Justin Bieber is back on the scene with his new album, “Purpose.” In just its first month, it has already made its way to the number one spot on Billboard’s Top 200 Albums.
“The Feeling,” which features up-and-coming artist Halsey, sticks out from the rest of the songs on the album in the best way possible. While most of Bieber’s new songs have an R&B feel, “The Feeling” takes a slightly different approach, sounding almost like a cross between the genres of Dance and Alternative.
The song begins with the sound of a synthesizer. It grabs the audiences and holds them captive throughout the song. Like a domino effect, a drum beat follows the noise of the synthesizer. Following the drum is a combination of more sounds, all layering each other. When it finally feels like the mix of sounds is about to explode, Bieber’s voice enters the song. Bieber’s words echo in the background as the instrumental calms.
The introduction of the song seems like a tidal wave. It grabs the listeners and pulls them in. As they sink deeper into the ocean, a feeling of calmness washes over them.
Halsey’s voice echoes the last word in every-other line of the verses, giving the song a haunting tone to it. The song brings this tone into the pre-chorus.
“I’m notorious for thinking you’re,” Bieber takes a moment to pause his words before continuing “full of beautiful/Instead of hollow.” The lyrics in this line seem to contrast who Bieber wants to believe his subject is and the reality of who she really is.
By pausing at “you’re,” it is clear Bieber is not sure which is the true version of her. “Hollow” is then echoed in the background through Bieber and Halsey’s voices that are treated with synthesizers. The synthesizers make the words appear more confused and haunted.
The song finally comes in at full-force during the chorus when both Bieber and Halsey’s voices are illuminated. Though most of the song so far has had more of an alternative-pop feel, the chorus takes on the feel of a dance song. The beat picks up significantly and the drums become more pronounced.
Another difference between the chorus and the previous two sections is that Halsey’s voice is prominent in this section. Their vocals are harmonized perfectly. Bieber seems to be singing at a lower pitch, which makes Halsey’s voice sound almost louder than his. The song does not follow the typical call-and-answer format that most other duets do. The vocals of both artists are harmonized together.
The use of harmonization and echoing gives the song even more of a haunting quality.
The lines of the chorus are mostly sung in a similar fashion, until the end.
The most memorable part of the chorus is near the end and found in the lines: “Can’t get out of my head, and I need you to save me/If I am delusional then maybe I’m crazy/In love with you, am I in love with you?/Or am I in love with the feeling?”
The notes spiral higher as they reach the end of the line, but quickly come back to the original lower note for the beginning of the next line. The change in pace and pitch during those select lines makes the chorus more interesting. It makes the listener feel like he or she is running after something before finally losing his or her breath and having to slow down.
The best part of “The Feeling,” is that it is so relatable. Everyone who has been in a relationship has gotten to the point where they ask themselves, “Am I in love with you? Or am I in love with the feeling?” This song is about the love he has had for so long that, as Bieber sings, she has become a part of him “just like anatomy.” It’s almost human nature to go back to her time and time again. He wants to believe that she is absolutely perfect and that he is living out a dream when he’s with her.
Regardless of the feeling she brings, they have had problems for so long and he begins to think, “Could it be I don’t know what’s good for me?” Maybe going back to her isn’t what he needs.
Music is supposed to be relatable. It is supposed to make us think and reflect on our own lives. “The Feeling” does an incredible job of doing that. Bieber and Halsey’s vocals shine beautifully throughout the song. They bring the song to life, making the words hit harder when heard by the audience. The instrumental is genius. It gives emotion to the song through its beat that seems to be pulling the audience in.
“The Feeling” is by far Bieber’s best song yet. This song is haunting and intoxicating. It is addictive. You’re never going to want to stop listening.