[Album Review] Power of Density (1st Studio Album) – Wanna One

Warning – This is a very long album review! 

Wanna One has returned with their assumingly final release before their impending disbandment at the end of the year (even though that hasn’t been 100% confirmed yet). This final release comes in the form of 111 = 1 (Power of Destiny) – I couldn’t include the number bit in the title of this post as its format doesn’t show properly. The album consisted of 11 songs, including an intro track (which I didn’t include in the review), the title track Spring Breeze and a special CD only track.

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111 = 1 (Power of Density) Album Cover

2. Spring Breeze (봄바람) (Title Track)Click here to read the full review of Spring Breeze. (9/10)

3. Home (집)Home is what I wanted when I mentioned something more energetic and upbeat in my Spring Breeze review. Home is an upbeat dance track, with a very normal instrumental and I admit that the song is quite linear throughout. Despite that, the song has impact, which does level out the linear nature. I thought the song’s instrumental had a decent build-up, which allowed the chorus to be very strong. Vocals were showcased in a very cool manner, with a very melodic factor reeling me in for more. The raps were perfect for the song. A right level of energy and roughness made it fit right in. I do hope they have a performance for this as I want one so badly. (9/10)

4. Flower Bomb (불꽃놀이) – Living up to the second half of the title, the chorus was explosive in comparison to the rest of the song. This is what I wanted with the song when I first heard the title. The burst of energy made the song robust and appealing. The vocals and raps were still at the forefront of the song, which was a concern at first given the nature of the chorus instrumentation. But I am glad that they were clear because their vocals in this song were a nice element. Besides the chorus explosion, I thought the delayed and staggered explosive nature of the final chorus was a really great way to make the song less repetitive and more interesting. (8/10)

5. One Love (묻고싶다) – I like the overall sound of One Love. It starts off as a typical R&B song, but it picks up into something a little more upbeat and intriguing. I really like the slight twist that follows the main chorus (the ‘One Love…’ lines) because it gave a punch to the song, which made it enjoyable (and hence that ‘typical’ nature disappeared). What makes this song even better is that it showcases the rappers (Daniel, Jihoon, Guanlin and Woojin), who usually do not get much limelight in some of the group’s other songs. The vocalists were also amazing, but I felt the song did the rappers justice. (8/10)

6. DeeperDeeper is my pick for the most aesthetic song on the entire album. Not just the lyrics but I thought the sound was rather aesthetically pleasing. I thought the vocals (excluding the chorus vocals) and the raps had a heavy tone to them, which I guess goes hand-in-hand with the ‘Deeper’ title. I thought their echo-y ‘Deeper’ to be a very strong and interesting hook to the song. The vocals at this part seem to be like shouting, which contrasts nicely with the rest of the deep and husky vocals/raps you hear in the song. I thought the instrumental was nice, which went for a piano and drum beat mix. (8/10)

7. Hide And Seek (술래)Hide And Seek is similar to slow ballad-like song on this album. Like most songs on the album, the vocals are quite crisp and clear. I thought the rapping added a nice dynamic to the song, particularly during the bridge. The melody of this song was decent, making me sway along to it. The only issue is that it doesn’t lose that typical feeling. It just feels like any ballad and that doesn’t really live up to the standard set by the other songs on the album. Hence, I find it to be the least captivating. But don’t misunderstand, the song isn’t terrible in any way. (6.5/10)

8. Awake – I think if we were to pick one member who stood out in the synth-heavy Awake, it would have to be Woojin. His rap sections were just so amazing. I really like the fast tempo of the song during the chorus and the upbeat nature was quite addictive. Vocally, the song was awesome. I thought the people who sang the chorus had the best bit of the song (besides Woojin’s rap sequences). It is one song that I personally want to see a performance, as I think they can nail it a dance to this song. Personally, it is one of my favourite tracks on the album. (9/10)

9. 12th Star – This song is only present on the physical album, so I wasn’t going to review it. However, after checking a lyric video for it on YouTube, it will be rather disappointing to miss out on talking about this ballad. There is a lot of emotion in this song, which you can hear behind the voices of both singers and rappers. I liked the many attempts to keep the song from becoming too repetitive, which is a common occurrence in ballads. The harmonizing at the end and the slight stillness in the instrumental kept the song appealing and impactful. (8/10)

