[Review] Tattoo – The Boyz

Recently, The Boyz made their Japanese debut with Tattoo. But Tattoo is one of the most confusing releases yet. It is their entrance to the Japanese market. But as far as I am concerned, the song only contains a line of Japanese (the rest of the song is in Korean). I have yet to find an explanation for this yet, as I have no idea of what to make of this situation. Furthermore, I am not exactly sure which category of music this goes into. But anyhow, we are here to have a closer listen to Tattoo!

Tattoo departs from the brighter sounds we got from the group through the releases of Bloom Bloom and D.D.D this year. Tattoo does seem to satisfy my craving for an edgy comeback from the group, particularly since they left 2018 with No Air, which happens to be one favourite song from tracks from the group. But I felt the instrumental to be very boring. There wasn’t anything added to the mix to really grab our attention or help make the track somehow standout. The vocals were pretty much similar. And together, it resulted in a bland track. However,  there were a few parts of the song which I enjoyed. These are small details, so they don’t cancel out the blandness encountered. The chorus had a nice melody, especially the opening line to the chorus. I really liked how the bridge was posed as well. I also enjoyed the rapping of this track. The ‘Black and Blue‘ in the pre-chorus was also quite memorable alongside that first line of the chorus. Actually, anything that involved English sounded really good in this track (i.e. Kevin’s line in the bridge).

Two things the music video did really well was its cinematography (i.e. camera work, angles etc.) and the constructed sets. They really helped give the video and song an epic feel. I also liked the closeups of the members in this video. There was something captivating about them, especially for the members who were dancing for their closeups. The video does have this blandness to it, thanks to the hazy nature. But I thought everything else was done well and this really helped the video stand out in my opinion.

The choreography for this comeback comes off as striking for me. There were a lot of moments that I liked (i.e. chorus, the start of the bridge etc.). I liked how the dance really fitted into the different beats of the song. Most groups do this. But I thought this was well-balanced and worth mentioning. During the slower moments, everything was flowy. During the chorus, when the beat was a lot harder, their moves reflected this change in a way that didn’t feel overwhelming.

Song – 6/10
Music Video – 9/10
performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 7.5/10

[Review] D.D.D – The Boyz

I have returned from my mini-break! And now it is time to jump right back into the review wagon and catch up with the few releases that I have missed over the last few days. The first is The Boyz, who returned with D.D.D on Monday. It is the lead single off their fourth mini-album, Dreamlike. This is also their first comeback since Bloom Bloom, promoted back in April/May of this year.

D.D.D fits the group’s image quite perfectly. It is an upbeat track that has a distinctly youthful vibe to the song. The chorus is loaded with energy and I thought the launch between the verse and chorus made things a little more impactful. Furthermore, with a catchy hook that is telling you to ‘Dance Dance Dance‘, I am quite sure many fans are taking The Boyz’s suggestion on board when listening to the song. I thought their vocals were nice and the rapping had a good kick to it, giving added momentum to the song. Even the synth-based instrumental was very packed, giving us something a little different as each section comes. I thought the bridge/instrumental break combination was interesting. I did like the first half of it, with the toned-down approach and move to a dynamic buildup. Prolonging that section is the instrumental break, which I thought was good to an extent. But it didn’t feel necessary when you think about the track as one piece. Apart from that, D.D.D was fulfilling track for The Boyz.

The music video seems to show an Alice In Wonderland-like theme. The bunny guy attracts the attention of each of the members, pulling them altogether from all areas of the city. They all end up going through a portal that brings them together to hang out and have some fun. But why the Alice In Wonderland comparison. Well, firstly the bunny guy gives on the members a pocket watch and at the end of the video, they are all sitting at a long table, which had elements from the fairytale (i.e. tea and a deck of cards). It is a lively video that really goes well with the energetic sound that I mentioned previously.

The Boyz has always had good performances. But I, for some odd reason, do not get that same feeling. Like I could see that the choreography was fitting for the song. But I didn’t see the dynamic side of the group, which they have previously shown through their much better tracks. I did like the entire routine for the bridge, including the instrumental break, which was probably more aligned with their previous works in my point of view.

