EXO, now composed of ten members, came back with a stunningly made album “EXODUS”, showcasing each of the members’ improved skills in singing and rapping. It only goes to show that their group is totally moving forward to what happened in their last comeback. We welcome the new and improved faces of the group.
Stronger and Sexier. These are the two things that I saw in this album. More hip thrusts, flirtatious lines that will surely make the fangirls faint. From school boys who transformed into wolves, to sexy men in a cool sports car, let’s see and dig deeper to what has improved on each of the tracks on this album.
Let’s get right to it, shall we? Continue reading
…and to complete this set of EXO teaser photos, here is two-thirds of the beagle line – Chen & Baekhyun.
As oppose to what everyone is expecting, Baekhyun also has that “reflectionless” teaser photo as Chen stares through the camera with all his charm.
Please stay in touch with us as we all wait for further information & teasers for this EXO-K & EXO-M comeback!
EXO-K & EXO-M will be having their comeback showcase for their 2nd mini-album on April 15 at Jamsil Stadium entitled “EXO Comeback Show” sponsored by Samsung Music and you can watch the live stream of the said event on Samsung Music’s website.
I was tasked (I volunteered, actually) to make an album review for SM the Ballad’s “BREATH”. I got very excited and today, I am much honored to be the second ‘guest author’ in this blog (Yes, I am a guest author). So, I will save the introduction for later :)) .
So, last February 13, 2014, SM Entertainment released the most awaited album, entitled “BREATH”. With the gathering of the new line- up of artists to sing for the album, it surely is interesting to see another concept that defies love in an instance. It consists of 10 tracks, including three versions (Korean, Japanese and Chinese) of the songs ‘Breath’ and ‘Blind’.
The day I watched the teaser for the full album, I concluded that it is a compilation of BREAK- UP songs. The album is a story that is being unfolded at each of the tracks, and it created a very successful portrayal of “Heart Break”. Cheers to SM! Anyway, let’s get right through the tracks, shall we?
Note: The following plot is made from the writer’s weird imagination. Some parts of the plot came from the lyrics, others are just for internet humor.
**A melody starts off. The clouds are not in good terms with the reader’s feelings. There goes thunder and rain, a story is about to be seen, DEAR**
This one is a good starting point before hearing the full album itself. I consider this one- minute audio as the ‘mood setter’. With the sound of the rainfall, to the slow piano melody and to the mixing of orchestral sadness, this gradually made my very jolly day into a very sad one. A very effective start for the upcoming BREAK- UP songs.
** Both people are holding their phones and they are waiting for each other’s calls. Both are reminiscing good memories and keep letting out a sigh while tears fall to their faces. Each of them shows that they regret their parting to each other, and that they still both love each other the same way as before. They both want to achieve one thing, which is to at least hear each other’s BREATH (Award- Winning Plotline Level: SM)**
2. BREATH (sung by Taeyeon (SNSD) and Jonghyun (SHINee) in Korean, f (Krystal) and Changmin/Max (TVXQ!) in Japanese and Chen (EXO) and Zhang Li Yin in Chinese)
This is the best BREAK- UP song I have heard so far. This is the ballad that continues the melody of the first track ‘Dear…’ For what I have seen, it is has a very lonely tune that has a feeling of ‘REGRET’ to it. The lyrics of the song jive to the feeling of the melody itself, making it my frequently played song on this album. Also, even when you watch the music video of this song, it creates the most intense gloom. A complete package for a BREAK- UP song. Since it has three versions, the version which struck me the most? I’ll leave it up to you people. (Those three versions are freaking good I can’t even choose which is better!)
** In the aftermath, a man had a great loss for his love. He blamed himself for being too into her that it made her tired. The crucial time where he realized that ‘love’ is already gone, ‘greed’ came on a rise instead. He was too BLIND to see it at first. The man tries to forget the past but finds it very hard to do for his love still remains for her.**
3. BLIND (sung by Yesung (Super Junior) in Korean and Japanese, and Zhoumi (Super Junior-M) in Chinese)
This song is the best representation of how can love gets to a point that it is too CRAZY to continue. In the lyrics it literally described HEART- BREAK as VERY CRAZY THAT IT LEFT A VERY CRAZY DEEP SCAR (soo crazy). This song created a good feeling that the listeners can relate and follow through until the end of the song. It taught me a great lesson: BEWARE, OVERFLOWING LOVE KILLS. LOVE MODERATELY. I can say it is a hell of a good story. (fan-fic worthy, everyone!)
**The boy thinks it’s too easy for her to forget their love, but it was the same instance for her. She tries to put those good memories on a blur but it gets clearer after. She kept on shedding tears. Therefore she shouted…**
4. SET ME FREE (sung by Taeyeon of SNSD)
I love this song as well. I think it is the girl version of the song Blind, looking like it is the response of the girl to what the man is feeling right now. For what I have experienced, the lyrics are so remarkable that everyone can follow through unlike other songs that do not repeat the same lines.
