It’s been 4 years since the heart-throbbing sensation known as Justin Bieber released a new project. Since 2015’s Purpose album, Bieber has been relatively mute musically. With a string of features here-and-there, Justin basically disappeared from the music scene. From undergoing public frenzy throughout the media, pubic breakups, show cancellations, struggles with both anxiety & drugs, to marrying the love of his life (Hailey Baldwin, now Bieber), to his shocking Lyme Disease diagnosis, Bieber’s life has been… quite a whirlwind of events.
Now, with renewed strength and a clearer & sober mind, Justin is back! Wiser and smoother than ever, Bieber reverts to his R&B sound with his fifth studio album, Changes! Released on Valentine’s Day, Changes features a pretty decent line up of industry vets such as: Post Malone, Kehlani, Quavo, Travis Scott and more. The project celebrates all that Bieber has become. Now at 25 years of age, married, and happier than ever, Bieber revels in this new love, stability, and peace.
JB sets the tone for the project with “All Around Me” as he bellows about craving his wife’s presence. He acknowledges how she has changed his life in ways he never imagined. He celebrates her internal and external beauty as well as the unconditional love the two posses. Cuts such as the soothing lullaby “Habitual” and sensual “Come Around Me” continue this theme of celebration as Bieber proudly proclaims how much he loves his sweetheart. He is grateful for the love that they have developed and he literally can’t get enough of it. He find peace in her love, her sex, and the very essence of her.
The first personal favorite arrives with the Quavo-assisted “Intentions.” Justin shouts Hailey’s parents out for creating the love of his life. He counts out everything that makes her perfect for him. Almost like puppy love, Bieber gushes over her nonstop praising essentially everything about her. While Quavo’s part is ultimately unnecessary, the bubbly, upbeat production helps to keep listeners on track with the record.
“Yummy” channels more of the sensual side of Bieber as he bellows about the ways his wife satisfies him sexually. Contagious and smooth, Bieber is not only elated that his wife is his. Pop Bieber returns slightly on “Forever.” Featuring both Post Malone & Clever, “Forever” finds Justin asking his wife, “Could you be here with me Forever?” She has changed him and he simply wants to spend the rest of his life with her.
As Changes continues, Justin continues this love letter to his wife! On “Take It Out On Me,” he tells Hailey to take all of her anger and frustrations out on him (if you catch my drift), He wants to please her in each and every way. He wants her to do any and everything she wants to him. “Get Me” (a fave from the album) finds both Bieber and Kehlani angelically harmonizing together about their honeys. The two bellow about the ways their lovers completely understand them and their flaws. They have found partners who simply see them for them. They connect so effortlessly as if their souls were made for each other.
As if you are floating on a cloud, the dreamy production makes this song so lovely. Kehlani does no wrong as she and Bieber create such a beautiful melody.
On “E.T.A.,” Justin craves his wife to the point he questions when she will be back home to him. Channeling Journals‘ “All That Matters,” the production is sultry and suave. He just wants to make never-ending love to his wife. He longs for her embrace.
As Changes reaches its end, Bieber uses songs such as “Changes,” “Confirmation,” and “That’s What Love Is” to reflect on his mental, emotional, and spiritual growth. In “Changes,” he focuses on the changes that are helping him to be the best man for his wife. He takes time to cherish and appreciate the space that he and his wife have created (“Confirmation”). On “That’s What Love Is,” JB defines how he measures the love between he and his wife. To him, it is much more than the physical act, it’s rooted within the soul.
Changes ends with the remix to the album’s lead single, “Yummy,” featuring the larger-than-life vocals of the sensual ATL songstress, Summer Walker. Summer brings that authentic R&B appeal as she and Justin mesh together creating sweet honey on the official remix.
Overall there are a few things about “Changes.” It acts a complete sweet serenade to Bieber’s wife. He spends majority of the album ranting over her body, her beauty, making love to her, and being with her. Changes takes the pain heard in the sensational Journals project and showcases a more reformed being. However, the album does have it’s flaws.
Much of the album lacks variety in terms of production. Many of the tracks tend to sound alike and can somewhat take away from the beautiful imagery Justin creates. Unlike Journals which was a true R&B moment in history and one of the best (if not, the best) Bieber projects ever, Changes somewhat lacks that sexiness and stimulation that we felt from Justin years ago. It comes off a bit uninspiring in some moments.
Overall, while the Changes is not Bieber’s worst work, it is not his best. However, there are several cuts from this project that will definitely make playlists and rotations throughout the world. Don’t get it twisted though, Changes does not take away from Bieber’s discography or legacy. It is a pretty good album that paints a sweet picture of being young and happy in love. It is great to see Justin back on his feet and having a fun with music again.
Several of the songs possess a quality much like wine: they tend to get better over time as you play them over and over. With his first album in nearly 5 years, Changes reminds both long-time and new fans, that JB can bring still bring that soulful R&B flavor (when he wants to). I would give it a 6/10.
Favorite Tracks from “Changes”:
- Get Me
- Take It Out Me
- Come Around Me