[Review] When We Are Us – Super Junior KRY

Another Monday release that I need to review. I think there is one more after this one, but I will hold that for tomorrow. Today’s focus will be on Super Junior K.R.Y, which is a subunit of Super Junior’s main vocalists – Kyuhyun, Ryeowook and Yesung. The unit made its debut back in 2006 with The One I Love and we last saw the three promote as a unit in 2015 with the release of the Japanese single, Join Hands. On Monday, the unit made their grand return with When We Are Us and their first ever mini-album of the same name. It is said that this comeback is the start of the many Super Junior activities we will see this year as they celebrate 15 years in the Korean music industry.

As Super Junior K.R.Y is made of main vocalists, it makes the most sense for the unit to go with songs that focuses on their vocals. And as I have stated a lot recently, the most typical way to do this is through a ballad. With that statement, you can tell that When We Are Us is a ballad, singing about longing for a loved one. It feels and sounds like your typical ballad, with those swaying melodies that I always enjoy in ballads and a beautiful instrumental made of the classical piano and strings. Vocally, I don’t think it is worth pointing how breathtaking they sound (FYI, they do sound amazing, as one would expect). They have already showed us long time fans and listeners of KPOP their vocal abilities through Super Junior activities and more recently through their solo endeavours. As for which section caught my attention, I didn’t find anything that memorable to talk about as it is that typical ballad. But as the song progresses towards its peak in the bridge, the song got very interesting very quickly. Sadly, it was brief but that is what you expect from the peak of the song. Here, the soaring vocals are layered on top of each other, before ending with high note harmony with all three members. The ad-libs that follow, along with the final set of harmonies ties the song together nicely. Overall, it is still a nice ballad. Just very typical in a nutshell.

I think I have mentioned this before. But Super Junior is such a senior group that they are well respected by fans and other artists that come after them. And with that mentality that their fans will continue to support them nonetheless, the music video can be dry as a bone. This is what we are experiencing here. Aside from some artsy shots with TVs positioned around them, the sets were incredibly lackluster. While I assume the swimming pool set was meant to offset the darker scenes of the member’s closeup shots and go hand-in-hand with their lyrics (i.e. references to the colour blue and Summer), I can’t help but note how empty it felt. I am not expecting flashing lights and club scenes to fill up the space, but there are many successful ballad music videos with a lot more substance within them.

Song – 7/10
Music Video – 6/10
Overall Rating – 6.6/10

[Album Review] Timeless (9th Repackaged Album) – Super Junior

Super Junior made their comeback last week with 2YA2YAO!, which is the title track from their recent album, Timeless. For those who don’t know, this is their group’s 9th repackaged album, which was formerly titled Time_Slip. Through Time_Slip and Timeless, the group has showed us two polar sides of themselves. SUPER Clap (the title track from Time_Slip) was a much more energetic and colourful song. 2YA2YAO! is a lot darker and more serious. It will be interesting to see how the rest of the repackaged album (new songs only!) will play out.

Timeless Album Cover

1. 2YA2YAO! (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for 2YA2YAO! (9/10)

3. Ticky Tocky (악몽) – Don’t let the title trick you. I thought Ticky Tocky would be this obnoxiously bright track and would totally hate it. But it was definitely the opposite. Ticky Tocky is a hip-hop based dance track that is very serious. There is a level of edginess to the song that pretty much appealed to my tastes right away. There are some parts of the song that I do place a question mark over, namely the bridge once again. It just brought too much of a pop vibe to the song which I don’t think this subtly intense song needed. The rest of the song was awesome, with really smooth vocals and nice rapping to compliment the hip-hop sound. (8/10)

4. Shadow (赤霞) – Probably the most modern sounding song on the album. The song has this funky sound to it that makes this song sound so awesome. Rather than settling for that hip-hop sound that the other three tracks in this album review have opted for, the song incorporates a bit of that sound through a dance electronica beat. The bass to this song is perfection and the chorus is really addictive. The vocals, once again, is very smooth for a song of this style. But what really caught my attention is the rapping. It is one of their best efforts yet. The rap sequence, at the end, was my favourite bit and I loved the energy that flowed from this part. (10/10)

