It’s hard to believe almost two years have passed since Justin Bieber entered the hearts and headphones of teenie-boppers everywhere. The now-17-year-old pop sensation released his sophomore effort two days ago and — praised be the ghost of Christmas past — it’s a Christmas album called Under the Mistletoe.

Justin Bieber

“Mistletoe”
Island


The lead single, “Mistletoe,” was released on Oct. 17 and tried to infuse autumn with Christmas cheer more than two months before the holiday. The track molds Bieber’s factory-produced Christmas spirit into a swagger-licious track, complete with smarmy snaps, liberal use of “shawty” and trite lyrics that can only be associated with the most wonderful (read: most gag-inducing) time of the year: “The wise men followed the star / The way I follow my heart / And it led me to a miracle.”

It’s not the worst Christmas-inspired track out there, but “Mistletoe” can’t distinguish itself from the barrage of candy cane-coated songs that will start popping up on radio waves in the next few weeks. This single is like that Christmas gift from your estranged aunt: Sure, the sweater is nice and maybe you’ll wear it a few times, but in the end, you would have preferred an iPhone.

“Mistletoe” is uninspired, especially in contrast to the innocent, upbeat numbers that launched Bieber to stardom. The naiveté and idealistic love portrayed in My World 2.0’s “Baby” is a thing of the past. Bieber is on the cusp of manhood now and simple love won’t do. He wants booty, and he’s going to get it — under the mistletoe.

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