Review: Bruno Mars – It’s Better If You Don’t Understand

The It’s Better If You Don’t Understand EP was released only as a digital download on May 11, 2010 by Elektra Records in the United States and in France on August 11, 2010 by Atlantic Records to iTunes. The French edition of this EP does not feature Count on Me on the tracklist. Fueled By Ramen helped with digital distribution.

It’s Better If You Don’t Understand was the debut EP written and composed by Hawaiian rapper Bruno Mars. All the songs for his debut EP were produced by The Smeezingtons. All of the songs from the It’s Better If You Don’t Understand EP were later included on Bruno Mars’ debut album, Doo-Wops & Hooligans later that year.

In 2010, Bruno Mars decided it was time for him to make his debut into the music industry. He released this EP so people could understand that he was a “real artist”. He decided to embark his music career into the digital download market as a business move before making any of his albums or EPs available as physical copies. Bruno Mars wrote songs that strongly came from his emotions and experiences. Most if not all of these songs are geared towards being pop oriented with a minor hip hop touch. The EP’s title came from the final lyrics of the song The Other Side.

Somewhere in Brooklyn is the opening song to his debut EP. The theme and mood are romantic. Somewhere in Brooklyn was produced by The Smeezingtons.

The song takes place in Brooklyn, New York where Bruno Mars meets a girl while he was waiting for his train to arrive. He develops an interest in this girl through the song. The whole premise of the song is Bruno Mars finding the perfect woman that got away in Brooklyn.

The song begins with Bruno Mars chasing a girl. This 21 years old girl was covered in expensive flashy clothing of leather and gold. Bruno Mars lost her in the cold somewhere in Brooklyn. It gets as cold as 21ºF degrees (-6ºC). Cold is the way Bruno Mars felt when he lost track of her hence the sadness. Cold is used as metaphor also in this case. Anyway, Bruno Mars knows she’s somewhere in Brooklyn.

It all started when Bruno Mars was waiting at a train station in Brooklyn, New York. At the train station is where he meets a girl. The two start talking. This is where he started to get really interested in her, however the girl’s train arrives and she has to leave before her train departs. This leaves Bruno Mars with just a memory of her. The only thing he knows is that she was somewhere in Brooklyn.

He starts searching everywhere for her. He circled around the Flatbush and Greenpoint neighborhoods of New York City. He checked every shop. He asks people if they have heard of this girl. He then later goes back to the train station in hopes of finding her. Sadly he has no luck of finding her as she is nowhere to be found. He feels an arraign of disappointment because of this. He wishes he could find her again.

The Other Side features Cee Lo Green and B.o.B.! The song is a vocal collaboration amongst the three. The Other Side is about the lifestyle you live when you’re an artist. This song showcases the darker side of Bruno Mars. Many music critics consider this song to be the best song from the EP. This song can be described as a pop song due to its pop sound since this was a pop ballad with a hip hop touch layered over rap.

The whole song discusses how Bruno Mars, Cee-Lo, and B.o.B live in a different world compared to the normal citizen. People would not understand unless they have actually been there to experience it. When people get there, they tend not to appreciate it as much, so in this case it would be better if they just didn’t understand at all. They live in a whole different world.

Being in the realm of stardom, fame, and fortune is the barrier that divides the normal citizen from the upper class (elite class). Being on the other side is a metaphor for becoming elite. Bruno Mars made sacrifices to get to “the other side” by selling his soul and conforming to music industry standards set by corporate executives.

He has made the sacrifices it takes to get to this other side, selling his soul to the devil and therefore becoming a monster. The fame, fortune, and stardom is not cracked up it’s made to be. People just don’t understand. B.o.B. explains reality of fame is nothing like a dream.

Count On Me was inspired by songwriting of both Jason Mraz and David Cook. The song has a laid back vibe with a tropical music influence. The song is about comfort found inside of a friend. The song is also about being present for those who are important in your life.

At the beginning is where Bruno Mars explains that it is nice to have a friend when things are going right, even when times get tough. Counting on someone only to have them count on you is a balancing at. It’s sharing a friendship that counts. Being loyal to a friend is a part of friendship. Being loyal does not work in all friendships however. There are some friendships that have an all-take-no-give relationship. Those relationships usually don’t last long.

Bruno Mars explains how he is a good friend in the bridge. He shows an example of being loyal in a friendship as a friend.

You’ll always have my shoulder when you cry
I’ll never let go
Never say goodbye

Talking to the Moon is the closing song for his debut EP. The instrumentation used is percussion and piano. The song was written in using the key of C# minor set at 4|4 time signature. This song uses chord progression in the vocals. Its tempo is 73 BPM.

Sadly his debut EP failed to achieve commercial success peeking only at #99 on the Billboard 200 for only one week. Yet it peaked at #13 on the Billboard Digital Albums chart. The EP was not a top charting bestseller. The EP failed to chart anywhere else besides the UK and France.

I rate this EP 5/5*****!

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