[Junsu: Elisabeth] I just felt like this deserved a post of it’s own.

First of all, the stage production for this is absolutely stunning and breathtaking. This entire scene is just so fluid but chaotic, and the way the music crescendos up until the trigger is pulled and then the stage is doused in blackness — I, I just can’t. ;_;

Secondly, Junsu is an amazing performer. The way he carries himself on stage with such confidence, it’s just the sexiest thing ever. If I was ever having bias trouble before this, well, Junsu has regained his number one position has King of my Heart.

Thirdly, well… Come on guys.

(Also, the Big Bang Alive review is coming. I swear.)

[Single Review] Blue, Big Bang: Beautifully Blue

Ah, if anything could break me out of my dead-blogger streak, then it’s Big Bang. My favourite quintet dropped the first single ‘Blue’ from their new mini-album ‘Alive’ four days ago. And despite the many reservations felt when their concept photos were released, I’m finding myself really enjoying this wistful tune.

I know this has been discussed ad nauseum, but last comeback it felt like Big Bang just went through with it for the sake of having a comeback. The whole platter of material we were met with just seemed so anti-climatic, and something tells me that the whole promotional cycle would have completely gone through a neutral K-pop fan. I mean, it felt like miss A dropped more bombs during their promotional cycle than Big Bang did — miss A. But whatever, that was the past, this is the present. And the present is sounding good.

Contrary to popular belief, I don’t want Big Bang to completely revert back to their old sound per say. Music evolves, and what sounded in time 10 years ago wouldn’t sound in time now (not to mention YG’s sound as a whole has completely changed, and Big Bang would stick out like a sore thumb). As much as we’d love artists to never change, for a mainstream idol group like Big Bang, adjusting is necessary. A good example of adjusting would be Brown Eyed Girls — they fit in with the time, but never really lost the spark that made their material theirs.

Last comeback it felt like G-Dragon wanted to record a minimalist electronic track and just grabbed four soloists together and made them sing. Big Bang? What Big Bang? They got some of the flare back for ‘Love Song’, but as a whole everything seemed almost insincere. But, if the year of scandals did anything for Big Bang, then it gave them a good smack around the head because the magic is back for the most part.

‘Blue’ is a very self-effacing song. It doesn’t attempt to blow your mind, nor does it attempt to imitate another song. The melody is stead-fast, and the structure and style is consistent throughout; the verses, the bridge, and the chorus all have the same smooth delivery. It’s a restrained and doleful tune, but Big Bang deliver it with such conviction it doesn’t need to hit you over the head with a hammer to demand your attention, G-Dragon’s croons of ‘I’m singing my blues’ does a good enough job.

Something which I love about ‘Blue’ is the fact it’s innovative, a quality that set Big Bang apart back in the days, and a quality which they somewhat lost during their last comeback. ‘Blue’ is different from a lot of the sounds we’re hearing from K-pop today. For one, when was the last time a mainstream idol group released a mellow song as a title track? Secondly, ‘Blue’ is probably the closest Big Bang has come to returning back to their older style, but at the same time it sounds so 2011/2012 — which is a good thing. It’s them kind of adjusting their style to fit the ‘now’, and the ‘now’ really isn’t all that bad. It sounds fresh, it’s different, but it isn’t a style that’s so beyond the Big Bang we’ve come to know. Which is something I greatly appreciate from any band I love.

As for the music video; what the frack? YG videos are always impeccably shot and styled, but a quite a few of them lack direction. This is one of those music videos that basically go nowhere. And seeing how tainted my usual eye-candy has become (Spockri, do not want), there’s even less redeeming this mess. Whatever YG, whatever. This might as well have been shot for a New York tourism ad.

4.5/5

[Exo Planet] YYJ Releases a New Single

Whatever. If I was to rank this against Yoo Young Jin’s RnB compositions, it’d be near the ‘meh’ end.

I always knew EXO-K would be more popular than EXO-M, but it sucks more now because EXO-M is obviously hotter.

