A/N: First of all, yes this is my first time doing an album review in this blog and I hope I am doing it right. I’m really clueless about this so forgive me if I commit some mistakes along the way. Yes, I think the blog is back with its regular programming and sorry if I the blog just returned after such a long time.
ODD is SHINee’s 4th studio album and unlike their previous albums, SHINee took a break from their usual ‘complextro’ and took on another step towards Pop-Dance this time. ODD is composed of eleven full-length tracks which were composed and written with the likes of Kenzie, The Jam Factory, The Underdogs even SHINee’s very own Kin Jonghyun and many more. So shall we start our track-by-track mini review? 🙂
It has been almost a year since f(x)’s second full length album, “Pink Tape”. Now, they’re back with RED LIGHT and ready to blow your minds once again. Even Billboard named them as a group who “solidifies brand of quirky…” and “hipster pop…” and I couldn’t agree more.
To be honest, I was expecting a whole lot from this album since PINK TAPE really blew my mind with its splendid colors! And after a number of plays, here’s what I have to say:
I wanna apologize for the delay of this album review. There had been lots of things going on (KPOP world and also with personal concerns), I hope that y’all would understand. 🙂
Akdong Musician, the fresh duo (slash siblings slash talented youngsters) under YG Entertainment, released their debut album entitled PLAY. Lee Chan-Hyuk and Lee Soo-Hyun made this album in their OWN liking (Lee Chan Hyuk composed and arranged all of these songs! Amazing right?) and has been sweeping off the charts for weeks now.
Do you know the reason behind the AKMU hype? If you don’t, then you better read this review. 😉
FOUR, the number of years BLACKJACKS have waited for 2NE1 to release their second album.
FINALLY, on February 27, CRUSH was digitally released while the physical album was released later (7th of March).
2NE1 is known for being fierce and unique, did this album prove that they still have it, or did it crush your expectations?
♠ ♣ ♥ ♦
I am your guest writer for today! You’ll know my name at the end of this review… *wink wink*
OH! I am not a professional music analyst. So pardon my inadequacy in using some terms here. I am just a lass who loves music, that’s all! 🙂
I must say that this album is something that really sets the mood and feel in Korea at the moment (In regards to their weather). It’s very chill; something you can listen to whenever you are having a long drive, chilling at a cafe by yourself, or if you just wanna drown yourself into sweet music, plug into this and you’ll be alright.
Now, let’s get into the tunes shall we?
an album review won’t be an album review if we won’t be reviewing the components that makes it right?
1. Intro-Prologue (Composed and Arranged by Jinyoung, Good Guy)
Usually, (from what I’ve heard from other artists’ albums) intros are songs that will last two minutes (max) and they all have lyrics. But this one is such an exception, because it is an instrumental. It starts of with this beautiful piano arrangement then slowly mixes up with the guitar and harmonica. Have I told y’all that it also has that hint of nature’s sound? It’s very subtle and cozy. This will surely lead you to the story/feel that the album is about to unfold.
2. Lonely (Composed by Jinyoung / Lyrics by Jinyoung, Baro / Arranged by Jinyoung, Perfume)
Lonely starts off with a beat that somehow reminded me of One Republic’s Good Life but this is definitely a B1A4 original because of the charm that only they can pull off.
I kinda felt weird about this at first, because of how it was sung. Like the fluctuation of the tone of the voice of the first two sentences per verse… (I don’t know if you get what I’m saying, but yeah.) Anyway… I find this song as something that a guy would sing or think about when he just got dumped by his love. With all the reminiscing of those happy moments with this special someone, it’s like, he just can’t and won’t believe that he is with no one anymore; that he was left by someone he truly cares about. At first, I can’t really see the loneliness in this song but as the song goes, you can finally feel the pain. Everything starts to sink in: the pain, the emptiness, the memories that were easily forgotten, and the feeling of being left behind.
Gah! I feel bad for the protagonist of this song. In the end, he just wants to spend a little time with the girl, just to make him feel that he is still somehow worthy of her time.