12. Rock Your Body Rock Your Body opts for a heavy hip-hop sound on top of the dance genre that the song had going, fitting right in with the rest of the repackaged album. You will notice that only four members performed this track (Yesung, Eunhyuk, Donghae, Ryeowook). The chorus had this anthem-like vibe to it, which helped bolden the song in my point of view. Yesung, Ryeowook and Donghae handled the vocal department really well in this song, helping the song achieve an epic feel. The rapping, handled by Eunhyuk, was pretty good as well. (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 9/10

Timeless Teaser Image

[Review] 2YA2YAO! – Super Junior

As the Lunar New Year has passed, you an expect an influx of comebacks this week from some of your favourite artists. Super Junior kicks us off this week with the release of 2YA2YAO! This is the group’s title track for the repackaged album of Time_Slip, which has been renamed as Timeless. As the lineup for Super Junior tends to change between comebacks (though this shouldn’t happen anymore as all the members have passed the mandatory enlistment stage of their careers), I just wanted to clarify that this comeback features the same nine members who participated in Super CLAP and the Time_Slip album. But on with the review!

Pronounced as Il-Ow-Il-Ya-Oh, 2YA2YAO! takes on a completely different profile to their previous title track. This new song is a lot more intense and edgy, as opposed to the bright and pop nature of SUPER Clap. To me, this would be Super Junior’s answer to the more intense comebacks that we have heard in this era of KPOP and definitely a return to their more powerful sounds that they had going when they were at the peak of their careers. And I thought it was a really awesome song. The instrumental felt like it took a page of the 90s and I honestly liked how deep it sounded. I think this was largely the reason to why I really enjoyed the song. The vocal work helped support this. The rapping was good but it felt a little plain. The part that did get the biggest question mark is trap-focused bridge of the song. It started off good, matching with the rest of the song. But then the melody become a little too mainstream pop, which didn’t feel like it was fitting for the otherwise cool track.

Based from the top of my mind, this comeback features one of their edgiest videos yet. I think the last time I got this type of feeling from a Super Junior music video was Bonamana. While I do like this type of concept, I have to admit that it is a little typical. Aside from showing the members in a dark setting and charismatic light (which does match the song’s vibes), there just wasn’t really anything worth talking about.

The music video did feature the standard choreography shots and I thought that these were a better element of the music video. You could feel the edge when watching the choreography shots. My favourite bit has to be short instrumental segments we get following each chorus. I thought the section looked really cool and it was like they were tutting with their entire bodies.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 8.2/10

[Review] Orgel – Sungmin (Super Junior)

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Super Junior was active this year through the release of Time_Slip, SUPER Clap and I Think I. However, Sungmin did not participate in this year’s comeback. In fact, Sungmin has been an inactive member of the group since 2015, after fans demanded for his departure from the group due to his marriage. However, on the 22nd of November, Sungmin made his official solo debut with Orgel. This is Sungmin’s first solo track since the release of Day Dream in 2018 as part of SM Station.

Sungmin, while still active as a member of Super Junior, held the role of lead vocalist. And as cliche as it is (for a lead or main vocalist), Sungmin’s official debut song comes in the form of a ballad. Unfortunately, the cliche release doesn’t really offer anything new and felt like a typical ballad that we hear often at this time of the year. I have listened to Orgel a number of times since its release a month ago, but the song has sadly not stuck with me. It was often forgotten and I haven’t gone out my way to actually seeking the track to listen to it. Paired with a simple yet warming instrumentation featuring piano and acoustic guitar (made to sound like a music box, which I think was the intention based on the title of the song), we are given an opportunity to hear Sungmin’s vocals once again. He sounds nice, with a raspy voice and showcases falsettos during the chorus. And this does a lot to make the song feel appealing. But I don’t think that is enough to make the ballad a stand out. I do like ballads, but this one just felt standard to me.

Orgel, in Korean, means music box. And as mentioned in the song section of the review, the music does give off a music box vibe. In addition to that, something that I felt while watching the music video is that the song ended reminding me of the nice feeling when the sun manages to shine through the blinds in the morning and you wake up as a result. And we do get some of that through the natural lighting present in the music video, as Sungmin walks around the neighborhood. The music box that is shaped like a carousel is what he uses as inspiration for this song and the music that he writes in the video. And it seems like the mentioned music box also reminds me of his childhood, getting him to flip through that book with the cute drawings. Overall, I thought it was a nice video, going hand-in-hand with the song.

