Review: Major Lazer feat. Justin Bieber & MØ – ‘Cold Water’

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Spicing up the July music schedule, Major Lazer's collaboration with Justin Bieber and MØ is the strongest new song on the chart scene in some time.

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Not only is ‘Cold Water’ a fantastic song, it is fantastically timed. If Drake has just one more week at number 1 with ‘One Dance,’ not only will I consider throwing myself from a high cliff, it will overtake Bryan Adams’ ‘(Everything I Do) I Do It For You’ as the longest running chart-topper in UK’s history. 14 weeks is too long, people. Major Lazer must agree, with the electronic band dropping a belter of a song to usurp him, featuring the biggest turnaround in music history, Mr. Justin Bieber.

“LOL,” says everyone when Bieber comes up in conversation, “Remember when we used to hate Justin Bieber?” In just one year, the Canadian bad-boy singer who found fame with ‘Baby’ back in 2010 has turned his career around, releasing four consecutive hits – Skrillex and Diplo’s ‘Where Are Ü Now,’ and ‘What Do You Mean,’ ‘Sorry,’ and ‘Love Yourself’ from his own Purpose. His feature on ‘Cold Water’ is equally, if not more, stunning.

One third of Major Lazer is, of course, Diplo, who sparked the regeneration on the Jack Ü LP early last summer. He certainly knows the best way to use Justin’s vocals, as long gone are the childish high pitchness of the ‘Baby’ era in favour of a rougher voice that matches in grittiness his new image. It matches the song Major Lazer has created perfectly, which branches into a sort of Latin-cum-Caribbean sound with reggaeton drum waves and smooth African guitar. Danish rising talent MØ’s vocals are also well chosen to match both Bieber’s devotive part and the song’s overall sound, making her feature on the bridge one of the highlights of the single.

It’s great to see the music scene moving away from blander pop into songs inspired by the music of the world. Written, amongst others, by an American (Diplo) and an Englishman (Ed Sheeran, of course), performed by a Canadian (Bieber) and a Dane (MØ), and delivered with numerous global influences flaring up throughout, ‘Cold Water’ is one of the best offerings of the year. Bravo, Major Lazer, and keep rising, Justin.

‘Cold Water’ is out now via Mad Decent and Because Music

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Editor of The Edge. Previously Culture Editor (2016-17). Sporadic writer for the Wessex Scene, DJ on Surge, known photobomber of SUSUtv's videos. Bad habits include Netflix, not doing my work and drinking too much tea.

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