“If only I can walk with you again
If only we can walk together again
Baby I just wanna spend some time with you“
3. When In Love/Love Then feat. Ha Rim (Composed and Lyrics by Jinyoung / Arranged by Jinyoung, Good Guy)
This song has an upbeat tune, wrapped with painful lyrics. I really love the harmonica part (Ha Rim) at the beginning of the song. Is it me or does it really bring a country feel to it? I also love how the song turns into a timeless tune. And hearing Baro sing in this one just makes my heart flutter. Love Then is a story of a man who WAS in pain but he learned how to move on. He managed to turn all the negativity of the past into something that would inspire him to be a happy person. It’s amazing how he can think of all the good memories instead of the bad ones. I guess that’s just how love goes. You fall in love, then hurt if he/she is not the one, then when you finally feel that it’s time to move on, you feel a lot better; believing that things do happen for a reason and that it’s better to be reminded by the happiness of the past than be haunted by it. Just as what Dr. Seuss said, “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”
“Love back then gave me happiness
But in the end, it gave me the sadness of breaking up
Breaking up back then gave me sadness
But now it gives me good memories rather than pain”
4. Amazing (Composed by Price, Timothy James / Lyrics by CNU, Baro)
Now, Amazing is a song that you can hear on the radio non-stop. It’s a pop song that will melt every girl’s heart. When I heard this, it certainly got me! I found myself singing the OOH~ OOH~ part and I was bopping my head from side to side. I was smiling while listening to this song. I also felt that if a guy sings this to me, I will definitely fall for him. Who wouldn’t anyways? Isn’t it sweet to hear that you are considered as AMAZING by a guy? I also thought that this could have been their first single off the album, but then again, it may seem so similar with What’s Going On that’s why they chose Lonely instead; it patterns with what the winter brings and it’s different from their last song. (That’s just my theory guys, don’t get me wrong!haha)
“Because you’re by my side, I feel safe
Cause you’re so Amazing Amazing Amazing…to me”
5. Baby (Composed by Jinyoung / Lyrics by Jinyoung, Baro / Arranged by Jinyoung, Good Guy)
This is my favorite song out of the album. It’s sounds very R&B, and it adds up to the feeling of the song. The beginning welcomes you into a magical three minute and 56 second ear candy. Their voices are very enchanting…
but, what is it with all these sad and painful lyrics? It crushes my heart!
With this one, it’s very sad because it showcases the art of letting go. He loves her too much, but she’s not happy anymore. So he decides to let go. Isn’t that painful? It’s like saying “I love you” but it meant nothing to your receiver anymore. The most painful part is that he/she is happy about the goodbye, and here you are, tormented by it.
“I’m sorry baby be baby babe
I can’t say anything else but this
Though it’ll be hard, I’ll try to forget you, good bye
As I enjoy a cup of herbal tea
I can’t figure out those eyes anymore
If I’m the reason you left
I’ll beg you, if only you will come back to me girl”
6. Oh My God (Composed by Park Kang Il / Lyrics byPark Kang Il, Baro / Arranged by Park Shin Won)
This is the song that Park Shin Won, Park Shin Hye’s brother, made for B1A4.
Finally! A song about a guy who hates a girl because she broke his heart. This seldom happens in Kpop, and I am just happy that this song adds to the list. Cheers to this song! I just hate how guys are seen as the antagonists in a relationship, most of the time. Well, we girls are often victims indeed but, I think that it’s about time that guys speak their hearts out! That they have been victimized too. That they are not stupid to believe that it’s always their fault. I love how the song gives the feeling that the guy is smirking because now, he knows the reason why the relationship ended. Starting with that phone call (at the beginning of the song) and how it was entwined with the upbeat tune of the guitar. Now, he can move on with his life… but I hope that the anger will soon fade away… (hehe)
“Oh my god, I hate you, girl!
Don’t do this, I can pretend I didn’t notice at least this once”
7. Overwhelmed/Too Much (Composed, Lyrics, Arranged by Noh Joo Hwan, C-NO)
This song is very mellow. Accompanied by violins and the piano, this will surely make you feel that you are in a KDrama with this as a part of your OST. Just imagine yourself seeing someone for the first time after a very long time (a loved one, friend, a special someone), longing to have a conversation but all you can do is watch from afar. Painful isn’t it? It’s like you can’t even show how important this person is to you anymore. That’s what I felt when I was listening to this.
Sandeul and Gongchan sang their hearts out in this one. Their vocal ranges are unbelievable. How they expressed the feeling of the song is simply perfect.
