[Review] SEE SEA – Hyolyn

It was expected that we would see Hyolyn back on stage during the season of Summer, given how her former group had a really grand reputation for Summer releases and how Summer will be able to give her the opportunity to show off some of her sexiness. She returns with See Sea, which was released mid-July. Hyolyn ends her three singles project with this release (the other two singles were To Do List and Dally).

See Sea is another Summer song released that really grabbed my attention (just don’t ask me why it took me a number of weeks to actually write the review). To me, I don’t think this falls into the broad genre of KPOP. Instead, I personally think the sound falls neatly into the Western market. There is something about it that makes it feel very distinct and refreshing from the usual Summer songs that we get. I am not too sure about what that ‘something’ is but whatever it is, it is doing its job. I really like the chorus, which was quite addictive. The way she sang her lines during the chorus left an impression on me. It was quite melodic but that was delivered through her vocals rather than the instrumental (which was borderline typical for me). The pre-chorus/buildup was awesome as well. Overall, I like the song quite a bit.

The music video was very typical for a Summer release. There was a lot of focus on Hyolyn, who showed a fair bit of skin in this music video (but I am not complaining!). There were also some nice shots of scenery (with Hyolyn) in them which felt very urban. Correct me if I am wrong but it seems like Hyolyn filmed this video somewhere in the US (most likely LA or Hawaii). The video does a good job of reflecting Summer but I am sure she could have avoided the typical route.

The performance was quite captivating. It isn’t an overtly sexual performance, which Dally touched upon. Instead, the performance was quite smooth and I liked the tone down touch fo sexiness. Her use of Western backup dancers confirms the Western influence on the comeback, which I don’t mind.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 10/10
Overall Rating – 8.6/10

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Tribute To Sistar #ThankYouSistar

Many groups are sadly leaving and disbanding. It will obviously never be the same without these groups. I previously did goodbye posts for some of the bands disbanding. However, I am quite unhappy with them and have decided to redo them. It will take time but you can expect them soon. Essentially, I have decided on a short reflection and then will rank all their title tracks in order of preference, along with some non-title tracks.

But enough with other groups. This post is about Sistar and their amazing 7 year run! The girl group comes from Starship Entertainment and made their official debut in 2009 with Shady Girl. Throughout the seven years, the group became known for their Summer time comebacks, with many fans saying Summer is incomplete without a Sistar comeback. To know that in the future, we will never see a Summer comeback from the 4 girls (Bora, Hyorin, Soyu and Dasom) ever again, it does dampen your day quite a bit. Personally, I am a fan of the group for their bright and catchy songs. But I also love their more sexy and femme fatale sound, as well. While I don’t enjoy their earlier stuff, Sistar has come a long way with their music. As individuals as well, their solo careers have become very big topics. We all know Hyorin’s capabilities as a soloist, Soyu with her collaborations and Dasom and Bora for their acting careers. So its safe to say that while Sistar is breaking up (:() , we can still see each member doing their own thing in the future!

We can’t talk about Sistar’s career without talking about their amazing discography. 2 full-length albums, 4 mini albums, multiple singles and multiple collaborations. Talking about albums, I always wanted to do an album review for Sistar. And since I started doing them this year, I was awaiting a comeback from the girls. But now, I guess I need to spend sometime and revisit some old albums.

Below are my TOP 10 songs from SISTAR alone! It’s not influenced by any reviews or any other person. Just my honest and biased opinion!

  1. Give It To Me (2013)
  2. Shake It (2015)
  3. How Dare You (2010)
  4. I Like That (2016)
  5. Loving You (2012)
  6. I Swear (2014)
  7. Alone (2012)
  8. Touch My Body (2014)
  9. So Cool (2011)
  10. Push Push (2010)

There are many other songs that I liked from the girls that were not promoted in anyway. They include (in no particular order):

  • Crying (released in 2013, as part of their second album, Give It To Me)
  • Lead Me (released in 2012, as part of their first mini album, Alone)
  • String (released in 2016, as part of their fourth mini album, Insane Love)
  • Holiday (released in 2012, as part of their Summer special album, Loving U)
  • Ok Go! (released in 2014, as part of their second mini album, Touch N Move)

Within Sistar, they have a subunit named Sistar19, which features Hyorin and Bora. While the future of this subunit is unclear, I had to mention them and their songs:

And that’s all for this short and probably badly written tribute. As I mentioned previously, I am a fan of Sistar and it doesn’t sit right with me that I am not making some sort of tribute for the girls. I always enjoy listening to them. Every now and then, I spend some time out of my day and have a Sistar listening session. Why? Because their songs are too good! I wish the girls the best for all their future endeavours.