Song – 5.5/10
Music Video – 7/10
Overall Rating – 6.1/10

[Album Review] Time_Slip (9th Studio Album) – Super Junior

For today’s album review, we will be having a closer look at Super Junior latest album release, Time_Slip. It is their 9th studio album and features the title track, SUPER Clap and I Think I (links below). It is also their first album release with all members officially out of the military (even though there are some inactive members due to varying reasons). It is definitely interesting how their album is like. After all, they have 14 years of experience and have outlived many groups over the years.

Time_Slip Album Cover

1. The Crown – Prior to the release of I Think I, Super Junior dropped the lyric video to The Crown, which makes this the first track onto be revealed from the album. There is a cool and epic feel that comes from this track. It almost feels like an OST to an adventurous movie, which I quite enjoyed. It also serves as a very bold start to the album and reintroduction to the group (which seems to be the meaning behind the song). Impressive vocals and rapping are also included in this track. (9/10)

2. SUPER Clap (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for SUPER Clap. (9/10)

3. I Think I (Pre-Release Track)Click here to read the full review for I Think I. (9/10)

4. Game – The instrumental for Game keeps me on edge throughout its entire run. Paired with the vocals, it makes for a vibrant track. The instrumental also gives it a bold feel and some of the comments I made regarding the initial song can be applied here. I also like how the track keeps busy and consistent, especially towards the end. And I like that. I also really like the upbeat energy that Game has, which really helps it make it memorable for me. (8/10)

5. Somebody NewSomebody New is a pop ballad that brings out the vocals of the members, particularly the vocal line of the group. They seemed to go above and beyond with the song, leaving the other members behind. But that is only a minor flaw with the song. There is a bit of rapping in this song, which makes the song feel very KPOP-like. Apart from that, the song has a pleasant melody and a calming, yet simple instrumental. (8/10)

6. SkydiveSkydive presents us with a really cool title. And while the song had a decent drop and overall feel, I feel like Skydive could have been ditched the pop feel and went with an EDM instrumental that was more hard-hitting. Not only would this be awesome, but it would also really help Super Junior appeal to the younger audience. While they attempted this by incorporating that intense trap bridge, it didn’t last long enough nor did it really cause much of an impact. (7/10)

7. Heads Up – I like Heads Up but it could have really committed to the sleek feel a lot more. It was getting there but it didn’t satisfy me like the other sleek songs currently out there in the industry. Maybe if the guys were a little more sensual with their lines, it could have delivered this aspect. On another note, I really liked how the verses and chorus contrasted. The verses were ‘almost’ whisper-like, which the chorus had a definite pop to it, which made the song appealing and catchy for me. (8/10)

8. Stay With MeStay With Me is probably the most typical sounding on this track. I just don’t find anything that interesting when it comes to this song. The melody and vocal work come off as pretty bland for me. I did enjoy the rap sequence, which is the opposite of what I usually say when it comes to Super Junior tracks. I am a little wary of this song thanks to the ‘Stay Stay Stay’ repetition. It sounds good now, but I am not too sure after multiple replays of the song. (6/10)

9. No DramaNo Drama is performed by Leeteuk, Yesung, Eunhyuk, Ryeowook and Kyuhyun. It isn’t too bad of a song. There is a good acoustic touch to the instrumental. But it feels like there seems to be a lot going on this song that didn’t seem necessary, especially in the chorus. In addition to that, I got the impression that the members were really tired in this track. The track came off as low energy and this had a definite effect on my impression of the song. (6/10)

10. Show – Ending the album is Show, a song that thanks the fans for being with them for the past fourteen years. I like how they didn’t opt for the heartfelt emotional ballad. Instead, Show is a remake of Kim Won Joon’s Show (which was released back in 1996) and it takes the form of an upbeat and vibrant track that summarises their emotions towards their fans. The way they present song reminds me of their earlier days as well. I also liked how they incorporated their messages to fans within the song mid-way, which helps make the remake song extra special for them and fans alike. (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 7.9/10

Time_Slip Teaser Image

[Review] SUPER Clap – Super Junior

Super Junior made their return on Monday with their ninth full-length album, Time_Slip. But due to the unfortunate news of Sulli’s passing, Super Junior delayed the release of their comeback music video for SUPER Clap until today. Usually, I wait for the release of the music video to write a review, hence this is why we are reviewing the song 5 days after its release. This is Super Junior’s first comeback in 7 years since the return of all members from military enlistment. Unfortunately, it is not a full team comeback, with Heechul sitting out due to health issues, Sungmin being an inactive member and Kangin departing from the group earlier this year.

