With a SNL double-bill on the horizon and plenty of hazy rumors in his rear-view, Justin Bieber has been at the center of many questions in recent months and even promised to give us some answers with his latest album. Moving away from the closed-off “swaggy adult” that was depicted in last year’s GQ profile, Bieber’s intimate one-on-one conversation for the cover of Billboard is the first and only interview he’s done for Believe Acoustic (out Jan. 29) and seems to have produced the best results yet. Something he reiterates–and something that gets forgotten all too frequently–is the fact that he’s 18 years old, and will hurt and react just like anyone else at that age. “I’m not in the happiest place that I’ve ever been. I’m trying to get through what I’m going through,” he says, speaking of what can only be the breakup of The Greatest Couple of Our Time (or of the last two years). “I have my really close friends to cheer me up and keep me going,” he adds, confirming our suspicions that a recent “Cry Me a River” cover and sluggish live show all circle back to one person. But before we can coronate Bieber as the most mature pop star on the planet, leave some room in your brain space to picture him slapping the butt of his interview partner.
After tricking us with a Twitter stunt last week, Justin Timberlake dropped his latest musical offering just before midnight on Monday, catching the lingering Golden Globes crowd on Twitter just in time to launch an onslaught of mixed reactions about his decision to make music his priority once again. Like Destiny’s Child‘s latest song “Nuclear”, Timberlake’s new song “Suit and Tie” didn’t instantly grab us and transport us to a world of magical Timbaland beats and inventive blends of pop, R&B and soul, but it is a welcomed return filled with slick grooves and familiar musings on style, sex and having a good time.
So much for waiting for the Super Bowl. The first new Destiny’s Child single since 2005 has arrived, ready to remind the world of why they might be considered one of the greatest female groups of all-time or that Beyoncé gets far too many of the solos. “Nuclear” sneakily premiered on Mashable on Friday afternoon, making us cancel any after-work plans in exchange for launching full DC3 retrospective. (Hot Friday night, yes?) You can check out the song in full, below, but first, we’ve jotted down our initial reactions to this monumental offering.
0:01 “I love you,” Beyonce coos. No, Bey. We love YOU. And now we’re blushing. You don’t know how long we’ve been waiting for you to say that to us!
0:18 Bring the beat in. Pharrell (who produced and co-wrote, along with Michelle, James Fauntleroy and Lonny Bereal) seems to be channeling some early ’90s R&B here.
0:30 “They want to know how we keep our sh-t together.” BRB amending our “Beyonce has a potty mouth” assessment now. Destiny’s children no more!
0:43 Bey is mostly interested in “when the two become one, on a quantum level.” Who say physics isn’t sexy? We’re somewhat unconvinced by this interesting use of wordplay, but we commend Michelle for brushing up on science (don’t forget the magnets next time!) during DC3′s hiatus.
0:52 “It’s nuuuu-cleee-arrr/With youuuuuu hereee.” Three syllable words can be tricky, and is this really the most romantic or sexy of adjectives to include in a song about love? We just think of explosions (sorry!).
1:22 (Maybe it helps if you add some grunts?)
1:41 Kelly! We live for moments like this.
1:58 So, this beat is crazy good.
2:25 We are now toe-tapping and shimmying, should you need suggestions for appropriate choreography.
2:50 Finally, Michelle’s last-minute solo contribution has arrived!
3:18 Here’s where thing start to get ominous: “There’s nowhere left to run, why run, why would you run?”
3:38 And it doesn’t stop there: “Blow it all away,” ladies? Is DC3 finished? (Is this their swan song?) Do we need to worry about certain relationships? Is Blue Ivy going to have two bedrooms?! Nah, they’re probably just trying to set the mood. When you’re in love nothing else matters–or so we hear.
New music from Destiny’s Child is always welcome, and although this isn’t the empowering sound that makes us want to blow an entire paycheck on shoes just to prove our own self-worth as independent women, it’s a silky throwback that’s slowly but surely ingrained itself into our brains. But that doesn’t mean it’s the kind of track millions of drunk and rowdy football fans will want to get down to during halftime. That’s just our opinion, any way. How about you? Is this the triumphant return of Destiny’s Child you’ve been waiting patiently for? Let us know, while we go back to rehearsing “Jumpin’ Jumpin’” choreography in our cubicle.
Listen to the World Premiere of Destiny’s Child’s “Nuclear” [Mashable]
[Photo: Getty Images]