I will shortly be posting a review for their final single as a group. And I will be looking forward to their upcoming final stages together. But in the meantime, do check out that final song, Lonely, which was released today!

#ThankYouSistar

[Review] Paradise – Hyorin (Sistar)

It has been 3 years since the release of Hyorin’s solo debut album, where she promoted One Way Love. After 3 years, she has returned with a brand new mini-album, It’s Me, which features the main title track, Paradise. Along with Paradise, she released 2 pre-releases: Love Like This (featuring DOK2) and One Step (featuring Jay Park). She also collaborated with Jooheon from Monsta X on another track on the album.

I find the track quite underwhelming. It isn’t terrible. It may sound stupid, but since Hyorin has amazing vocals, I am still waiting for that one track that blows us all away. This track, plus her previous solo track have not done that yet, and that disappoints me. Out of all the songs that I say the singers are holding back, this song probably will top that list. Some parts sound good with her voice, but she needed to do a little more towards the end. Capping the song with more ad-libs (but not overdoing it) could have made the track a little better. What we have here is good, but sounds limited and tame. Honestly, the song, despite being catchy, felt dull and repetitive. The Latin-inspired instrumental remained the same throughout (minus the dance break) and that dulled the song quite a bit. The producers managed to change it up quite nicely at the bridge with the beat drop (which was quite unexpected, but I like it) but they just went back to original beat straight away and that didn’t captivate me or give it that wow factor. Also the “Yeah, I’m different, Uh, huh, my temperature is different” (during the chorus) sounds forced and quite uncomfortable. Overall, disappointed with the track.

The music video was okay. There wasn’t much to it, besides Hyorin being sexy and dancing. Some of the sets look amazing. I know I have said that I dislike the projections that appear in the video in the past. But the projections here were pretty good. That sets plus a few others gave the video a very nice elegant and classy feel. Some of the other sets, like the shower one, were hideous in my eyes. And they didn’t show a classy or elegant side. I have to agree with a few comments on YouTube, but the stylist this time didn’t do a good job. As I said in the past, I have a hideous fashion sense, but even some things in the video have me going ‘huh?’.

The choreography looks boring and uninventive. There is also a very uncomfortable look that she has while performing the song. I don’t know if she is uncomfortable with singing the song, dancing to it or performing just by herself after so long, but that did affect the performance for me.

Rating – 4.5/10

 

Shake It – Sistar

Sistar has returned. The digital queens are officially dropped their new mini album back in June with Shake Their last comeback was around a year ago with I Swear and Touch My Body.

I don’t know why some people are always having a go at Sistar when they do these Summer concepts.  Actually it is girl groups in general. And I think their perspective on the summer and sexy concept clouds their enjoyment and distract them from the song. I honestly thought this was an amazing song. The song totally feels like a summer song and does a much better job at it than what Touch My Body does. It is really addictive and super catchy. In other words, it is currently my jam and my go to song at this very moment. The lines were more evenly distributed this time around, which makes me happy. I just enjoyed the song and really did not felt that the song was lacking in any area whatsoever.

This video was creepy. Yeah, feel sorry for that Noel guy. He is popular, but does he have to play the creepy roles in all music videos. First BESTie’s Excuse Me and now this Sistar video. As for the teacher, he looks very scary. I like the little comic bubbles that pop up at certain times of the video. I thought they added a nice touch to the video and actually added to the comical feel of the video for me. I was surprised with the lack of butt close-ups. I expected a lot more, but the video only had 20% ass. I have to say, Sistar has really nice bodies. They looked very hot and sexy in this video. Which means the video did its job correctly. Finally, Soyu’s boobs. I think I covered the main bits… Yeah… That was meant to be a terrible pun, somewhat relevant to the video.