Over the last few years, Super Junior’s releases have been heavily dominated by the Latin genre. Even this album’s pre-release track, I Think I, had some of that influence. So, it is interesting to hear that a ‘different’ sound from the group. I put ‘different’ in quotation marks because it fits in with releases from other artists from a more recent timeframe. SUPER Clap finds itself situated on the KPOP spectrum (the dubstep instrumental break says it all). I find the song to be quite catchy and groovy, thanks to the heavy bass and the brass incorporated instrumentation. I also got an impression that the song was a lot smoother and polished, which is something I don’t really recall Super Junior doing back in the day when I first started listening to KPOP. This polished and smooth feel is something that felt more recent than opposed to the past KPOP hits. I liked their vocals, rapping and the beat, which all made the song enjoyable. I also liked how the clapping was incorporated. I thought it could have been overused or obnoxious, but they had a good balance.

The music video was plain. I just didn’t find it as interesting as it could have been. I think since this was their first comeback as a full group, I expected something a little more celebratory. But that might have been just me, as not doing something celebratory would have meant they jumped right back into their normal routine. It was colourful but it lacked meeting the same level of energy as the song had.

I think the most interesting thing with Super Junior when it comes to their performance is whether their age would impact. And it felt like it does. Their moves don’t seem to be as strong as before. While the song was a lot more upbeat, the dance moves felt like they were more constricted and slower. This was quite apparent during their dance break. They did well, nonetheless, as the performance still looks good.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 6/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 7.9/10

[Review] I Think I – Super Junior

I know I have been going on about the reviews being very spread out. But since I have ‘a bit of spare time’ on my hands, it is time to tackle another debut. Super Junior returned on Saturday morning with I Think I, which I believe is not the official title track off their upcoming 9th album, which is due for release in a weeks time. A few milestones for their upcoming album which I will save for the actual title track’s review. In the meantime, let’s dive into the pre-release single for Time Slip.

I thought it was a nice song to ease you back into Super Junior’s appeal. It isn’t as heavy-handed like their title tracks have been in the past, especially their past few Latin-influenced title tracks. Interestingly,  I Think I still has that Latin influence. But it doesn’t so without feeling overwhelming, which instantly pushes up the appeal of the song. Dare I say that it actually feels refreshing and that it is nice to hear something from the same overused trend but redone in a manner that also feels quite different. I also find the song to be very smooth and melodic. I really like the repetition of the English lyrics throughout the song, along with the medium pace that the song’s instrumental features. I also like their use of brass. It was subtle throughout the song and they kicked it up a notch for the final chorus, which I think was fantastic. Together, the song comes off as memorable and definitely gets me excited for the official return of these KPOP legends.

The music video was interesting to watch. The video matches the song in terms of smoothness, where each scene slides into the next in some manner. Some members walk in and out of each scene, which keeps the video rolling in a different manner. I also applaud their use of different transitions, especially that curtain box that reminds me of the convey belts they use at X-ray machines in the airport. I also like the cool blue colour palette they used to set up the underground subway, which I think reflected well with the music. Overall, it is definitely a unique and smart video.

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

[Review] Pink Magic – Yesung (Super Junior)

One comeback that occurred last week was Yesung’s solo return to the music scene. However, I put the review on hold as I was hoping for a performance of some sort accompanying this comeback. However, it seems like Yesung does not plan on promoting Pink Magic and his third mini-album (which also shares the same name). So, here is the review for Pink Magic, exactly one week after its release! This is also Yesung’s first official Korean comeback since 2017 with Paper Umbrella and Hibernation.