Song – 8/10
Music Video – 8/10
Performance – 7/10
Overall Rating – 7.8/10

[Review] Bloom Bloom – The Boyz

Also returning yesterday is The Boyz with their latest comeback, Bloom Bloom. This is the group’s first comeback since their 2018 comeback, No Air, which was released back in November. Since then, the group won Best New Male Artist at the MelOn Music Awards in December and embarked on an Asian Tour at the start of the year. They were also my pick for Best New Male Artist for 2018 in the KPOPREVIEWED Awards.

Bloom Bloom is a dance-pop track that is flowery enough for the Spring season but as intense and energetic as you expect with a Summer-focused song. Hence it exists in a limbo between the two, perfect for this time of the year. My first impression of the song wasn’t that great, as I wanted a song to have a kick like their previous tracks that I have enjoyed such as Right Here. But Bloom Bloom’s kick is a lot more subtle and the song has definitely grown on me with more listens (hence, if you don’t enjoy the song, I’d say give it a few more listens). The ‘Bloom Bloom Pow‘ start is definitely impactful. Usually, you would say ‘Boom Boom Pow‘ instead. But the extra letter makes sense for the song that focuses on innocent love and flowers. I thought the raping was overly dynamic for the song. They could have toned it down slightly to make it a little more fitting for the rest of the song. Vocals were pretty good. Overall, Bloom Bloom may not be my preferred sound for the group but it fits in well with their previous songs.

Going hand-in-hand with the lyrics and the title of the track, the song takes on a bright concept. The school-boy concept also returns through this comeback. The main action occurs on the baseball field, with it providing distractions in the form of a dying plant, which the members look after. A powerful whack of baseball also caused a spaceship to fall from the sky. This lead to the discovery of a special ball, which causes fireworks in the sky and the moon to ‘bloom’ in flowers. Overall, it was a nice video that was fitting for the song.

The dance was pretty nice as well. Once again, I like the energy that comes from the chorus. I also like the blooming effect they have in the background (with the members jumping up and down) just before the chorus kicks in, along with the wider movements in the chorus (which kind of give off the same effect).

Song – 8.5/10
Music Video – 8/10
Performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 8.5/10

[Album Review] The Only (3rd Mini Album) – The Boyz

The Boyz is nominated for Best New Male Group in this year’s KPOPREVIEWED Awards. Support The Boyz and your favourite groups by clicking here to vote.

A few weeks ago The Boyz made another comeback with No Air, making this the group’s 3rd comeback of the year (excluding the special single they released). No Air is featured on the group’s 3rd mini album, which has been titled as The Only. The Boyz is one of the rookies that stood out for me this year. With their amazing dance tracks and energetic choreography, I just had to jump on board and review another one of their albums. So, without any more waiting, let’s get to it!

The Only Album Cover

2. No Air (Title Track)Click here to read the full review of No Air. (7/10)

3. Only OneOnly One is a pop dance track that utilises bass and a rolling drumming beat that really gives its addictive nature. On top of that, it also creates an energetic atmosphere that makes it appeal. It also doesn’t help that the hooks were also quite catchy, making this a track not to miss. I must admit that the drop for the chorus was typical, but the rest of the instrumental makes up for it. I thought the vocals were nice, but I really like the deep voice of whoever does the rap-speaking in the song. It goes perfectly well with the rest of the song and is my pick for the main highlight for the track. (9/10)

4. Lucid Dream (자각몽) – While I am sure the song can fit some classy choreography, there is a side to the song that makes it fit for a coffee shop or some boutique store where I live. It has an easy-going instrumentation that gives the song a golden feel. I did like the rapping in this song, whereas the vocals felt very standard. They were still good, so don’t take my comments the wrong way. Personally, I prefer their heavier dance tracks. But there is a certain level of appeal that makes me enjoy this one. (8/10)

5. 36.5° (Melting Heart) – Of course, it wouldn’t be a KPOP album without a ballad and Melting Heart is just that. It does zone into their vocals but it is extremely underwhelming, overall. The track is quite slow for my liking, even though I do enjoy a slow ballad from time to time. The instrumentation seems to take a slow jazz type of approach. To me, I think this is their weakest song on the album. It just doesn’t feel up to par with the rest of the song in terms of quality and I personally had a hard time getting into the track. (5/10)

