[Album Review] Ride On The Wind (3rd Mini Album) – KARD

I usually publish my album reviews on Thursdays and Sundays. However, I am a day late due to the release of the Dream Catcher music video theories yesterday. Today’s album review will focus on KARD’s recent comeback and Ride On The Wind. The album cover, shown below, is probably my pick for one of many unappealing covers to do date. It looks so plain and the image of them looks like it was just pasted on it. But we are not here to talk about the album cover but rather the songs on the album. So let’s get going! (Per usual, I have left off their Humming introductory track).

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Ride On The Wind Album Cover

2. Moonlight – What this song does nicely show a fair amount of contrast between the female and male members of the group. Jiwoo and Somin have higher pitch vocal parts which pair well with the usual deep tone of BM and J.Seph. I like how it is very easy on the ears as the song relies on a softer instrumental, compared to their past releases. I have to admit the song does lack something, which I cannot determine the nature of. I feel like with an additional element, the song could have been kicked up a notch. Also, I felt the song was repetitive but it wasn’t too bad. (8/10)

3. Ride On The Wind (Title Track)Click here to read the full review of Ride On The Wind. (8/10)

4. Knocking on Heaven’s Door – Like the first song, Somin and Jiwoo had their parts at a higher than normal pitch and the male members had their usual rap. What is different, however, is the amount of energy that comes from this track. It makes the song so much more comfortable. Not saying that the first song was uncomfortable but the feeling is so much more present here. What also draws my attention (and possibly everyone else’s) to the song is the autotuned ‘Knocking on Heaven’s Door’ line just before the chorus. I thought it was rather cool and makes the song quite addictive. I also liked how the ladies added their own twist to that same line at the end of the song, which gave us a little something different at the end. (9/10)

5. Dimelo –  Dimelo means ‘Tell Me’ in Spanish. And it is a good song overall. However, it was very typical for the most part. And it would have remained typical if it didn’t include that really uncomfortable high pitch synth which can be heard during the post-chorus/second verse rap. The vocals and raps were decent. Just that one synth could have been forgone. Besides that, there isn’t much else to talk about. (7/10)

Overall Album Rating – 8/10

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Ride On The Wind Teaser Images
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[Review] Ride On The Wind – KARD

They are back! KARD is a co-ed group that debuted last year with a range of tropical house based songs such as Hola Hola and You In Me. And now they have returned with Ride On The Wind, which shows a different side of the same genre. Ride On The Wind is the title track of their 3rd mini-album, which shares the same title.

Like the title of the song, the verses very soft similar to a nice breeze that makes some Summer days much cooler. While this softness may be seen as a weak moment for some people, I think it makes the song very practical and actually quite unique. The tropical house instrumental was very typical, which I am a little disappointed with. However, I did like the little burst of energy once the post-chorus instrumental dropped. Jiwoo and Somin do a pretty good job with their sections, with Jiwoo also returning with some rapping, which did have some Hola Hola vibes. On the other hand, the male members (who have stayed strictly to rapping in their previous songs), each did a combination of vocals and rapping in this song, which I think is pretty cool. I think my other issue with the song was that it went by too quick and I would have gladly enjoyed another half minute of the song.

The music video follows the long line of KPOP videos that seem to focus on the scenery. It becomes a little awkward when you learn that they performed on grass fields littered with cattle poop, which is definitely interesting. But these types of videos are fast becoming unoriginal and dry, which doesn’t make it that memorable. There was also a focus on the members, allowing fans to see their favourite member up close. My favourite scenes throughout the entire music video were the choreography shots on the beach.

The choreography was quite good for this comeback. Though some of their moves from past comebacks are becoming recycled and this will cause the appeal to be lost a little too quickly in subsequent comebacks.

Song – 8/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 7.5/10
Overall Rating – 7.6/10

2017 KPOPREVIEWED Awards – Results

**drum rolls please**

It is time to announce the winners of the 2017 KPOPREVIEWED Awards. This is the first year ever that you (the readers) got the opportunity to vote and pick out the winners of each category (excluding a few). Let me just start by saying thank you for all those who participated in the voting process, as you all made this possible.

This will be an EXTREMELY LONG post and it will be gif heavy so it may take a while to load up. If you have a slow internet connection (like me), you can still view the winners (along with the nominees if you missed the voting period/want a reminder) by clicking the link here.