The main reason to why I held onto Pink Magic’s review was because of its bright and slightly upbeat nature. I thought that there would be a nice routine featured in this comeback. It is unlike Yesung for a song of this style, mainly because we know him as one of the main vocalists of Super Junior (and main vocalists tend to take the ballad route with this solo promotions as proven time and time again). Even his previous Korean and Japanese releases have been of a ballad nature. But despite the style change to a retro 80s pop track, Yesung puts his husky and raspy vocals on display. I like how he goes on soft on some parts of the track, which goes to show that a rough textured voice can actually be delicate in nature if it is presented correctly. I personally don’t mind the track as it is quite pleasant and has this chilled sound to it. I also like its retro roots, which takes me back to a style that The song almost felt linear but that high pitch and  funky effect that was showcased as part of the bridge and post-chorus really cut that feeling down. Overall, a satisfying song.

Yesung, appropriately, dyed his hair the colour pink for this comeback. I also liked the video because it used a more pale approach with its colours, without the help of filters. I get the lighting helped out there. Also making cameos in the music video is Donghae and Kyuhyun (who recently was released from the military). Essentially the video shows Yesung being captivated by his crush, who he describes to be like the colour pink. It is also the only reason why he can see her because his eyes have the ability to only observe the colour pink (based on his eye test results). Don’t know if he should be driving then… Apart from the plot, there wasn’t much else interesting to comment on.

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

[Review] Danger – Super Junior D&E

Returning to the stage once again is Super Junior’s Donghae and Eunhyuk with their latest mini-album and the title track. Danger. It hasn’t been that long since we last saw them through their ‘Bout You promotions but that was 8 months ago, which can be considered to be a lengthy absence especially in the highly competitive industry of KPOP right now. But Super Junior doesn’t need to worry about this as they have a very loyal fanbase who will continually support them years to come! And I am sure the support extends to their subunits. So let’s have a closer look at Danger.

Danger is a song that boasts energy and edginess due to the nature of the instrumental. It takes on rock, trap and other forms of EDM in the song, creating an atmosphere that is best described as intense. The presence of the fast trap elements in the chorus gives it almost an ethnic vibe, which I think is rather interesting. But while intense is the right word, the song could have potentially benefited by extending this intensity by going a little more extreme with it. I think we are given a tiny taster to that potential at the end when it is built from suspense. But I would have liked it if it were gradual. Moving to more of the members, the rapping at the start was a pretty nice opener and sets up the song well. Donghae follows through with some vocals, which I think was also quite good. Sure, there isn’t anything mind-blowing in terms of technicalities and techniques. But they were rather captivating for a song like this. Overall, Danger is a pretty nice song to listen to.

I think the video matches extremely well with the vibes of the song. The edginess is taken on board in the video by going with its dark lighting and the possible participation in gang-like activities (though I don’t that is the exact words they would use to describe the video). Apart from that, I think the video has some great cinematography, especially the scenes where we can see them in a circle by looking up from underneath.  I thought it is quite cool.

Performance wise, it is really good. I think the biggest fear with Super Junior (and many senior groups) is that the choreography standards just continually become more intense. To the point where you don’t know if these senior groups will be able to keep up. But for the main dancers of Super Junior, they do a pretty damn good job. The chorus has t be my pick for the highlight of the entire choreography routine.

Song – 8/10
Music Video – 8.5/10
Performance – 8.5/10
Overall Rating – 8.3/10

[Double Review] Because I Love You + If You – Yesung (Super Junior)

Yesung finally makes his first return as a solo artist since his 2017 promotions of Hibernation and Paper Umbrella. But if you are expecting a return to the South Korean stage, then you have to come back next month as he will be returning then. In the meantime, Yesung recently releases his first solo album in Japan titled Story. The album features two title tracks (Because I Love You and If You) and both are connected via the music videos (hence why today’s review is a double review). Yesung also recently collaborated with Chungha for Whatcha Doin’ and Bumkey for Carpet.

I am not sure if I have ever reviewed any Japanese ballads before so this may be a foreign land for me. Both songs are of this nature and both are quite similar to the ballads we commonly get in Korea. For Because I Love You, we get a jazzy-like style instrumental which I thought was nice. Though I did think his raspy vocals were a little too soft towards the beginning and they were on the verge of being drowned out. The ending was a lot better as you can hear him pushing himself and this resulted in his voice standing out on top of the instrumental a lot better. If You takes on a typical approach with its ballad. A very nice but pleasant sounding instrumental made up of guitar and an orchestral touch. I really like his vocals here as they seemed clearer.  It also has a nice melody that gets me swaying along. The only flaw is that it feels too ordinary. I think if I were to pick one of the two, If You would be my clear winner.

