Justine Bieber is a Canadian singer and songwriter, and the lead vocalist for the Canadian screamo band Three Psycho Kittens. Her dark, riveting lyrics have won her universal critical acclaim. Her intense singing style, alternating between shrieks and growls, and her larger-than-life stage presence have garnered comparisons to such artists as Janis Joplin, Grace Slick, and Iggy Pop. While she continues to work with the Kittens, she is better known for her extensive solo career, and for the single Death Blood Kill (Ark Music Factory). Her debut solo album, Dead People, was a vast commercial and critical success which instantly catapulted her to international fame. She has since released one other full-length album, as well as an EP. Bieber is often credited as the first musical artist to ask "what if God was one of us?", and then answer that hypothetical with a profane diatribe.
Justine Bieber was born on December 21, 1994, somewhere in Canada. Her childhood was a fairly normal Canadian one, until the inexplicable suicide of her father. His suicide, coupled with the calamitous 2002 invasion of Ontario by a massive plague of brown rats, sent Justine into a deep depression, which most observers credit for her music's concentration on heavily-theatrical themes of violent death — and her lyrics' frequent allusions to killing rats with a shovel.
In 2005, Justine began shooting heroin with two other girls from her sixth-grade class; together, they formed the band which would eventually become Three Psycho Kittens. By 2007, Bieber's songwriting and singing skills had matured; as a result, the band began getting more and more frequent gigs in small-town dive bars across Ontario.
In 2007, Justine wrote and performed a song by herself, filming the video for it with a shattered mirror and a hand-held Sony Hi-8 camcorder. The song, Death Blood Kill, was a darkly-comic tale of incest and puppy-slaughter. In a post-high daze, Justine uploaded the poor-quality video to YouTube, where it almost instantly became one of the most-ever viewed clips. The video was seen in early 2009 by music super-producer Killa Bee, and after a short negotiation with Bieber's shocked parents, Bee signed Bieber to his nascent indie label, KillaBitches. Two days later, Bieber was flown to Los Angeles to begin work on a studio version of the song.
Death Blood Kill
After several months, the studio-produced version of Death Blood Kill was released, in July 2009. It was described by many as "fairly dreadful". It received overall negative ratings, with one critic proclaiming, "this song made me bleed from my eye sockets, and not just because I tried to dig my brain out through them with a fork!" The lyrics of the song were criticized for their "artistic flaccidity", especially the following verse:
|A thousand bloody midgets
lie before me
Despite the scathing reviews, the song was a modest commercial success; undaunted by the song's mixed reception, Bieber returned to the studio to record her first full-length solo album.
In late 2009, Justine released her first full-length album, Dead People. Unlike her debut single, the album garnered widespread critical praise and commercial success, selling slightly more than 3.5 million copies in its first week, and setting a new record in the process. The first single released off this album was Guns Are Fun, which debuted at #1 on iTunes and remained there for 50 consecutive weeks. For the album, Bieber received a total of 23 Grammy® nominations, including one for "Best New Metal Artist"; she ended up sweeping all but two. Due to the album's enormous success, Justine quickly released a second album.
- Track Listing
- Intro (Death)
- Death For Money
- Guns Are Fun
- Puppy Massacre
- Oops, I Killed Your Mom
- U Die
- I Like Death
- One Death At A Time
- Double Kill
- One Less Living Girl
In 2010, Justine Bieber released her second album, titled "Massacre". While the critical reception of the album was, if possible, even higher than for her previous one, its reception by fans was considerably cooler, with some calling it a "disappointment." However, while its sales were not as strong as Dead People, Massacre sold just short of three million copies in the first week alone.
Massacre continues the thread of darkness and violence which pervaded Bieber's first album, with an emphasis on true-crime stories. Oops, I Killed Your Mom...Again is described as a "sequel" to the fifth track from Dead People; Farmville's story is based on an actual event where a woman killed her infant, allegedly for interrupting her game of Farmville; Armed Chicken is a reference to another actual event where a man was killed by his own fighting rooster. The title song, which is apparently an unedited, six-minute-long guttural howl, was released as the album's first single, and was certified platinum after only five weeks.
Shortly after Massacre's release in 2010, Justine announced that she was going to take a short break from recording, due to the strain of her hectic touring schedule; however, rumors abounded on the Internet that her break was caused by a strained vocal cord.
- Track Listing
- Shot, Dead
- Shot Heard 'Round The World
- I Like Blood
- To Kill 2 People With One Shot
- Oops, I Killed Your Mom...Again
- A World of Death
- Armed Chicken
Safety Off - EP
In 2011, Justine Bieber released a five-song EP to satisfy her clamoring fans. Critics called the EP "an absolute masterpiece", and gave it an average rating of 5 stars. The only single released off the EP was Crimson Tide, a song in which the narrator muses about committing a mass murder in Alabama, which results in a "blood tsunami".
- Track Listing
- Zombie Apocalypse
- Crimson Tide
- Dead Souls
Despite Bieber's much higher degree of recognition for her solo work, she continues to work with her bandmates in the Kittens, all of whom have repeatedly denied any feelings of resentment.
According to the "about" section of Justine Bieber's official fan website:
|Justine Bieber has definitely made a difference in the world. She has taught people that, even if someone dies, you can look at it as a good thing. We have all learned from her that death can be fun.
In 2011, Justine Bieber was awarded the Nobel Prize for Poetry, for her "accomplishments in darkly violent, visionary free-verse."