to those steps shall we?
“Step 1. Take 1.5-2 years to drop an album. Really spend time on the album because a lot of the songs off here seem rushed and makes the album bloated.”
Oh, the irony in this statement. Obviously I knew going into that 4 step process he wouldn’t listen to it of course, I know he wouldn’t have seen my post but I felt like he had the decency to wait a little bit longer just off common sense, but 2 weeks? Really? This is truly worse than your desperate attempts of re-releasing songs off “Changes” as “EP’s” last year. You even just released a Deluxe edition to “Justice” just a week ago, what is wrong with you? One thing about “Freedom.” is that it is indeed a bloated and rushed album. Uninspired, unadulterated piece of work. These songs all feel like they were made in the time you released “Justice” to when you released this EP, and knowing the laziness of Justin Bieber, it’s probably true.
“Step 2. Spend more time on your lyrics. Add depth, story, emotion, meaning, just SOMETHING to make it more interesting and have a listener WANT to look at the lyrics!”
The lyricism in this project is definitely one of the reasons why I’ve learned to dislike it so much. Now I’m not going to talk about the specific lyrics on the album because I feel like others will talk about it and maybe even talk about it even better than I ever could, but there’s definitely something to note, that it’s absolutely horrible. Justin’s songwriting ability has never been good at all, and this is one of the reasons why I wanted him to spend more time on a new release. I didn’t know how you could go down from “Changes” but congratufuckinglations you did it Justin! The clear subject-matter is religious, a gospel-inspired EP, but it falls flat on its face due to how hollow everything is and comes off as disrespectful. I won’t specifically outline the morality of the lyricism but I’ll just say this, everything other than that is as barebones as possible, and I’m 100% sure one of the featured artists said “Who are you to try to tell me what I can't do? We need a poop, huh?”, so take what you will with that. Can we talk about how he added a verse from the perspective of God? Like what? Where in your mind where you would think that’s just acceptable?
“Step 3. Your vocals are great, you have good technical abilities but you need to find some versatility because you end up sounding the same in every track. This one is relatively easy as you’ve done it on certain occasions and done it well.”
The vocal performances on this album are the same thing as always as expected, but somehow worse on specific tracks. I mean what else am I supposed to say, I’m already disappointed enough? I had like 15% of hope left for this artist and that’s all diminished at this point. Why should I put any more passion in this review than he put into his EP? If I can give this EP one thing, it's that the vocals are the least of it’s problems, so I don’t have to dog on it too much, just know it’s the same thing as usual.
“Step 4. Pave your own path. No matter how much you follow the first 3 steps, your music will always sound derivative to other albums in the same genre.”
Well, this is not nearly what I mean by “paving your own path”. Sonically, it’s derivative as ever. This is the farthest mediocre can get really, and is painful to listen to. He was definitely able to achieve something that I found really hard to do, is to “attempt” at being religious and sounding respectful but coming out with the opposite, which isn’t a compliment by any means. God damn Justin, how could you fail all of the simplest steps possible in just 2 weeks?
Listening to this EP actually saddens me. Admittedly, I was a fan of his music at some point long ago, but at this point he’s just falling under and it’s hard to defend this anymore. Once again, this EP is an example of something insulting and disrespectful, blanketed with it being fake “religious” to pass as “acceptable” when it truly isn’t. Don’t listen to this EP, you’ll come out feeling empty or feeling horrible. There’s nothing to this EP, and it fails to do what it strived for. It’s a blatantly offensive messy record with absolutely zero redeeming qualities. A downfall of a career that began as of the start of 2020, and when you thought it couldn’t get worse, it does.
With all of the “worst albums of all time” this truly stands out to me in many ways. There’s releases that can go under the “so bad it’s funny/good” category or the “off-putting, disturbing” category but this really stands in it’s own lane that I seemingly can not describe well enough. What defines this record? In a negative way, what defines it? Usually there’s this specific thing in a bad album that really pinpoints what is so bad about the record, and at least having 1 or 2 redeeming qualities. It’s Justin. That defines it. His ability to have put at least some sort of time and effort and thoughts into the process honestly ceases to amaze me how in his idiotic brain he thought this was a great idea and well enough for release. How much is money worth if you lose your dignity? When is it time to just stop and accept the millions you’ve already made?
At this point, Justin will never stop making music, and that’s just a fact. His fanbase is too large to cater for to the point that if he did leave the face of the Earth he would face repercussions. His fans will see this EP and be blindsided by what it actually is and will defend it to death, which saddens me a lot. I used to feel a lot of sympathy for him. Being an industry plant, put into the spotlight of millions at such a young age and to be hated relentlessly and not being able to truly grow up. He’s been in the limelight since he was only what, 15 years old? Constantly hated everyday for his looks, personality, etc. The saddest part being that he was just a kid, a defenseless one, who didn’t get to experience their full childhood. But at this point in his life, he’s clearly moved on and changed, and that fact will no longer be excusable for his wrongdoings in the future or even now. As much as I did feel bad for him, it’s really hard to defend a person who releases an EP like this. I will no longer try to defend him anymore because it just doesn’t make sense to and all of the hate he is getting nowadays is quite reasonable.
To end this off, I clearly despise this record, to put it lightly of course, and to put it in more harsher words, it’s one of the worst things I’ve ever heard. It tries so hard to be something but ends up in the worst state possible. I don’t hate people often, and honestly I can’t say I hate Justin but I am extremely disappointed to say the least. At this point, I will never see any glimmer of hope in his career and I hope something good comes out of this situation. Did I over exaggerate? Maybe I did. Maybe I am completely wrong about this, but all I know is that I’m upset.
Alright, done with the rant. I hope everyone had a good Easter Sunday, stay safe and goodnight AOTY!