6. 4EVER4EVER is what I had expected. Following the previous two songs, I was craving a dance track and The Boyz fulfilled my craving. The song has a thankfulness feeling to it, which I think it goes together with the lyrics which seem to be directed to their fans. The vocals were superb in this song, especially with the well-done harmonies. I liked the rapping, but I thought they could have took to the next level and delivered something that impacts the emotional walls of our minds. The instrumental was, once again, typical but I liked the drop for the chorus. I did think the chirping birds were a little odd but I don’t mind them. (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 7.6/10

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

[Review] No Air – The Boyz

The Boyz have returned with their fourth release of the year! I know it is a little hard to believe but let’s have a very brief look at the first 3 releases. In April, they returned with Giddy Up!. In August, the group released a special single, KeePer. And just two months ago in September, the group returned with Right Here. The fourth release is No Air, which is the title track off the group’s 3rd mini-album titled The Only.

No Air has an interesting title, so I became interested when the teasers were slowly released. Essentially, the song lyrics liken not having their significant other to having no air (They cannot live without one or the other). And like the idea of the song, the intro did get my interest up. The use of brass instruments was very intriguing. The song then takes a turn to more of a standard dance track. The chorus drop was nice but it wasn’t as explosive as I hoped for. Both the vocal work and rapping in this song were quite nice but they weren’t as strong as in the past. A similar comment can be made in regards to the main hook during the chorus, leaving the song to lack in the memorability criteria. There was a ‘No Air‘ hook after the second and final choruses but it wasn’t their best. And that practically sums up my feelings about the song. It is good but it isn’t their best.

While their choreography sets aren’t that elaborate, I like the use of the dominant colours in each set, with everything else complimenting the respective dominant colour. Like the purple made dancing in the shallow pool of water look so much cooler. For the rest of the video, I don’t really get what’s going on. I guess they are showing the ‘No Air’ side of things have killed the rest of humanity and they are left to find their one love. But that’s my guess that makes no sense.

The choreography was definitely one of the better components of this comeback. I thought the pulsing nature of the dance during the bridge was a really cool moment in the performance. The ‘No Air‘ hook dance (after the second and final choruses) also show a tough vibe, which I thought seemed cool as well.

Song – 7/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 7.2/10

[Review] Right Here – The Boyz

The Boyz have been quite busy this year. In April, they released and promoted Giddy Up as their first comeback single. In July, they released KeePer as a digital single (which was produced by Park Kyung from Block B. And just yesterday, the group released their first single album, The Sphere, which features Right Here as the title track. So with the review obviously ‘Right Here‘ on this page, continue reading onwards!

The initial thought I had about the song was that it seems to be Giddy Up version 2.0. And that is a good thing, especially since I really enjoyed Giddy Up when it came out. I really liked the upbeat feel that the electro-pop song, which felt like it had some retro mixed into it. It doesn’t really slow down, which is one point of appeal which makes me like the song quite a bit. I like how hyped the pre-chorus felt, which made the launch into the chorus quite spectacular.  Vocally, the song was quite good. What I felt the song needed was a dedicated rap section. There was rapping but it was very sparse throughout the song. The song needed some edge and I think that would have made it so much better. My favourite bit would have to be the extremely catchy hook during the chorus (the ‘Ooh baby baby baby’), which is still ringing in my ears.

For the music video, I really like the colours between the sets and what they are wearing. It allows them to stand out yet fit right into the video. Given their teasers, I would expect more emphasis on the circle, which would have been nice since that was the concept of the single album. I also thought the darkened choreography scene (where they are wearing caps) was a nice change up to the rest of the video (and providing that sense of edge).

The choreography was really good for this performance. The entire chorus was amazing. The stationary side shuffle looked cool but I really like the ‘Ooh baby baby baby’ lineup that they did, which was definitely another highlight for the choreography. It looked fun and allowed the members to be a little crazy than in a set routine.

Song – 8.5/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 910
Overall Rating – 8.2/10

[Review] KeePer – The Boyz

Despite wrapping up promotions for Giddy Up a few months ago, The Boyz have returned with a brand new special single, KeePer. The single is produced by Park Kyung from Block B, who is known for a number of chart topping singles. This comeback also marks the return of Hwall, who was not present during the promotions for Giddy Up due to an injury.