As for the dance, there is a lot of butt shaking. But yeah, the song repetitively says “Shake It”. What else can they shake? Honestly, if they were shaking their head, arms or legs, the video would receive no attention. The ass and boobs (but there wasn’t any of the latter) did their job in the video. So essentially to those attacking Sistar for their concepts, you should really start seeing what actually works in the world and what doesn’t. But I am 100% that they did not overdo it in this dance and I am personally thankful for that. That or I be replaying the music video  for quite some time.

Overall, I feel like this is one of their best comebacks in a long time. They honestly did a wonderful job. 9.5/10

Erase – Joo Young & Hyorin (Sistar)

Starship Entertainment, this year, has released various collaboration between their actual company and a smaller company that they own, known as Starship X. Such collaborations include Soyou and JungGiGo’s Some, Hyorin and Mad Clown’s Without You and now the newest member of the entertainment company’s family, Joo Young and Hyorin with Erase.

This song channels the RnB feels that we don’t really find usually in KPOP. Though, Starship X is more focused on the hip hop, I find this style to just be a normal RnB song that I grew up with. Before sex, money and drugs entered the American industry, this was the type of song that I grew up with and this is the type of songs that I am going to miss. Their vocals are really good. Their vocals seem to go hand in hand. I won’t say this song is catchy or addictive, but I enjoyed listening to it. However, there is this thing with the chorus that is making it get stuck in my head. The song talked about getting rid of memories of each other. Overall, I liked the song.

The music video is pretty interesting and actually has a pretty solid plot line to it. So the run down of this is: the two have broken up and have gone their separate ways. They try to erase memories so they can move on to another person and form a new relationship. Such as illustrated by the scene where Hyorin and the bartender flirt (or just share a laugh). However, the actual ex partner  turns up and sits on the opposite end, and both end up remembering the past. The second Hyorin comes in to represent the past and past Hyorin sits next to Joo Young. Then the video ends. That by far is really smart and really pulled me in. The darkness of the video also channels the RnB feels, but also the darkness of breaking up.

The dance is okay. Pretty “sexy” in Korean terms. Especially, the part where Hyorin starts to rub Joo Young’s thighs. And where she also rubs his lips.

Overall, this is a pretty good debut/comeback.  Of course it was a hit, because all of these collaborations within Starship are becoming widely popular and I guess we just have to wait to see which singers will be coming together for the next Starship collaboration. 8.1/10

 

Touch My Body – Sistar

Sistar has finally returned after a year and 2 months disappearance from promotions. Last time they were on stage, they were promoting Give It To Me, which was a very successful song for the girls. That was back in June 2013. Since then, Dasom has been acting in a show called Melody Of Love (which I actually watched and cringe when they get surprised), Hyorin released her first solo album, One Way Love back In November. Member Bora has been all over variety shows and also got herself an acting gig, being the host for the Music Bank show on Fridays. Lastly, member Soyu has been hitting the top of the charts with her hit song collaboration with JungGiGo for Some, which was a really successful song that was loved by everyone and also Mad Clown and Soyu’s Stupid In Love. As you can see, each member is very successful and quite busy. And that is basically the run down of the Sistar events that happened since Give It To Me. Now it is Touch My Body.

Touch My Body is not technically my cup of tea. It is an okay song, just it is really repetitive and that really drags out the song and makes it sound so boring to listen to. Touch My Body is like repeated 23675260 times or in other words, those three words dominated the song. It is catchy, just it is not as memorable as their other songs in the past. Though, I do somewhat like it for its Summer feel and the brightness of the song. Though, I would love it if it didn’t repeat “Touch My Body” excessive amounts of the time. I feel like their company and the song writers are finally listening to the fans who want more lines for the members. Dasom has been receiving more lines, though I think Soyu has much less. And I think more a longer rap is needed to make the song more even for Bora. Hyorin does not sound as great as before though, I think this song limits the girls ability. The instrumental sounds pretty good, with the saxophone like sound and modern beat to it.