Looking at the plot, you can feel the way the woman tries so hard to forget those past memories of them, resembled to the song as her precious stones to him. The heartfelt melody gradually puts you into sadness that the song should give. Nice Job Taeyeon.
**After some time, the man has moved on, and he disregards what his love would be thinking on what he does before. He is now thinking only for himself. But he still remembers those good days, feeling like he already had no reason for his doings to be hated nor loved. (The writer stops his too heartfelt plot and goes on shopping. He sees Chen of EXO, got excited for some time. Being an EXO-stan, he gets back to typing his album review and tries not to be too biased about his review for “A DAY WITHOUT YOU”)**
5. A DAY WITHOUT YOU (sung by Jonghyun of SHINee Chen of EXO)
(I LOVE IT I LOVE IT I SO. LOVE. IT!! CHEAN IS SINGING THEN.. oops, sorry XD) *coughs. Let’s get straight to the point.
The slow beat in this song slightly gets rid of all the sadness in the earlier songs, since it changes from very sad to moderately-sad-to-happy state. It’s simply exceptional to see how the flow of the tracks in this album gradually changes your mood. (When I hear this song I feel like shopping, which is my unique compliment.) In the song, it was described that he feels free after his break- up with his love, but he is still longing for her.
It’s a good duet by Jonghyun and Chen. I also like the part where they said, “I can’t believe, yes it’s true…” in English. Their extraordinary vocal ranges always give me goosebumps, a good blend of singers in a nice song.
**Both stated: “WHEN I WAS with you, WHEN YOU WERE with me, we used to have those good times. I keep on recalling them. But today, I think it’s time to really let go of that feeling. Like what they say, there will come a time where we will change. I hope you will be happy. Goodbye.” And thus ended their wonderful love to each other… *END**
6. WHEN I WAS… WHEN U WERE…(sung by f (Krystal) and Chen of EXO)
This song is so meaningful it made my mind appreciate love and acceptance. Each line of the lyrics is closely related to each other, signifying love and its deep connection to the seasons. It’s also fun to read in the lines of the song in which it recalls the good things that happened with his/her love, and they look at it positively than before. As what the song says, ‘seasons endlessly change’, and therefore the same as through with love: it endlessly changes until we find the right kind of meaning to it, with the right one at your side.
The melody of the guitar and more feels like it came from Flower Boy Next Door OST. It fits in the part where they look afar from each other through their glass walls and windows. It’s a good HEART BREAK song that keeps its melody moderately up. The part where the long ‘ooohs’ occur gives me a relaxing feeling. It’s a nice song, my favorite song in the album as well.
All in all I liked all the songs in the Album ‘BREATH’ . A nice way to see SM Entertainment do some artist collaborations to keep making and developing wonderful voices, as to what is present, showcasing their balladeers. Even though I used the word ‘HEART BREAK’ six times and made a plot for this album, I hope to see another volume of SM the Ballad that did a great job this year. Congratulations SME!
By the way, thank you very much to Try A Little Kpop for this opportunity.
SM the Ballad’s Breath? We got this Pen Sealed! (My blog: http://pensealed.wordpress.com/ )
I am finally reviewing EXO! Weee~! What ever happened to my Wolf and Growl review will be revealed on the next couple of days in another post, so for the meantime, let’s review Miracles in December.
There are five possibilities that happened to you regarding these EXO boys this year (a) You are an EXO fan from the start so you just brush off haters because “Hey! This group is awesome, just wait and see” (b) You absolutely hate Wolf and thought your friends were plain crazy about loving them like “What was that?!” (c) Then Growl was out and you can’t seem to stop listening to them and “Oh! That Kai guy and Lay guy can both dance!” (d) You made your most stoic expression and said “No, still not liking them. They can’t even sing for crying out loud!” (e) BaekChenSoo and BaekChenLu started singing ballad and you were “These guys can sing! Why was that panda-looking guy started crying? No don’t cry….*sobs with him*”. So whether you are now throwing them all the love you have or you are still hating them; these boys, there’s no denying, have made it big this year! From awwwooou-ing to growling they have stolen hearts without you even noticing. What did they call that again? EXO Syndrome? Yeah, something like that and when you have contracted it, there’s no turning back!
I would like to discuss their cover photo for a moment, I don’t know about you and I don’t mean to offend the group or anyone but I was a bit stunned and confused the first time I saw their album cover photos spreading on twitter then I laughed. I really thought they look funny the whole time that I nearly fall of my bed. Who in this world thought that from Tree of Life it will eventually be a Christmas Tree? They’re cute though.