From my understanding, all of Block B’s title tracks were produced by Zico. However, KeePer, despite being produced by Park Kyung, has a few moments that reminded me of Block B’s tracks, such as the start of the song. On top of that, the song was quite pleasant sounding and had a similar flair that I would commonly assoicate to the one Springtime or Summer season song that would get popular on the charts. There was also an innocent and youthful feel to the song which suits the group quite well. Its instrumental was more traditional and refreshing compared to their past title tracks which have been more eletronic based. KeePer had good vocals and rap sections, which added some more colour to the already bright sounding song. I found the chorus to be quite catchy and the track overall stands out because it is a little different to what I would associate with the group. Overall, it is a good song.

The music video takes on a Summer concept where the actual group is split into two smaller groups who don’t really hang out together. Through some events, the two groups come together in the video. I think that was the main plotline in the video, but I am not too sure (I confess I haven’t read the lyrics of the song yet but I have been told that it is a confession song). What I did like was how bright the video felt and the fun vibes that they were channeling through the video.

Despite being limited to a few scenes throughout the video for the choreography, I think I have seen enough to say this performance does stand out due to its youthful and fun vibes. I really liked the formations, particularly the X formation seen at 1:34 of the music video. Also really liked the aeroplane they form at the start and end of the choreography and it is equipped with propellors!

Song – 8.5/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 8.2/10

[Review] Giddy Up – The Boyz

Making their comeback today is The Boyz. They previously made their debut at the end of last year with their debut track titled as Boy. Giddy Up is the title track of their second mini-album, which is titled as The Start.

Giddy Up is a really funky and groovy track to listen to. They don’t hold back from the very start with the retro instrumental. Interestingly, the pre-chorus felt like it quite long. But with the awesome chorus, it was worth the wait. The chorus has a burst of energy that makes the song addictive. I really thought the hook during the chorus was fun and quite catchy as well. While the instrumental does feel extremely packed here, the vocals do make it feel much smoother. Their vocals are nice and the rap sequence for the bridge was cool. I did expect more rap in the song, however, which is usually what happens with a team that has many members and this type of upbeat song did call for it. So I was surprised when it was only limited to one not-so-long-lasting bridge. Also, the track does feel relatively standard to the other releases this week. There were cool elements but I don’t think there was anything particularly outstanding. Despite this, however, Giddy Up is another solid release from the new boy group.

I think this is a really well-done music video. The pinball machine set looked cool and I think it is unique in a way. The way they transitioned out their hockey shirts to their school uniform outfits were also really cool and unique, once again. There isn’t much else to the video but don’t worry. It is still one fun, energetic and well-presented music video to watch.

The choreography for this comeback is amazing. Their sync-ness with each was awesome, which already brought their performance to a whole new level. On top of that, some of the moves they pulled off looked awesome (such as 1:06 – 1:11). And of course, they had to include the horse riding move (I would have literally called them out if it wasn’t there).

Song – 8/10
Music Video – 10/10
Performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 8.8/10

[Review] Boy – The Boyz

A fresh new debut has just occurred and I am not delaying the reviewing until next week. That is a miracle. The Boyz is a 12-member boy group under Cre.ker Entertainment. Their debut comes in the form of the title track, Boy and the mini-album, The First. According to their Wikipedia page, some of the members have previously been in the spotlight through TV shows such as KPOP Star, High School Rapper and Produce 101.

Boy is another pop dance track that we have been seeing a lot lately. And while it is a good song, it really doesn’t have anything that allows it to stand out in the crowd. That’s the most disappointing aspect of the song. It was set up to be a decent song but with the lack of prominent hooks, the song just doesn’t draw any attention. There are many other aspects of the song which I would like to be a little different but they are more personal preferences. The instrumental was pretty much standard but it was still had a nice kick to it. There was a slight buildup to the chorus but I feel like a more defined drop into the chorus would be more suitable. Their vocals don’t really have much uniqueness to it, though there were some nice adlibs at the end of the song. The raps were the most interesting part of the song, in my opinion, fitting very neatly into the fast-paced music during its respective section. 

I am a little confused about the music video. It seems like they each member is paired with another member. And they all seemed to be friends in the past. Fast forward a few years, each pair seems to reunite with each other, leading to many moments of ‘is that who I think it is?’. That or each person was in awe of the other person’s handsome features. The camera work in this music video was also quite smooth and made the music video look quite appealing.

The choreography was spectacular. If I sounded like I was disappointed with the comeback, I apologise for that. However, the dance was quite impressive. From the infinity signs they made with their formation to their in-sync capabilities, it made the entire performance worth watching.

Song – 7/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 7.5/10