0.2 - THË ŠHÅDØW RĘÅŁM (THIS EP CURSED. DO NOT LISTEN)
Welp, I guess we have the White Savior trope in music form now.
WARNING: This is a long ass rant. It’s dumb. It contains religious shit and cultural appropriation too, so yeah. I also think that Christian art and rap is completely wrong, but if done wrong it can lead to this shit. So, welcome to the show.
I haven’t listened to much “bad” music. I try to do this on purpose. But I have my fair share of shit albums and projects, such as Mark of the Beast, Emoji Raps, We Beefin, Doug Walker’s The Wall, The Big Day, etc. However, up until now, I have never listened to a project as shameless and appalling as Freedom. This EP is the most preachy bullshit I have ever heard.There is so much I want to get into here, and I will try to add as much as possible, but this is just, scary. I have never heard so much bullcrap fly out of someone's mouth in just 22 minutes. I will try to go point by point on how fucked up this EP is, and I hope I am doing a favor by never having your ears listen to this ass.
So here is where it starts. MLK Interlude. I remember listening to this, and laughing. I thought it was pretty crazy that Bieber thought this was ok, and I have to admit that the jokes were absolutely hilarious, with everyone meme-ing how crazy of a decision this was, but I did not know that this single track would foreshadow what came next. And now you all know…… what came next.
Freedom, according to the Oxford Dictionary, is “the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint.” And man, Justin uses it all over this thing with his status, and in all of the wrong ways. He creates extremely petty statements at the world, along with sprinkles of horrible rapping and maybe even cultural appropriation, as well as yes, inappropriate uses of Jesus and themes of Christianity. As some of you know, I am not the most religious person in the world, and am in fact Jewish, so I might not know everything about the religion, but I will say that what he does relating to Christianity are extremely selfish, and I will get to that later. Basically, this is a track by track review of the new Justin EP, so none of you ever have to listen to this crap in your life.
Starting with the title track, Freedom, my jaw dropped in how appalled I was. The track starts with Justin rapping with I kid you not, a full on African accent, the first lines being “big up to my brother, blessed sons and daughters, we all lookin’ for answers, we in search of water.” It was hard to not turn off the EP, but I kept going. The track is filled with mentions of Messiah, Christianity, and has an African beat etc. The hook is “Freedom, don’t it feel good (x4)” and at this point I am in dread. I know I am white, and I don’t think I can take the perspective of a minority without wincing to the point of death, and looking at someone do it is just horrifying. It’s like the song I won’t name by JPEGMAFIA on BBC. One of the worst tracks on the EP. Let’s move on. On the next track, Justin continues to rap about the struggles of the world, over a sort of boom bap beat, and it’s just so painfully mediocre and cringe. He continues his preachy bs, talking about how “we need a savior,” basically saying to his audience about how God is the only way this will get fixed, etc. It isn’t the worst song in the world, it’s just extremely boring and uninspired with a shitty hook, as well as it having extremely odd and horrible intentions behind it.
Then there is We’re In This Together, and man it gets worse. I legitimately think that this is the worst track on the album, maybe that I have listened to. Firstly, the production is absolutely awful, as Justin raps over a shitty Drake type beat, but where it truly gets fucked up is it’s lyrics. As a note, I forgot to mention this earlier but every track has a feature, which makes them barely more tolerable as the spotlight gets taken away from Beiber, but this track has none. First verse comes in, and he talks about his struggles being rich. This is a bad start. He talks about how “he was 17 and had a milli’” and the girl problems surrounding it, as well as the 2nd worst line on this EP, “On the surface, I felt like the man ; but deep inside I felt deprivеd just like an empty can.” You have to be kidding me. This is some elementary school shit. Then there is this shit hook on the world’s struggles, which is highly insensitive considering the subject. Then there is a verse about him “devoting himself to god” and I just don’t have the energy to keep describing it. Just a shit track. One of the worst pop rap songs I have ever heard, maybe even in history. Next there is Where You Go I Follow, and it’s probably the most religious song on the album, which is saying a lot. It talks about how he (god) is with him every step of the way, God rising up, yada yada yada. It just goes on and on until something that is hard to describe. This being that the most notable thing though is at the end, is that there is a skit in the perspective of JESUS, yes…..JESUS, portrayed by Judah Smith, talking about…..jesus? It’s really confusing. I do know it is from Jesus’ perspective, due to it being confirmed in the last track, and it really is just dumb fake woke being thrown up at you. Metaphorical bullshit that makes 0 sense.
Track 5 is up, and I am thrilled that we are more than half-way through this shitshow. I will have to say that this is probably the “best” track on the album, even with the bar being so low. Don’t get me wrong it’s still bad, with preachiness all over, repeating the same themes from every track, but at least there is a hook by the talented Tori Kelly. However, it still ends with a really cheesy sermon from Judah once again, so it still gets bumped down. But overall, it’s the most bearable track so far. Good job, I guess. And finally, we are at the last track on Freedom, being Afraid To Say and what a sour ending this is. This is a track about…..
Let me just read you the chorus.
“Do we got the room to make mistakes?
Are we judged for everything we said? (Ooh, ooh, ooh)
I wanna grow but I'm afraid (Ooh, ooh, ooh)
And will it always be the same? (Ooh, ooh, ooh)
Does what I gotta say even matter? (Ooh, ooh, ooh)
Is life about climbing up the ladder
And can we even see lives that are shattered?
'Cause I'm really tryna silence the chatter
What have we done with society?
When everybody's getting canceled
And can't there be room for maturity?
'Cause writing 'em off is not the answer.”
This is by far the worst set of lines on Freedom. I can agree with Justin that cancel culture can easily sway someone’s opinions about a person, without a lack of evidence, and that can be an absolute mess. For example, the JPEGMAFIA situation, where someone faked being sexually harassed by the man, and quite a large number of people believing it, even if it was false. But, I feel like this invalidates the actually good things cancel culture has done, getting awful people in power being held accountable, leading to a more positive future. Although cancel culture is a double-edged sword, it's more important, at least to me, that people are held accountable. People who get cancelled deservedly, such as R. Kelly, don’t change. They don’t learn from their actions unless they get serious consequences. There are horrible people out there, and Justin fails to realize how sometimes, people are shitty, and won’t change for the better. It’s not society’s fault that they did their actions, it’s the assholes that do them out of enjoyment. It just leaves a horrible taste in my mouth.
Moving on with the song, it ends with more God speak, as well as another spoken word ending in the perspective of Jesus, and that is Freedom. By far the worst project of 2021, and maybe even the decade. It’s filled with horrible production, backed with the most mediocre features, with extremely corny and fake woke sermons. But most of all, to me, this is the downfall of Justin. I don’t think there is a way for him to ever come back from this. From the cultural appropriation, to the fake woke Apple notes app art, to the horrendous religious theming, complaining about being rich, and white savior ideas riddled throughout, not letting minorities do the talking, this is the worst example of a fall I have ever heard. As soon as we thought he was getting slightly better with Justice, now with the lawsuit, as well as this horrendous mess, this is in fact to me, the end of Justin Bieber. I have absolutely no respect for this man.
Best tracks: n/a
Least fav: ALL ESPECIALLY: Freedom, We’re In This Together, Afraid To Say