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Believe is Justin Bieber's third studio album which was released by June 15, 2012 by Island Records.

Album Background[]

On March 2, 2012, Justin Bieber appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to announce that the first single from his upcoming album would be called "Boyfriend"; it was released on March 26, 2012.

Bieber also invited his fans to participate in one of the creative decisions for the "Boyfriend" single. Two potential cover arts were published on his website, and fans were encouraged to vote for which one they preferred. The cover with the most votes became the official cover for the single.

Tracklisting[]

  1. All Around The World (featuring Ludacris) 4:04
  2. Boyfriend 2:51
  3. As Long As You Love Me (featuring Big Sean) 3:49
  4. Catching Feelings 3:54
  5. Take You 3:40
  6. Right Here (featuring Drake) 3:24
  7. Fall 4:08
  8. Die In Your Arms 3:57
  9. Thought Of You 3:50
  10. Beauty And A Beat (featuring Nicki Minaj) 3:47
  11. One Love 3:54
  12. Be Alright 3:09
  13. Believe 3:42

Deluxe edition tracks

  1. Out of Town Girl 3:33
  2. She Don't Like the Lights 3:59
  3. Maria 4:08

Chart Performance[]

"Believe" debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 374,000, making it Bieber's fourth number-one album. It dropped two spots in its second week to number three with sales of 115,000 copies.

The album was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on July 31, 2012. As of December 2015, it has sold 1,610,000 copies in the US. It sold 57,000 copies in its first week in Canada, debuting atop the Canadian Albums Chart. In the following week, the album fell to number two selling 18,000 copies, behind Linkin Park's "Living Things" album.

It also debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart with sales of 38,115 copies, making Bieber the second youngest male solo artist ever to reach number one.

In Japan, the album entered the Oricon Weekly Albums Chart at number seven, selling 13,886 copies. As of July 26, 2012, "Believe" has sold over 98,000 copies in Canada.

In Brazil, the album was certified platinum by Associação Brasileira dos Produtores de Discos (ABPD) within three days of release. The album debuted at number-one in Mexico and was later certified Platinum by Asociación Mexicana de Productores de Fonogramas y Videogramas ending the year as the 14th best selling of 2012.

In November 2013, Universal Music México awarded Bieber with a triple platinum certification for sales of over 180,000 copies as well as over 300,000 digital tracks.

Critical Reception[]

"Believe" has received generally favorable reviews from music critics. At Metacritic, the album received an average score of 68, based on 14 reviews, which indicates "generally favorable reviews".

While BBC Music noted Bieber's ongoing "tween appeal," it also examined his gradual stylist evolution from his previous album. The New York Times noted the search for maturity Bieber exhibited. It complimented the natural strength of his voice, which did not need as much technical enhancement as it did previously.

However, Slant Magazine criticized the production's need to "slice, dice, and Auto-Tune [Bieber's] notes into shape."

Entertainment Weekly praised the pop star's evolution, calling the album both a "reinvention and a reintroduction." Rolling Stone noted the deeper voice and more intense beats found on the album, although it lampooned one of his euphemisms for newfound sexual maturity.

The New York Times noted the difficulty Bieber faced in creating the album—a tension between his love of R&B and the profitability of pop music—while suggesting that his "savvy compromises" made the conflict manageable."

Entertainment Weekly praised the variety of audiences for the album, calling it "the rare album that tries to be everything to everyone and largely succeeds."

Reviews of the vocals on specific songs were mixed. The New York Times review complained of certain songs where Bieber "sounded bored" and unlike himself, although other tracks were said to show him when he "leans on his instincts."

The review credited Bieber for his "limber and wounded" vocals. It suggested that Bieber's voice would continue to evolve, and that in a few years it could fully express "angst". It said Bieber was "more credible when begging or retreating" while BBC Music stated similarly that "his confidence, for the most part, [is] played down."

A large number of reviews compared Bieber to Justin Timberlake, a once-teenage pop star who achieved great success during his evolution from teenage boy band member to young adult. Most found the situations very different, saying Bieber was better suited to pursuing his own style rather than follow in the footsteps of Timberlake. The New York Times, however, complimented his references to Michael Jackson as aspirational.

Meanwhile, reviewers tended to dislike Bieber's work with other pop stars. BBC Music said that, despite an abundance of guest contributors, Bieber is "overshadowed."

Assessments of the long-term impact of the album generally avoided calling Believe a revolutionary step forward. The Independent roundly criticized the artist's lack of innovation, calling it a "pitifully timid affair".

The New York Times noted that while Bieber was not ushering in radical changes to pop music, he was at least playing to his personal strengths. Billboard noted the singer's potential with future releases, pointing out "multiple songs that hint at what Bieber could become someday."

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