10. Pine Tree (소나무)Pine Tree is a touching tribute to their parents. It is a pop ballad that sums up their gratitude to those who raised them from young. With such an emotional song, you can’t help but wonder how their parents reacted to the song. Surely, some tears were shed, and smiles were formed. I felt like every member shined in this song. I am not saying that because it was for their parents. But I genuinely thought everyone was well-balanced with one another and no one really became showcased, so it was not just a song for their own parents but for each other’s parents, as well. (9/10)

11. Beautiful (Part II) – When I first heard the highlight medley, I was automatically drawn to this track. The reasons were obvious. It has a more pronounced ballad feel, with the much slower and more orchestral heavy instrumental in the background. There are a few familiar melodies and moments from Part 1, with a number of tweaks throughout the song. I like how with some of the lines that were the same between the two songs were sung in a different manner in this one, giving a new form to the older song. The rappers also had a fair amount of singing lines in this song, which I thought was nice (as they have good voices). Overall, Beautiful (Part 2) is a beautiful ending to the album. (10/10)

Overall Album Rating – 8.5/10

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111 = 1 (Power of Destiny) Teaser Image

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[Review] Spring Breeze – Wanna One

Wanna One has returned with what could be their last album release before their scheduled disbandment at the end of the year.  The album is titled 1¹¹=1 (Power Of Destiny) and it features the title track, Spring Breeze. But despite the talk of this being their last release, there are ongoing rumours that are giving fans some hopefulness of contract extensions, with concert venues booked for January of the next year and the need to represent Wanna One at the award shows occurring at the start of next year. Whatever the outcome is, Wanna One and their influence will never be forgotten!

Spring Breeze is another dance track to add to Wanna One’s portfolio with the inclusion of some synth pop in the background. Like the song’s title and lyrics, the song felt fitting for a nice breezy day. You know those scenes with long grass on a nice sunny day with a constant breeze. That’s the day I am imagining when I listen to this song. I was quite surprised by the final outcome of the track, as I thought they would have gone with something a little more ‘Energetic‘ or upbeat. But they went with calming and soothing, instead. Like Beautiful, Spring Breeze zone right into the group’s vocals which I thought were nice, overall. The raps, on the other hand, were underwhelming for me. I guess I something a little more hard-hitting when it came to the raps, rather than rap-speaking. I think the way they ended the song, with all the members joining in, was an excellent way to close the song but also close this chapter with each other.

While there are many ways to interpret a song and a music video, if you are given the context you can only interpret them one way. There is no doubt that this is what I am doing with this comeback as it seems to be the right interpretation. The video shows the members having fun with each other. They enjoy each other’s company through the many interactions together. I particularly like the panning from left to right just before the choruses, which shows the members just doing that, similar to their chorus in I.P.U. But their close-ups show something else. The members look very passionate and intense in their close-ups, which could potentially be showing how sad they are in regards to their end. I found those scenes to be heartbreaking yet touching. I thought the choreography scenes looked spectacular with regards to the grand sets they had.

[Updated: My original comments still stand] We do not get to see much of their dance in the music video and their first live performance isn’t until this Thursday. However, the music video shows what I think will be the highlights and the main pointers to their choreography. I liked how they fitted their dancing into the slower tempo and how it looked extremely graceful. My favourite bit has to be the choreography for the first half of the first chorus (when Jaehwan starts singing). Their movements were so fluid yet strong in a subtle way.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 10/10
Performance – 9/10 [Updated: Original Performance Score Remains]
Overall Rating – 9.3/10

[Album Review] 1÷x=1 (Undivided) (1st Special Album) – Wanna One

Just one week ago, Wanna One dropped their very first special album. Light is the main title track for this album release and it also features 4 songs, produced by well known artists in the industry and is performed by a special unit of members. Zico, Heize, Nell and Dynamic Duo collaborated with Wanna One for this album. It is the group’s best album yet in my opinion and it is definitely an album that sets the bar high for any future release.