This carrier single does not feature the entire group, since it is ballad, the highlight was just their “vocal line” (Baekhyun, Chen, D.O. and the variation of Baekhyun, Chen, Luhan) and yes, this has two versions (you know the drill right?) Korean and Chinese since SM debuted this boy group as EXO-K and EXO-M so there are always two versions and whether you like one over the other it does not even matter because as of this year, they were performing as a whole, so yeah, They are ONE! (Please remember that)
And back to the song, the song is really heart wrecking from the moment that piano hit its first couple of notes. You just can’t help but feel that serene atmosphere of being hurt that yes, this is a song that is intended for you to sob all over the place and break your heart into pieces. The lyrics even dared to admit that it was the guy’s fault and he just realized it now after all these time and he was telling you that he was sorry for neglecting you when you are still together and until now, he’s still waiting and he’s rather going crazy waiting for you. It was rather romantic and sad at the same time (and we all secretly wish that there are still guys like that out there).
The MV feels cozy and a bit effervescent at the same time. If regret can be visualized and be somehow be felt through the screen, I felt that through those regret scenes that they have especially that scene where the vocal line were back to back and the background were revolving sad scenes from the other members. It looks like you were traveling through someone’s sadness. Although I felt really sad through the entire MV (the EXO members and the director and the staff did well) I still have one question though; What’s with the piano in a desert-like SM box-set decorated with gigantic crystals and some broken pieces of stones which looks like it came out of a Superman movie? Are relaying to us that this “regret” that they have is their Kryptonite just like Superman? Is it the reason why they kept repeating that song line with “useless powers” in the song? Did I just decode the greatest EXO mystery on Earth at the moment? Hehe…. Whatever the set decorators’ reason for that, this Superman-themed theory is all I have at the moment. So yeah. But I still don’t love that Superman set though, they could’ve just played the piano and sang on a normal living room and they will have the same sad vibe for that scene. Oh well, their MV, their rules. What kept me amazed until the very end was the part where Tao turned back time and everything, well, went to a rewind and even the snow fall winded back like Ha! I never thought they would really do that then the vocal line rewind thing.
EXO’s acting somehow improved through this year, they are still not the best but I guess you know what mean. You could see the progress from Wolf to this video. Who would have thought that Tao can easily shed tears like that? I know Sehun looks like he was lacking emotions when he should have been hurt but you can still somehow feel a tinge of it in his eyes. Maybe next time he could improve more.
If there’s a runner up for advertising things next to YG, here you go. It is SM! Have you seen the box of cosmetics that the boys are currently promoting in the video. Yup! Marketing, thy name is SM. But the biggest pun of all is not that. I really think that SM is a good listener especially when it comes to fan suggestions. See, remember the time we all said that Sehun would probably look good in all hair colors? Yeah, they made him look like the rainbow melted from the sky and the colors spilled on his head (he looked good still though). Now, we all call Kris Kriscasso for the pun side of it right? Hi there fans! We got it again! You know Kris has this knack for drawings right? (but drawings are not really fond of him somehow) Thus, Kris is painting…..(nothing) Ta~da! I think SM likes playing with us. It’s like a secret hobby of stalking us or something. It is a bit weird but yeah, at least you are sure that we are heard, right?
As a conclusion, I say that this song is the best song EXO has ever released yet and this was EXO’s year whether you accept it or not or whether it was due to the fans or not. C’mon! If there is no EXO whom will the fans cheer for? It won’t make any sense. Looking back at what they had went through; we all deserve to end this year happily, whether you are a fan or a member of EXO without one another it will all just result to none. So yes, Congratulations to them and to us! And from us to you, Advance Merry Christmas!
The Mini-Album Mini Reaction Corner!
– Christmas Day showcases the talent of SM in deriving comparisons to random things and love just like Rum Pum Pum Pum and growing your wisdom tooth. This time, we are the Christmas Day. Nonetheless, the beat is cool and the song was good.
– The Star was a bit out place in the entire album and it looks like they just forced it to jive with the rest of the songs but this is my thing so, yeah, I really don’t care but yeah, it was just thrown there.
-My Turn To Cry is like the runner up for Miracles for making you cry. What’s with this gloom with all these KPop songs these days?
– The First Snow is an acoustic ballad and, personally, my favorite song from the entire album. Although it still talks about separation and regret, it was a little upbeat and Christmas is supposed to be upbeat.
Yes, I know that in Korea Christmas is pretty much like a Valentines day thing. So if you happen to have no one for the event… uhmm…. yeah, don’t worry we’re pretty much single too right now. No pressure guys. Enjoy the very cold (No there’s no snow from where we are just very cold winds) weather and remember that you are not alone. Haha! Happy Christmas!
credits: SMTown YouTube channel