The first Past Album Review (PARs) of 2020 goes to B1A4. I thought I revisit them as it has been a while since we have heard from them (they are another group to have hit the age of military enlistment and are currently inactive due to this). The album chosen is Solo Day, which was released in 2014 (July 14th, 2014 to be exact). It featured the title track of the same name and 5 other songs (two of which are standout tracks, in my opinion). To see what they are, scroll down below.
1. Solo Day (Title Track) – Click here to read the full review for Solo Day. (9/10)
2. You Make Me A Fool ( 내가 뭐가돼) – What really stood out to me in 2014 and what still stands out to me today with You Make A Fool (hereafter Fool) is the casual vibes. The lighthearted nature of the guitar strumming and refreshing tone that their vocals and rapping bring to the song really make it a nice sound. It is easy on the ears and I liked how they managed to get everything mould over the simple instrumentation that the song has. Fool is one of the many examples of Jinyoung’s songs that has blown me away. (10/10)
3. Are You Happy (With Him)? (잘돼가) – I liked the R&B and hip-hop infused side of this song. I think, at the time of release, B1A4 was known for more of their pop sound and energetic pieces. This is a mature side of B1A4 that sounded really good. Baro was extremely well highlighted in this song. His rapping really worked extremely well with the song, which featured a ‘golden’ instrumental feel. The other members do a good job as well, complimenting the song as well. There was good melodies and textures when it came to the singing. But Baro still managed to shine over the top. (8/10)
4. A Glass Of Water (물한잔) – This is one of the non-title tracks that I really enjoyed back when it was released. A Glass Of Water also made it onto a potential 5 Favourites post. But I cut the segment before even publishing that particular post. If I remember correctly, the song was meant to be A Glass of Soju. But as their fans were underage, it was changed to Water. It is another Summertime song that feels refreshing every time you listen to it. It is lighthearted and very B1A4-like (when it was released). The vocal and rapping was ideal and the instrumental really made it attractive to the ears. The hooks were also addictive, as well. (9/10)
5. Drive – I think out of the songs on the album, this one is most skippable. Drive does have a vibe that would suit a nice breezy drive. I liked the slightly bouncy nature of the instrumental. But it just didn’t feel different to song released by any other male group in the industry. It also didn’t peak and felt flat towards the end. The vocals did sound wholesome, while the rapping did help push the song along. But other than that, there isn’t much else to the song worth mentioning. (7/10)
6. You (ft, Sunmi) – You ends the album with a surprising feature from Sunmi, who at the time only became recently active again through the release of 24 Hours, which pushed her back into the spotlight. It brings back B1A4’s mature sound and the group pairs well with Sunmi’s husky vocals. But when I listen to the song, I thought the two parties had a barrier that really prevented them from coming together neatly. There were good harmonies in the song, which I enjoyed. But I just thought they felt distinctly apart. (7.5/10)
Overall Album Rating – 8.4/10