Because I Love You starts off our story. Yesung is probably holidaying in a European country and passes by this lady who attracts his attention. She is in a rush, so he doesn’t get a chance to talk to her. Later, Yesung stops by a restaurant and the exact same lady from before is his waitress. He becomes nervous and distracted from his work and slowly begins imagining them dating. After his little daydream, he rips a page out of his diary and writes a message. He leaves it on the table and leaves. The waitress comes out, clearly interested in him and finds the note. This leads us onto the If You video. If You shows Yesung waiting around for someone, presumably the waitress. She is seen walking around holding the note that he left for her. Both of them visit different places that appeared in his daydream and both end up meeting each other at the same place where his daydream ended (at night by the river). She hands the note over, revealing to the audience that he wrote ‘Because I Love You’ on it and they both share a smile. I liked how both videos tied in with each other and allowed the story to really progress rather than jamming it one video and making it confusing.

Because I Love You
Song – 7/10
Music Video – 9/10
Overall Rating – 7.8/10

If You
Song – 8/10
Music Video – 9/10
Overall Rating – 8.4/10

[Review] Carpet – Yesung (Super Junior) & Bumkey

It is time for another SM Station release. Season 3 started a few weeks back, rounding out with NCT Dream’s Candle Light. There was an SM Station release last week due to (and I assumed this) it being the first week of the new year. But now, SM Station is back with a collaboration between Yesung and Bumkey. The song, Carpet, was released on Thursday of this week, which is the new designated day for all SM Station releases.

Carpet is an R&B ballad combo that endeavours the two genres that the collaborators are widely known for (Yesung commonly sings ballads, while Bumkey is an R&B rapper). Both do a splendid job within the song with nothing to say negatively. The harmonies are also quite beautiful. They also create a wonderful atmosphere that I think is best described as touching. I also noticed that there is a slight jazz infleunce, partly due to the piano, which could also be described as soothing. If you don’t understand the lyrics of the song straight off the bat (like a certain person – a.k.a. me), you can tell that there is an emotive drive to the song, which already sets the scene. But the music video (more on this later) and the title of the song got me rather intrigued, so I looked up the lyrics of the song. It seems the lyrics of the song are in the perspective of the small rug that has been through everything with someone, personifying it to be like a good friend to rely on and cry on – if needed.

And with the meaning of the song in hand, I think the video does an amazing job of visualising this message. The carpet has been with this young lady for many years. From her childhood, she played on it. From her adolescent, she read books on it. She also had breakups on it. But as she grew older, she moved away and the carpet was put into storage and somehow made it to the market. And during one of her shopping expeditions, the young female comes across the rug, which is instantly identified due to the presence of an orange juice stain that she caused back in her younger years, And to further fit the lyrics, we see the carpet wrapping itself around her to comfort her. A well put together music video.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 10/10
Overall Rating – 9.4/10

[Album Review] Drunk In Love (2nd Mini Album) – Ryeowook (Super Junior)

It is time for some more album reviews. Like last year, I will be reviewing the 2019 albums every Thursday and Sunday, while this year album reviews released on Tuesdays will be for the ‘older albums’. And kicking off the 2019 series is Ryeowook’s Drunk In Love. Intrigued by his opposing singles (see reviews below), I thought I check out the album. One of my many misconceptions regarding the singers who release ballads is that they only release ballads. But as you tell by my review coming up, this isn’t the case – which means I have a lot of albums to check out!

Drunk In Love Album Cover

1..I’m Not Over You (너에게) (Title Track)Click here to read the full review of I’m Not Over You. (10/10)

2. One and Only (우리의 거리) (Pre-Release Track)One and Only is one of the many songs on the album that do not fall into the typical ballad category. Instead, it takes on a mid-tempo pop vibe, which sounds quite good. The song is bright and very soothing. I like the way Ryeowook’s vocals glide over the instrumentation, contributing to that soothing factor. I really liked his harmonies with the backing vocals, which add depth to the song. I also liked that high pitched distortions, which added a quirky factor to the song. Overall, it is a nice track to listen to on a sunny day. (8/10)