The respective gifs for each category represent the winners which you voted for, while I have put down my pick for the category. I have opted to not do a commentary this year due to the already long length of this post.

BEST MALE GROUP DEBUT

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Wanna One

Author’s Choice – Wanna One


BEST FEMALE GROUP DEBUT

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Dream Catcher

Author’s Choice – Dream Catcher


BEST SOLOIST DEBUT

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Kim Chungha

Author’s Choice – Jung Sewoon


RISING STAR

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Monsta X

Author’s Choice – NU’EST W


BEST SUBUNIT

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SEVENTEEN Performance Unit

Author’s Choice – Gugudan 5959


BEST CO-ED GROUP

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KARD

Author’s Choice – KARD


BEST MALE SOLOIST

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G-Dragon (Big Bang)

Author’s Choice – Bobby (iKON)


BEST FEMALE SOLOIST

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IU
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Sunmi

Author’s Choice – Sunmi


BEST VOCALS

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BTOB

Author’s Choice – DAY6


BEST RAPPER

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Zico (Block B)

Author’s Choice – Bobby (iKON)


BEST JAPANESE SONG BY A KOREAN ARTIST

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One More Time – TWICE

Author’s Choice – One More Time (TWICE)


BEST COLLABORATION

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Honey Bee – Luna, Solar, Hani

Author’s Choice – Bye Babe (Chen & 10CM)


BEST CHOREOGRAPHY

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Don’t Wanna Cry – SEVENTEEN

Author’s Choice – Gashina (Sunmi)


BEST MUSIC VIDEO

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Peek-A-Boo – Red Velvet

Author’s Choice – You In Me (KARD)


BEST MALE GROUP

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B.A.P
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EXO

Author’s Choice – SEVENTEEN


BEST FEMALE GROUP

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Red Velvet

Author’s Choice – Red Velvet


BEST NON-TITLE TRACK SONG

Beautiful – Pentagon


BEST ALBUM

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Palette – IU (4th Studio Album)

And there you have it, the 2017 KPOPREVIEWED Award Winners. Congratulations to all! Hopefully, the artist’s that you picked came out on top and were victorious.

As for the BEST SONG OF THE YEAR award, it will be published in a separate post. For this year, the winning song will be the song that tops the End Of Year Charts (to be published on the 15th of January).
NOTE: YOUR VOTES MAKE UP 50% OF THE END OF YEAR CHARTS, WITH THE OTHER 50% CONTRIBUTED BY ME.

[Album Review] You & Me (2nd Mini Album) – KARD

KARD is back with their most promising release yet. You & Me has managed to wow fans across the world and their entire second mini-album, You & Me, is replicating the same effect. The entire album is so good that I am putting it down as one of the best albums of 2017. More information on that in the coming weeks (winky face). But until then, her is my review of KARD’s latest album release.

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You & Me Album Cover

1..Into You – The best word I can find to describe this track is ‘epic’. From the dramatic piano start building up to the epic drop that started the chorus. The vocal work performed by Somin and Jiwoo were showcased, while the raps managed to create suspense in the track despite being slow. Regardless of the number of replays, this particular track felt amazing time and time again. (10/10)

2. Trust Me (J.Seph & Jiwoo) – The heavy drum beats that opened the song played throughout the entire song but were a great opening aspect of the track. I thought they were overpowering but it seemed to contrast nicely with the vocals and raps. The vocals were ‘mute’ in comparison but they had a definite haunting vibe. I love how the instrumental remained consistent until the rap came into play and changed up. Big ticks for intensity and leaving me at the edge of my seat. (10/10)

3. Push & Pull – The chorus for Push & Pull feels really catchy and could end up being really iconic. But I feel like the song could have had a more defined drop to make the song even better. The vocal work seemed slow but it ended up complimenting the instrumental. BM’s raps before the 1st and 2nd chorus were awesome. J.Seph’s part was pretty good but he needed something else to separate himself from BM’s raps and keep things from becoming too ordinary. (8/10)

4. Because (지니까) – I thought Because was an extremely powerful track. The vocals were haunting and the raps were, per usual, great. The overlapping of BM and Jiwoo at the end was quite cool. To me, that final part felt like a robot powering down because its battery was flat. It makes sense because the song is in regards to unhappy lovers in a relationship and that effect felt like it symbolises the end of the relationship. (9/10)