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1 ÷ x = 1 (Undivided) Album Cover

1..Light (켜줘) (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for Light. (8.5/10) 

2. Kangaroo (캥거루) (Triple Position – Kang Daniel, Kim Jaehwan & Park Woojin) (Prod. By Zico) – It isn’t surprisingly to hear this song was produced by Zico, mainly because the song just screams out his presence. It grew on me since the first listen and has become a really catchy song with its upbeat and hip-hop vibes. I thought the song played towards the strengths of each member (in both rapping and vocal domains). I thought the chorus was quite lively and it was a song that brought some happy energy to the somewhat serious album. (9/10) 

3. Forever and A Day (영원+1) (Lean On Me – Hwang Minhyun, Yoon Ji Sung, Ha Sungwoon) (Prod. By Nell) – This particularly song was a beautiful ballad. Right after my first listen, I scrambled to figure out what the lyrics meant because it was so heartfelt and the emotions poured in the song really drove the song. For those who don’t know, it felt like the farewell song we expect them to release when they come to the end of their contracts. I love the song’s swaying effect that can be felt right in the melody. But what I love the most about this song is how it has given me a chance to hear some amazing vocals from the group. In particular, Sungwoon’s. Because let’s be frank, he has yet to shine in any of Wanna One’s songs. (10/10)

4. Hourglass (모래시계) (The Heal – Ong Seongwoo & Lee Daehwi) (Prod. By Heize) – Another song that really hits you in the feelings. The R&B song is heartfelt and beautiful, as well. Like the previous song, it too can be mistaken for a farewell song (check out the lyrics, they are amazing yet incredibly sad). Both member’s vocals were on point. I really like Heize’s featuring in the song, which further adds emotions into the song. The harmonies at the end were nice and the piano leading out of the song was great. My favourite part would have to be the entire second verse, with Seongwoo’s rapping and Daehwi’svocals at the ‘Don’t let yourself cry’ line. (10/10)

5. 11 (No. 1 – Park Jihoon, Bae Jinyoung, Lai Guanlin) (Prod. By Dynamic Duo) – While I have loved or enjoyed so far on the album, I felt that 11 was the weakest song on the track list. I don’t exactly hate the song but it just doesn’t appeal to my taste. It takes on a hip hop and R&B vibe, while also keeping to a sensual sound. I personally find this interesting because they have chosen some of the youngest members to perform the song and it also gives us a chance to experience some variety in their sound. Dynamic Duo’s featuring was nice and Jinyoung’s vocals stood out for me. Other than that, I wasn’t into the song. (7/10)

Overall Album Rating – 8.9/10

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[Review] Light – Wanna One

Wanna One has returned with a brand new special album, 1 ÷ x = 1 (Undivided). Following their hits earlier in the year, I.P.U and Boomerang, the group has returned with the title track, Light.  The special album (which I will review) features 4 other tracks produced by different and well-known producers. Each track contains different members, so it is going to be interesting. But that will be for the album review as we refocus back on their comeback title track, Light.

Light falls in line with their past tracks. It is dance track that features trap synths in the background. The first initial listen did feel a little underwhelming but the song has definitely grown on me within hours of its release. I particularly like the vocals in the song but it stands out the most in the opening moment of the song. I really liked the flick upwards in the final syllables in some of the lines. The song buildup was nice, pairing well with the raps. Unfortunately, I think the chorus was a little too straightforward and I feel like they could have made it different somehow to make it pop more. While the ending did work, a part of me feels like they could have eased off instead of going out abruptly. Despite that, the song was still quite good and it has landed on the replay playlist for this week!

When it comes to the music video, I was disappointed. For a group of this popularity, I expected them to go all out with each music video. Personally, I thought the choreography shots were good. However, they were quite limited. The rest of the video consisted of closeup shots of the members staring at the light and then running towards it. There wasn’t anything going on besides that really kept me interested. The feature image I chose (that section of the video) was the one part that had to be cringing though because you can tell it was filmed on a green screen a mile away. I am used to videos doing it in a more polished manner, which ends up looking good. That wasn’t felt much here.

The performance was quite good. They take a more sensual approach with their slow hip thrust for the chorus. While hip thrusting has been done before, it looks and feels completely different in this performance, which is a great thing. I also liked the contrast between the fast-paced music and the slower yet powerful dance moves. They pair well together and it makes for a good choreography.