3. Drunk In The Morning (취해) (Title Track)Click here to read the full review of Drunk In The Morning. (10/10)

4. Without YouWithout You is probably my most favourite track on this list. I liked everything about it. The pop instrumental (which has some orchestral mixes in it) really gives the song a nice burst of energy and it makes the song feel quite like a Western pop song. I also think his vocals in the song were smashing. They were really showcased in this song and go amazingly with the instrumental. I enjoyed the melody of the song, which made the song catchy. (10/10)

5. Something Good – Continuing on with the bright theme of the album is Something Good, which is another exceptional song. Once again, Ryeowook’s vocals are showcased throughout the song. But I think this song stands out for the sudden burst and change to the song through the chorus. And I liked how this is continued yet maintained throughout the rest of the track. It is a little in your face but it does work. It is also another catchy song and it does do ‘something good’ to the listener. (9.5/10)

6. Sugar – Given the title of the song, you can’t really direct a song titled ‘Sugar’ down an emotional route. Sugar goes for a fun sounding track that seems to have a subtle retro influence. The sweetness doesn’t really kick in until the young child begins singing. It gives the song a really cute touch and makes unique as it isn’t something that any KPOP idol has done thus far. I also thought Ryeowook’s ad-libs really ended the song on a very polished note. (9/10)

7. The 2nd Story (파란 별) – Ending the album is a ballad. I am not too sure about the context of this track as I can’t find anything under ‘The 1st Story’ that is associated with Ryeowook (I expected there to be a prequel). The song itself is a typical ballad. Not too emotional but not too boring. Ryeowook’s vocals are huskier in this song than any other song. I also like how peaceful the instrumental was, which was quite nice. (7/10)

Overall Album Rating – 9.1/10

Drunk In Love Teaser Image

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[Review] Drunk In The Morning – Ryeowook (Super Junior)

Earlier this week, Ryeowook made his solo comeback with I’m Not Over You, which he is promoting as the main title track for this latest album release, Drunk On Love. I am not sure about the nature of Drunk In The Morning (i.e. if it is another title track or just a secondary track /ut a music video for it was released today, resulting in the publication of this review.

Drunk In The Morning gives us one side of the spectrum of ballads. That strong power vocal and moving instrumental that I think is seen as the more traditional style of ballads. However, the instrumental is a little non-traditional, featuring a mixture of modern synths and an orchestra. But it does a wonderful job of showcasing that emotional picture. But it is the Ryeowook’s power vocals that give the song a painful touch, while also giving that level of impact that I seek in songs, which means the song is memorable. I’m Not Over You shows a ballad at the opposite end of the spectrum as it approaches the genre in a different manner. Given the nature of these two contrasting songs, I am genuinely interested in what the rest of his album will be like. Hence, I will write an album review for Drunk In Love to be published next week! You heard it first here!

I liked how this music video connected with Ryeowook’s music video for I’m Not Over You. Some of the sets are similar, particularly the one with the satellite dishes (in the other video) and the payphone (in this video). Even the same love interest is shown here (but with different feelings to match the song, of course). Something must have happened between videos to let it get to this state! I think Ryeowook’s acting in this video is commendable. His vocals already bring pain to the song. But it is his acting that really consolidates all of that emotion and set it into stone for me.


Song – 10/10
Music Video – 9/10
Overall Rating – 9.6/10

[Review] I’m Not Over You – Ryeowook (Super Junior)

The first major comeback of 2019 is Ryeowook’s long-awaited solo comeback, I’m Not Over You. This is his first release since his departure from his military enlistment and The Little Prince comeback back in 2016. He also rejoined Super Junior for the One More Time promotions in October of 2018. His solo comeback was supposed to be back in December of last year (with teasers released) but was delayed last minute until today due to health concerns. Hopefully, Ryeowook has fully recovered and is able to showcase his vocals and music releases this year.

Following  The Little Prince, I’m Not Over You takes the ballad route. It is a nice ballad with soothing piano instrumentation. There was also some orchestra in the instrumental. It was very lightly featured during the start of the song. Almost inaudible because the piano was the main instrument heard. It builds up gradually as the song progresses, going for a climatic and epic peak during the bridge of the song. This drew my attention to the song as it added energy and a very attention-grabbing period of music to the slow ballad. It slows down for a moment afterwards but climaxes once again during the final chorus. Besides the instrumental, we need to discuss Ryeowook’s vocals which were superb. His vocals were perfect for the ballad with the title ‘I’m Not Over You‘ being the one line that just I anticipate every time I listen to the song. That falsetto during the bridge was definitely another highlight to the song and showcases his skills in a jaw-dropping manner.