5. You In Me (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for You In Me. (9.5/10)

6. Trust Me (BM & Somin) – Compared to the previous version of Trust Me, this track felt slower and more like a RnB track. BM’s raps in this song were captivating and left me speechless the first time around I heard the song. Somin’s vocals were superb and highlighted well in this track. I also enjoyed the ‘Trust Me’ drop that occurred mid-way in the track. (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 9.25/10

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Member Teaser Images for You & Me

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[Review] You In Me – KARD

KARD has officially returned with their first comeback!!! Though, it feels like their 4th one. They previously made their debut with Hola Hola but hyped fans up with 3 pre-debut singles. Now, they are back with You In Me, which is the title for both their lead track and mini-album.

To me, You In Me keeps to the typical KARD sound that we have been hearing in their many past releases. But it also feels different. It takes on the tropical house sound, but You In Me showcases a more mature and powerful sound. The main difference is the intensity that features heavily throughout You In Me. We are literally thrown into J.Seph’s rap sequence, which completely caught me off guard. I thought the chorus was pretty cool, especially how they changed it up with the more dramatic sounds the second time we heard the chorus, giving us some more variety in the song. The thumping during the chorus just kept my tapping my foot the entire time. Somin and Jiwoo’s vocal work in the song is spectacular, usually during the verses. I just felt that BM’s part could have been a little more intense and powerful. It was good but compared to the rest of the song, it was quite lacking. Overall, the track does not disappoint and it might become my best personal favourite KARD song to date.

It seems like KPOP missed Halloween this year. But I am not complaining. The concept of this video is amazing. They are staying at the APEGO motel, which is Spanish for ‘attachment’. And it was quite clear that the girls in the video have some very serious attachment issues. Essentially, the video opens up as they are spending some time as with their respective lovers. But the video takes a dramatic turn when it is revealed that the male members had been dead for some time (my assumption is that the girls killed them) and that the girls stayed with the bodies. You can see J.Seph dead at the dinner table, while Somin is shaving a dead BM in the bathtub. I also liked how the sounds for that exact moment where it turns creepy are included in the song, which gave it the most ideal way to move the story along. I thought the idea was excellent the video turned out amazing.

The choreography was amazing. Once again, they have that key dance choreography that they released ahead of their comeback. It looked quite cool but I felt that all the other moves around the ‘key dance’ were much more epic and better. I also liked their formations and how they got into their formations.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 10/10
Performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 9.5/10

 

[Album Review] Hola Hola (1st Mini Album) – KARD

KARD has returned with their debut mini album. While they have been around for over 6 months now, the group didn’t make their official debut until last week, with Hola Hola. All the singles they have released before hand are also featured on the mini-album. To be honest, this album review should have been completed earlier. But due to a lovely thing called procrastination, I have been putting it off. But here it is, a week after their debut!

Please also note that starting 31st of July, I will be posting 1 album review each week on Monday.

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Hola Hola Album Cover

1..Oh Na Na (Pre-release Track 1)Click here for the full review of Oh Na Na (8/10)

2. Don’t Recall (Pre-release Track 2) – Click here for the full review of Don’t Recall (8/10)

3. Rumour (Pre-release Track 3)Click here for the full review of Rumour (7.5/10)

4. Hola Hola (Title Track)Click here for the full review of Hola Hola (9/10)

5. I Won’t Stop (나는 멈추지 않는다) – While I did expect some of KARD’s other tracks on the album to be EDM based, I did not expect that slow start. That provided a nice contrast between the two styles. The dubstep (?) chorus is really intense and while I thought the drop could have been a bit better, it did sneak up on me. But minus the chorus or the instrumental, the rest of the song didn’t seem memorable, which is a pity, given their previous tracks. (7/10)

6. Living Good (Special Thanks To) – I am not a big fan of hip-hop (can you say it is hip-hop, I am not sure) but I can’t help but get into the groove for the first part of the song. While it is a fan-service song, it is a little different, in the sense that the sound is a lot lighter, compared to the songs above in the album. The second part is a recording from a concert or something, which I thought was an interesting way to present a fan-song. (8/10)

Overall Album Rating – 8/10

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Hola Hola Teaser Image