[Album Review] Invitation (1st Studio Album) – UP10TION

After 6 mini-albums, UP10TION had returned to the industry with their very first full-length studio album, Invitation. While they have yet to release a hit since their debut, this high-quality sounding album seems to confirm that this chart-topping track is just right around the corner. So let’s get this album review going! Per usual, I have left the intro track off the list.

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Invitation Album Cover

2. Candyland (Title Track)Click here to read the full review of Candyland. (7.7/10)

3. Target On (반해, 안반해) – Despite having a very standard instrumental, I think the song has potential to be a contender for the title track. Right off the bat, it suits the UP10TION’s sound. It had a great level of intensity and the chorus can be deemed as catchy. While I don’t have that much to say about it, I would return to the album to listen to this song. (9/10)

4. Finally (오늘이야) – In general, I liked the instrumental for this, particularly the drum beat. This pop song managed to showcase both the potential for the vocalists and the rappers of UP10TION. The fading out at the ended seemed a little force in my opinion. But other than that, its simplicity speaks volume, especially when we are continually inundated with EDM and more intense genres. And like the previous, it is another track that I would love to hear continuously. (9.5/10)

5. Habit (습관) – We have the first ballad on the album. The stormy sound effects do set the mood of the song, automatically making the song emotional. The start of the chorus was amazing and it is another ballad that has that swaying effect (which earns big ticks for me). The start of the rapping sequence was awkward but the rapping (overall) was decent. The change-up in the bridge was nice, while the vocalists got another chance to shine. (8/10)

6. Mixed Signals (모호해) – Opening Mixed Signals are some odd synths and a cough. And while it might be a little non-traditional, its uniqueness makes the song intriguing. I hope my ears are not playing tricks on me, but those some synths seem to play throughout the song (though very quietly). The song is perfect for hanging out on a Summer’s day. I particularly thought the bridge was cool and the drop into the final chorus made the final moments of the song pop out even more. (9/10)

7. Always (이대로) – Right off the bat, you get this cheerful sound from its uplifting instrumental. This makes the song pleasant and refreshing. Once again, the raps and vocals were on point. It features a catchy chorus and melodic hook. While the song does suffer from the ‘standard syndrome’, the group managed to nail its delivery very well. (9/10)

8. Superstar – I really like the ‘secret agent’ styled instrumental, which made his track feel quite cool. I also liked the ‘Superstar’ repetition at the start of the song (which was also played throughout the song). The chorus was also quite nice and it reminded me of a song that I just cannot think of right now. I think both the vocals and raps could have been more powerful, with some aggressive vibes fitting the instrumental perfectly. (8/10)

9. Love Sick – The song has this one guitar riff which I thought was awesome (just before the chorus). While we are also talking about the chorus, it was extremely explosive. I think the song could have benefited more if you listen to it with good speakers capable to inserting some bass into the song. I personally want to see a performance to this song and I think it is another track that could have rivalled the title track. (8/10)

10. Still With You (시간아 멈춰서) – This is the second ballad on the album and it is the one song that I am on the fence on. One part of me likes the normal pitched vocals, but I am not a fan of the falsetto vocals by Jinhoo here. Its effect is decent but it just felt pushy. Only the vocalists performed this song if I am not mistaken. And other than the falsetto, I think it was a decent track. (7/10)

11. I Need You (예고 없이) – I love the explosive nature of the instrumental of this track, which grabs your attention. It also is the one that features the rappers to an approximate level, who tend to be limited to a few seconds in some of their songs. And before you assume that I was not a fan of the falsetto songs here (I know, how contradicting of me), I think they were a much better match for the song. Once again, I would love to return to listen to this track, mainly due to its energy. (8/10)

Overall Album Rating – 8.3/10

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Invitation Individual Teasers (taken from Wishnote)

recommended red round grunge vintage ribbon stamp

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