Songwriter Poo Bear has written dozens of hit songs for acts like Big Boi, Chris Brown, Big Sean, Pink, and Usher to name a few. His influence has created a greater shape for Justin Bieber‘s new album than any other collaborator, and he says the pop star’s album that’s due out November 13 will be in some high company — he’s calling it his very own Thriller.
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Bear (née Justin Boyd) talked about the process of making the album and how unquestionably massive it’s going to be.
“It’s incredible. And if I had to compare it to something, not the sound of it but the impact and amount of songs that are undeniable, I would have to compare it to Thriller.”
Bear, who prior to working with Justin Bieber was known for working with R&B acts like 112, said that his past work has greatly influenced Bieber’s turn toward straight-forward R&B and less pop-oriented sounds.
There would be times where I would bring up, like ‘Hey, can we do some EDM, a little electronica with a hint of R&B? He’d be like, ‘No, I want to sing R&B.’ In the back of my mind I’m like, ‘Man. I’m working with the biggest pop star in the world, and we’re doing R&B.’ I love R&B because it got me to where I am today, but at the same time R&B just doesn’t sell.”
Bear’s influence is clear on Journals, easily Bieber’s best album to date, as well as Bieber’s most recent singles “What Do You Mean?” and “Where Are U Now?” Both were written by Bear and feature a much more intimate sound then Bieber’s early work, a trend that Bear says will continue into the new album.
“You’ll get to hear him really get intimate with things that he went through in his life in the last couple of years, so that people can understand him, kind of like with ‘Human Nature.’ Big, powerful records that everyone can listen to. This album is so inspirational.”