The music video is quite boring to watch. I really love the bright colours, just really after watching it once for me, it felt so boring and artificial. You know what could have been better, if they went outside for this music video. It is a freaking Summer video for summer perfect for an outside video, not a artificial set that is made out of a thin layer of cardboard. There are a few things that I liked in the video and there are a few things that I just find really boring and uncreative. Let’s start with the latter. Disliked what they were wearing, when they dance that is. Like are they running out of stuff to wear in Korea? Secondly, the people who watch the video. Like seriously guys, calling this the sexy concept. Must I link you the girl group that is taking the sexy concept, dropping the y an calling it the sex concept? Thirdly, the little party scene. It looks so repetitive. We have see this loads of times in a lot of boy group’s video and quite a lot of times in videos for girl groups as well. But let’s move onto what I like. I diamond swing looks pretty cool. I would not mind getting on that swing. I cute speech bubbles that appears are an amazing addition to the video. And even though I despise of the set, I like the mini island they created for themselves.

The dance is kind of …, just not one that I would expect to win the award for best choreography. The chorus twerking within one second dance looks really bad and the dance they have right after the chorus is also quite bad. I have to be honest. A pretty bad dance and I will be the one raising questions if they win best dance performance again.

This song and comeback was not for me. I like Ok Go much more that this song to be honest. 2/10

Mad Clown ft. Hyorin (Sistar)

Source: http://modernseoul.files.wordpress.com/2014/04/mad-clown-without-you-jo-min-ho-hedgehog.jpg

Mad Clown, after his hit song Stupid In Love, has finally returned with a new song. Last time he enlisted the help of the Soyu from Sistar for his debut song, this time he asked for Hyorin from the same band. And the song seems to be very popular as it has won an award already making a song that will top charts. Also, I wish to say a few things about the recent ferry accident in South Korea. My thoughts and prayers are with those who have lost loved ones in this horrible incident and my thoughts and prayers goes out to those who are still missing. I am thankful that there were survivors and that they will fully heal from the scars that they have obtained from an accident that basically stopped the nation and the rest of the world. And to those ignorant KPOP fans and other people in the world, screw you. You are not a fan if you have not heart to care for the others.

This song is a pretty cool song. I really liked his debut single, Stupid In Love, mainly because you can tell the rap has been thought out properly and on top of that, he was really passionately. To me, this time he took the rapping down a notch to fit the emotional vocals of Hyorin and meaning of the song. His rapping has these really good rnb sound that I actually like. The rapping at the start does actually build up to the chorus, however I really like it how they drop the final seconds so the instrumental builds up the rest, letting the song flow much better. Another thing to talk about, Hyorin is not the main star of this song. She is getting no publicity for this song, whereas Soyu got a lot of love from Stupid In Love. Her vocals don’t get in the way of the rapping and sound pretty good. There is nothing to show Hyorin off, which is a good move by the management. Though the ending is where I am going to complain about and this only applies to the live performances. The rapping and vocals at the end sound pretty good, but it seems more like a hot mess to me. In the song, it is not there, however in the live performances it is, so I a little confused with it. But overall a pretty good song.

The music video is shot in a black and white monotone kind of setting. There is nothing flashy or loud in this music video, which places emphasis on the plot and vocals in the song. How I understood the music video may have been a little different to the rest of you guys. Mainly cause I am not that great at connecting various pieces of information together. But we have a couple, where the girl left. The guy feels like he is unable to live without the girl, so he decides to occupy with himself, which ended up failing. He looks into a mirror, he tries to draw something, but it all reminds him of his past. So he ended up breaking everything so he can forget everything, even the girl, who returns at the end of the video, to find a pretty trashed up placed and also that her boyfriend or ex boyfriend had left. Pretty good video I have to say. Plot was pretty solid and I think that the song fitted the feeling and level of emotion in the video.

Really good song and music video. 7.5/10

So Cool – Sistar

Source: http://karelworld.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/socool1.png

Sistar, one of the biggest girl groups at the moment, returned in 2011 with So Cool. Now they are known for big hits like Alone and Give It To Me, which sky-rocketed them to fame. Prior to this is that the girls made their comebacks with a few songs, such as Shady Girl, How Dare You, Push Push. They also before So Cool’s release unveiled Sistar19, which is a subunit of the band which consisted of members Hyorin and Bora. So Cool was not the first song that they won their awards with. They got their first music show award with How Dare You which rose to the top of the charts quite quickly. So Cool followed likewise as well, rising to the top of the charts as well.