I think the video was pretty good. The scenes we saw throughout the video simply showed the main story. That was, Ryeowook is searching for his lover using the many satellite dishes and tracking computers that he has in his room. But while that seems to be a tad too technological for a ballad, that isn’t the case whatsoever. Ryeowook was shown singing in these sets, reminding us that the song is the main attraction and that the video was a simple aid in helping us understand the music video.

Song – 10/10
Music Video – 9/10
Overall Rating – 9.6/10

[Review] Whatcha Doin’ – Yesung (Super Junior) & Kim Chungha

Kim Chungha is nominated for Best Female Solo Artist and Best Collaboration in this year’s KPOPREVIEWED Awards. Click here to support Kim Chungha and your other favourite artists.

We have a new duet release, which brings together Yesung from Super Junior and Kim Chungha. Their new single is titled Whatcha Doin’. Interesting fact, if you guys don’t know, is that this isn’t the first time Chungha has collaborated with an SM artist. Earlier this year, the solo artist joined forces with Seulgi (Red Velvet), SinB (GFriend) and Kim Soyeon (GI-DLE) for Wow Thing!, which was released as part of the Station X 0 project. Yesung has also been busy with the Super Junior comebacks that fans were treated to this year.

Whatcha Doin’ is a pop track that brings out the vocals of Yesung and Chungha. Yesung has established himself as one of the main vocals of Super Junior, while Chungha has been showing off her singing capabilities this year through her solo releases and collaborations. Together, they compliment each other extremely well. Both their vocals aren’t heavy, which goes perfectly well with the light pop instrumental of this song. All of this results in a pleasant track to listen to. Throw in a simple yet catchy hook to open up the chorus, I thought this was a very nice collaboration. I did like the soft ‘awoo awoo‘ in the background during the chorus, which added an extra depth to the song. They could have gone for something a little more unique but nonetheless, it was a good song.

I thought the concept for this video was rather cute. At the start, they were both nervous to make that first move. The way they interacted with each other was really well thought out, pushing the phone to each other despite each of them in their own halves. The Boomerang feature was also a cool addition to the video. Overall, I liked the video’s appeal and its fitting nature to the song.

Song – 8/10
Music Video – 8/10
Overall Rating – 8/10

[Review] One More Time (Otra Vez) – Super Junior & REIK

Super Junior has returned with their special mini-album and the title track, both titled One More Time (or Otra Vez in Spanish). This is the group’s first comeback since Lo Siento promotions earlier this year (which featured both the Leslie Grace and the girls from KARD) and it is also the first comeback for Ryeowook, who recently finished his mandatory military enlistment. For this comeback, Super Junior collaborated with REIK, who is a well-known band in Mexico.

Once again, Super Junior has jumped on board with the Latin trend. Personally, I thought Super Junior would have moved on from this style already, so I am genuinely surprised that they are having another go at the genre. It isn’t a bad song in any way. I just thought there would have been something more to really make it stronger. Instead, I got a lacklustre feel from the song. The main infusion of energy comes during the chorus but I felt that was quite plain. It just didn’t have a memorable feel to it, which is a little disappointing. I was expecting a rap sequence to be thrown in there, as that may lift the song a bit. But there was no rap sequence. The vocals were good but I felt they could have been built more. I did like the ad-libs for the song, towards the end of the song from both Ryewook and Yesung. The song doesn’t really appeal to me, overall.

I thought the sets (or are they real rooms?) for the video were stunning backgrounds for the Latin-based song. The colours and patterns really feel suitable for the style. While it was a standard music video, there is a section which I cannot help but cringe at. Unfortunately, the scenes with REIK and Super Junior together (where REIK is just playing instruments and Super Junior is hyping behind them)  looked really awkward and boring. Not sure what they were trying to accomplish there but this song doesn’t really beg for that type of scene. Maybe if the members danced around REIK, that would have been more suitable. Just what we got wasn’t.

And it seems like there is an imbalance of energy between the song and the choreography. I fear that is the case but as we have not seen a full performance and the choreography scenes didn’t last too long to really ‘feel anything’ from them, I will be returning in the near future to re-write this section.

Song – 6/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – TBC
Overall Rating – 6.4/10