“Missing you is like a bottomless ocean, I keep emptying you out”
8. Pretty (Composed by Jinyoung / Lyrics by Jinyoung, Baro, CNU / Arranged by Jinyoung, Good Guy)
This song is (probably) the Korean Version of Bruno Mars’ Just The Way You Are! What makes this extra special is that it’s more precise as to what the guy likes about the girl and believe it or not, it is more flattering.
I love how the song starts off with a fresh sound, like the break of day. Let me say that these boys know how to make us girls fall in love with them. Hearing them say that “You are pretty” and that he can’t stop looking at you will (again) make girls fall on their knees and just be mesmerized by the sweetness and sincerity of the guy. To all the men out there: If you tell this to your girl, she will never leave you. She would definitely have more self-confidence and she will love you even more, each day of your lives. ❤
“Even if you erase your makeup, you’re pretty, whatever you wear, you’re pretty
Oh in my eyes, baby, you’re so pretty
No matter how much I look at you, even if I look at you hundreds of times, you’re pretty
Oh in my eyes, you’re the prettiest”
9. Who Am I (Composed, Arranged by Jinyoung, Good Guy / Lyrics by Jinyoung, Baro, Good Guy)
“Dancing the night away” is definitely the theme of this song.This is the jam to dance to at a club/party with your peers and just have a good time. I don’t know why, but I can see Icona Pop rocking to this with B1A4…yep, me and my weird thoughts. haha
The lyrics are precisely what the song is about. It is taking an adventure of your life; an adventure to learn more about yourself. This could be an anthem of the youth and the young at heart. This song just states that, there’s no time for worries because they won’t help you anyways. It’s time to seize the moment and chase all those worries away.
“Hands up high to the sky
hands up spread your wings
Follow the starlight”
10. Drunk with Music (Composed by CNU, Joo Young, Go Hyung Suk / Lyrics by CNU / Arranged by Go Hyung Suk)
Drunk with Music is CNU‘s solo in the album. I can somehow picture this song in the late 70s. It is because of the “funk jived with pop” feel of it. CNU’s voice in this kind of song just makes me feel that he’s an old soul with a very youthful vibe. I love his voice a whole lot.
This reminded me of Michael Jackson’s Rock With You, making me want to go to the 70s and bring disco back in 2014. I don’t know why but CNU sounded a bit flirty here. (it’s all good, man… 😉 ) (and I have to say that this is my second favorite song off the album, I also like tunes that will make your body move, wherever you are)
“Drunk with music, rockin’ my body
This song is going to make you dance oh my baby“
11. ROAD (Composed, Lyrics, Arranged by Lee Gi, Yong Bae / Lyrics by Baro)
Road reminds me of childhood memories and friends. I love how this song can bring back all those thoughts. It gives importance on how friendship started and how it should last. I like how youthful and nostalgic it sounds, it really takes you back in time.
“I hope you didn’t forget the promise we made together
That we can smile when we meet again, I hope you won’t change“
12. Seoul (Composed by CNU / Lyrics by CNU, Baro / Arranged by Go Hyung Suk)
This song in particular gives the listener the city and cafe feel. Again, this song is on the R&B side. I admire how this song gives a jazzy flavor with that type of distortion/effect of the guitar in the background, and the bass line is well crafted. B1A4’s voices in this song just wraps up everything into perfection. It has a very cool vibe. Seoul makes you want to go to the city and experience the care that only a Seoul city guy could bring.
“Oh my girl relax your mind
I’ll kiss your eyes, your nose, your lips
I always love you, I want to fall asleep with you tonight”
-end of review-
After listening to Who Am I, I found myself being fond of B1A4’s future projects. I have to tell you that this album is not your typical KPOP album out in the market today. It is one of those albums that you can listen to, whenever; wherever. I am sure that this will be timeless, because it was not overproduced nor underproduced. It was well made and doesn’t sound like something that is over thought about. I somehow worry about the tracklist though. Seoul should have been a second to the last song, because I felt like it is not suppose to be the “ending” of it. The level of excitement is still set up high. It doesn’t deserve to be the denouement of the story. I don’t know. Maybe it’s just me… bleh…
B1A4 is a promising group. Honestly, I am not a BANA but I am very impressed on how they grew within a short period of time. I look forward to their future projects and I believe that they will go places as long as they continue to grow and develop even more.
OH! Don’t forget to purchase the album, click here!
(guest writer/author for Try A Little Kpop)
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