Looking back, I really don’t know why I chose to review this song. I was not a major fan of them back in 2011, and this song was really boring for me. It was just a standard pop song for me, which was quite disappointing, because now they release top hits like Give It To Me and Alone. Another string of boring songs. Well, it is not that boring as I still tend to listen to it (It is on me exercise playlist for some reason) and I enjoy singing along to it, bur it really is not a song that I would say is high up there at all. The vocals are okay, not as great and the line distribution was much better than nowadays. The rapping was the only thing I liked in this song, since it really showed off Bora’s style and all I remember from the song is “So Cool like Ice Tea”. Hahahaha… So yeah… Not so much a great song. Its not bad, but not that great either.

The music video to me was boring, but I know a few people who thought this music video was amazing. I did not like the set as much as I wanted to, and those guys were a distraction. I thought they were Brave Brothers, but it turned out that Brave Brothers was a one man band. Anyway, I was not entirely sure about them running in puffy dresses, but at least they were wearing runners. Cause if they were not, wow. What would have had happened to them? I always think something and here we go. I don’t like how the white people are portrayed in music videos. With the exception of YG Ent, the white people always seem to be directors and people behind sets. On top of that, they always seem to be so fake and whatnot. But then again, probably revenge on how Asians are portrayed on the screen in America and other countries.

The dance is okay. The music video one was better, but was not as catchy as I thought it would be. On top of that, how did tail swishing become shoulder rubbing on face dance? I would love to see the thought progress of that one.

6/10. Honestly don’t know why I chose this song to review when I come to think about it. But hey, a review is a review. Not much has changed since 2011 I guess. Next review goes to: Fiction by Beast. Note: I will update a proper playlist tomorrow when I have time.

One Way Love – Sistar (Hyorin)

Source:http://okpopgirls.rebzombie.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Sistar-Hyorin-One-Way-Love-MV-teaser-2.jpg

Everyone knows about Sistar nowadays. And I think everyone knows Hyorin, the main vocalist of the group. She recently made her solo debut on the stage with One Way Love. She is the first member of the band to officially branch out into a solo career. I say officially, because both Soyu and Hyorin has had solo singing activities in the past. Anyway, this review will be very depressing mainly cause I have to talk about how misleading something is. She has achieved an amazing feat with winning awards this week, a week after her debut, showing the industry how powerful she and her group is and the love fans have for her.

This song is quite disappointing. I have to admit it. The teaser showcased a rock song for goodness sake, but instead we get this extra slow song which sounds like nothing compared to the teaser. Do you know how freaking disappointed I am with this??? Hyorin’s voice fits rock really well, not some crappy slow song. Everyone was expecting some kind of party song that would have showcased her vocals and dance skills. Though this comeback does showcase her dance skills, but her vocals are quite lacking. It seems like the producer thought “Oh well, let’s give her a high note at the end to make it sound like she is the main vocal.” No. Lonely was just as bad, maybe worse. But some good points. The chorus is downright catchy. I have it stuck in my head. Did not stay around my head for long, but it did get stuck there. Also, her rapping in this song is pretty cool. It added a great touch to the song, and it allowed the song to focus on her only, not some other rapper. I would not have minded Bora in this song, but I guess that song would be leaning towards Sistar19.

Writing this review basically means that I am watching the video for the first time. So here are my thoughts. The set where she dances with the back dancers look really cool.  She looks stunning, but I am not too sure about the tattoo on her stomach. I guess we see a couple with love and hate. Where Hyorin probably loves him, but he does not love her back, hence the name: One Way Love.  When she is rapping in the music video, she was smiling. I honestly think this song is made for smiling. Those scenes where she is giving him the death stare suits the song and video much more. I guess in the end they make up (and probably make out). I have two more complaints. Why she is she pouring champagne into a bathtub in the middle of the room?BATHTUB IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROOM? Geeezzz… I wonder where I saw that before. And also, that scene with her and the blue background. She looks funny there, not the best solo shot of her. Death stares FTW!!!

I find this dance really cool. She makes the dance look so easy, as if no effort is required. However, when we probably do that continuously then we probably die. She said it was like a thigh workout or something and I can see what she means. It is pretty amazing. To those who think it is a little too much? Yeah, right! If this dance gets band, then every other dance by a girl group will be banned for implied thoughts. But seriously amazing dance.

6.5/10. Disappointed with the comeback, but it still kind of works out in the end. I have to say, her interview on Thursday with that one fan who screamed out every time she spoke made her crack up before she finished her sentence. It was pretty funny.