Justin Bieber's 'Journal' review: Haphazard collection

Singer Justin Bieber performs at The Staples Center

Singer Justin Bieber performs at The Staples Center on in Los Angeles. (June 24, 2013) (Credit: Getty Images)

Justin Bieber is developing a habit of pushing things just a little too far.

Whether it's his confrontations with the paparazzi or his dissing of presidents, Bieber has been going one step (or more) beyond what would normally be acceptable positions. His new album "Journals" (Island Def Jam) is just the latest example of the problem.

Bieber has decided to collect all the songs he's released in the past 10 weeks on his "Music Mondays" and throw in a few more songs and the trailer to his upcoming movie and call it a new album. The "Music Mondays" was a cool thing, getting new music to his fans quickly. But a lot of these songs don't sound formally finished, and he travels a lot of the same ground in several of them -- broken relationships set to Justin Timberlake soul. Is there much difference between "All Bad" and "Bad Day"? No.

But there is a huge difference between "Bad Day" and his new single, "Confident," which shows Biebs moving into hip-hop with a catchy, memorable groove and first-rate help from Chance the Rapper. It's a sign that Bieber will move through his current struggles into even greater success. The throwback groove of "Rollercoaster" backs that up, as does his tender pop "Heartbreaker."

So why further confuse Bieber's status with songs that probably wouldn't make the cut on a regular album? Someone needs to explain to him that he can take a break and have his career survive. In fact, a break probably would help his career.


JUSTIN BIEBER

"Journals"

GRADE B-

BOTTOM LINE An uneven, cobbled-together collection

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