Okay, snark aside. I’m going to make this short, because I’m really not impressed. I think this is more a teaser over anything, and if so then it’s one of the least impressive ones. Everything about this song is so obviously from YYJ’s womb, there’s nothing about it that makes it special to EXO. And I know you guys probably think I’m in over my head for saying this, since they haven’t debuted yet, but the audio I heard in the earlier teasers really made it sound like these guys had  a good style going on. But ‘What Is Love’ could be sang by any other SM power-vocal group, SM The Ballad, KRY, SHINee, DBSK, and I wouldn’t even blink an eye — but that’s that’s pretty much the deal with most of YYJ’s RnB creations. In fact, I think the latter four bands would do a better job of making it their own. Which although expected since they’re more experienced, is also not wanted because this is meant to be EXO’s song. HELLO? The fact YYJ is literally singing 80% of this doesn’t make anything any better.

On a more positive note, Lu Han is in the running for FAVOURITE. His voice reminds me of a less pitchy version of Ryeowook’s voice, which asdfghjkl, we all know how I feel about Wook’s voice right? It’s like a bell, so striking. Come on Tao, win back your place soon.

[EXO Planet] We Should All Bias EXO

Seriously guys, just give up and bias these guys. I know all we’ve heard is snippets from teasers, but the material we’re hearing in the teasers are far superior than anything SM has given DBSK, Super Junior, and SNSD. To be honest, yes, I am spiteful. But at the same time I’m glad — because this means SM still has the knack for creating amazing things. Something which I thought it lost a while ago.

How gorgeous does this song sound? Just that small sound clip in the teaser tugged at my heartstrings. It was hopeful, soaring, passionate, and- I can’t ;_; Too many emotions already. Dude, I can not wait for their full album to drop — because I need to hear these tracks in their CDQ glory. I’m presuming these teasers aren’t completely irrelevant to the song because of the credits at the bottom of the video, and SM can’t troll us that badly.

So far my favourite song is the one seen in Se Hun and Lu Han’s teaser (are all these guys dancers, where’s the singing?), but I’m also really digging ‘My Lady’, the song heard in Kai’s teasers. It sounds so smooth and slow, but not boring slow, sexy slow.

Whilst the other songs aren’t drop-dead stunning like the ones above, you can’t deny that the production quality of these songs are several notches better than that of their seniors. If they’re consistent with this, and we aren’t being trolled, I see an amazing album coming our way. I’m still a bit concerned with how the promotions for both groups are going to go — and I’ve expressed my reservations on Seoulbeats’ roundtable, but I can’t deny good material when I see it. And this is some good material.

As said, I’m still a little bit bitter that SM didn’t give the same material to their senior groups, because yes I do have my biases, and I do like seeing my biases do well. But hopefully this new good material for EXO is a sign of great things to come. Probably not. But a girl can hope.

And Kai… yes, I know. Kai. I’m not mad over it, if anything I find it sort of hilarious. If it’s true that SM are going to release 36 teasers (please don’t be true), then I wouldn’t fret it. We’re going to see the other members whether we like it or not. You guys can all hold on to the flames till until after he actually debuts.

Bias? Yes, it’s Tao. His teaser has no dancing or singing involved at all. And honestly, it’s highly probable that he’s not going to be a good singer, and his dancing is probably going to be limited to ‘hey, I can do the choreography well’. But hey, I’m a sucker for flashy showmanship. And his teaser is the only one that left me actually gawking. So until the teaser for my Jino-bb (yeah, I’m calling him ‘bb’ already) is released, well… Come at me, Tao. Come at me.

Also, 12 members. Please. That should be nothing by now. And look, skinship!!!!

(Also, when is Chen’s teaser going to be shown? The boy can sing!)

[General K-Pop] Kids React to K-Pop, I Grimace

Just so you know, I don’t like any of these kids react videos. Mostly because of the pretentious air that comes from most of them — whilst I don’t hate them for acting pretentious (being a former Queen of Pretentiousness myself) — it isn’t something I particularly like to watch. So basically I headed into this video expecting to be irked, and I got what I expected.

