This is really happening, isn’t it? Justin Bieber is making a legit comeback–or for those of us who slagged him off from the start, a comeforward.
It started with the Comedy Central Roast earlier this year, in which Bieber was either a good sport or transparently allowing himself to be excoriated as part of the reinvention process, depending on whom you ask. Then came Diplo and Skrillex’s monster hit, “Where Are Ü Now,” which Bieber lent his vocals too earlier this summer. (One never need ask the song itself where it is now: it’s been playing in stores, cars, and clubs near constantly.) If Bieber’s latest song sounds familiar, though, it should. It’s a blatant, fraternal-twin-if-not-clone of “Where Are Ü Now” that continues his path toward EDM-friendly pop stardom. Damn him, it’s working.
The reason why the song has a similar pace and some similar effects from this summer’s hit, which was recently profiled in the Times, is because he once again worked with Skrillex on it. The similarly titled “What Do You Mean?” is another light, refreshing dance-pop concoction, with Bieber’s feathery vocals woven throughout. It’s the kind of song that’s going to have the many, many Bieber-agnostics nodding their heads despite themselves.
Watch the lyric video for “What Do You Mean?” below.