There seems to be two stances to this video. K-Pop fanboys/fangirls are butthurt, threatening the kids, deluded, can’t take criticism. And the rational K-Pop fans are supposedly laughing their asses off and rolling on the floor.

Well, I’ve always considered myself to be a rational K-Pop fan, but I’m not laughing.

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[End Of Year/Album Post] Play the Song Again – Jams of ’11

I always knew I was special. Australia is a whole day ahead of the rest of the world when it comes to New Years, and I’m still two days delayed. That’s talent, it really is.

Most bloggers I realised, do a really epic year-end post outlining the best of the best. They also usually do this a a day or so before, or on the day, of New Years — not two days later like me. I wanted to outline some of my favourite things this year, but in the midst of writing things I realised I’m way too type-happy and to finish the post would take several days. So instead because I’m a special, I’ve decided to try something different. So as a New Years gift for everyone, I’ve made an end of year album, so without further ado:

Play the Song Again – Jams of ’11

Play the Song Again – Jams of ’11

Tracklist:

  1. Superman – Super Junior
  2. Me, In – Wonder Girls
  3. Before U Go – DBSK
  4. Fiction – BEAST
  5. Na Young – ALi
  6. Please – Kim Hyun Joong
  7. In Heaven – JYJ
  8. Cry – MBLAQ
  9. Tonight – Big Bang
  10. Virgin – After School
  11. Neverland – U-KISS
  12. Trick – Girls’ Generation
  13. Roly Poly – T-ARA
  14. STEP – KARA
  15. Hate You – 2NE1
  16. VVIP – Seung Ri
  17. Sixth Sense – Brown Eyed Girls

Download Link: http://www.mediafire.com/?pavnevry5n29tdu

I hope you guys enjoy it! The title ‘Play the Song Again’, came from the song ‘Virgin’ by After School, and I decided on it as the album’s title because well, it pretty much sums up the effect all these songs have had on me.  Also, I’m horrendously uncreative.

Honestly a lot of thought was put into making this album, and I realised it’s harder to make a cohesive album than I thought (not that it excuses the entertainment companies). I had so many thought processes going on — because by now everyone should know I take K-Pop and music seriously — and everything is where it is for a reason. To break it down for everyone:

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[Album Review] SOUL-RI, ALi: A Polished Gem

Amongst all the controversy surrounding ALi’s album track ‘Nayoungie’, the song which she wrote for the rape victim going under the pseudonym ‘Nayoung’, and following her recent confession of having been raped back in 2008, I actually decided to check out her album. And I am impressed, I am impressed beyond belief. And I hope that the negative reception the song ‘Nayoungie’ recieved doesn’t take away from how people perceive the album as a whole.

ALi isn’t a singer, she is a sanger. She has a rich, beautiful and unique voice, and skills and technique which allow her to pull off vocal runs and belt it like her life depends on it. Basically, the sky is the limit when it comes to what singers like her are capable of (well, to be honest. The sky and her at times grating vocals — but I’ll get into that later). However, in most cases with singers with as much talent as she has, they tend to box themselves into the one genre of ballads — and that’s okay if that is what they love singing. But just know, that if the majority of their solo discography is made up of ballads, well, their music just won’t find a fan in me (why yes, I am looking at your KRY, Jaejoong, IU, and whosays).

ALi in ‘SOUL-RI’ however, breaks out of that box. While her material isn’t exactly the stuff pop is made out of, the way her last single ‘Hey Mister’ was, she takes a different approach. In this album ALi dabbles in a mixture of pop, ballads, RnB and jazz inspired tunes, the instrumentals are laid back and let her vocals carry the melodies. And the melodies — some of the melodies are beautiful. They’re listless and while they don’t strike you over the head with a hammer, they’re pleasant to the ears and command attention in the subtlest of ways.

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