Song – 8.5/10
Music Video – 6.5/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 7.8/10

[Album Review] 0+1=1 (I Promise You) (2nd Mini Album) – Wanna One

 

Wanna One is the latest group to make their comeback in the past week. They completely took over the latter half of 2017 with their comebacks and it is expected, with their fan following, to do extremely well this year as well. Their second mini-album consists of Boomerang, two versions of the pre-release track (I.P.U) and 4 other songs. So let’s get going with Wanna One’s album review!

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0+1=1 (I Promise You) Album Cover

1..Gold – There was an epic and grand feel to this track. It isn’t the most amazing track out there but it was a nice opener to the album. The EDM (and rolling drum beat) instrumental was awesome. The vocals were quite smooth, while the rappers were also quite nice. The song had a nice melodic hook that was enjoyable and pleasing to listen to. (8/10)

2. I.P.U (I Promise You) (약속해요) (Pre-Release Track)Click here to read the full review for I.P.U. (8.4/10)

3. Boomerang (부메랑) (Title Track) – Click here to read the full review for Boomerang. (7.1/10)

4. We Are – This seems to be the weakest track on the entire album. It has potential to be an awesome track. However, some aspects do hold it back. The drop could have been more epic. Everything in the EDM instrumental works, just the drops just didn’t feel special or mind-blowing. Rather disappointing, if you don’t mind me being blunt. The vocals and raps each add a different texture but it all cohesive. Finally, the final moments of the song just feel like an unnecessary extension of the song. It draws it out longer, which doesn’t make much sense. (6/10)

5. Look (보여) – Just with one listen to the track, I want to see this being promoted alongside the title track (or even replacing the title track). The instrumental to this track is particularly attention-grabbing and epic. When the song first started, I thought the song went with a jazzy style but I was caught off guard with the EDM elements that emerged later on. I also liked the launch into the final chorus and the choppy effect at the very end of the song. (9/10)

6. Your Name (너의 이름을) – Your Name is a ballad on the album. It has a nice melody and the vocals were quite heartfelt. The rappers also contributed by ensuring the song wasn’t boring or too repetitive. I really like the orchestral-like instrumental and everyone knows I am a sucker for violins. I liked how all the members sung together in the final chorus. (8/10)

7. I.P.U (약속해요) (Confession Version) – Different versions of the same song make you feel different emotions. I.P.U‘s original version (see track 2) is EDM based, while this version is more ballad-like. And it is clear that the song works both ways. In a way, the song sounds very emotional and extremely heartfelt. The vocalists shine with the ballad style, while the rappers (with some tweaking) managed to work well despite the limited scope of the instrumental. Some reshuffling and parts were removed but everything worked. Overall, it was a nice closer to the album. (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 7.9/10

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0+1=1 (I Promise You) Teaser Image

[Review] Boomerang – Wanna One

2017’s ‘monster rookie’ has made their first official comeback this year. Boomerang is the title track off their latest mini-album, 0+1=1 (I Promise You). Gearing up for this comeback, Wanna One dropped their pre-release single, I Promise You, two weeks ago.

Boomerang, at this very stage, is a decent track. It isn’t a mindblowing track, mainly because its chorus seems to be a little weak for my tastes. It could have been more captivating by having a more powerful and intense EDM hook (more bass?). The lines that make up the chorus could have been a whole lot better, particularly how they don’t seem to connect with the music whatsoever. While the rappers and vocalists all sounded awesome, each section for each person felt ridiculously short and it just suddenly jumps to the next person. To an extent, the different parts do seem cohesive together but it is borderline at best. The ‘Wing Wing Wing Boomerang‘ (despite how odd it sounds as words) before each chorus were a nice killer part as well. The pre-choruses also had a nice buildup, while the bridge was probably my most favourite part of the entire song. Overall, it is a little underwhelming at this very moment. However, who knows how a few more listens might drastically change these comments!

I am totally liking the black and gold palette that they went for in this video. It looked really cool. On top of that, I liked the individual sets as they too had this cool feeling to them. The camera angles/work went well with the song’s energetic and upbeat style. There wasn’t one moment that looked odd, so it was a really good video to watch. It would have been more interesting to see more of the members dodge the arrows that Daniel was trying to dodge. That alone would have made an awesome video to watch.

The main move at ‘Wing Wing Wing Boomerang‘ was definitely quite cool. The choreography during the chorus could have worked better if they were packed together. On stage, they just all seemed separated. I am sure that the aesthetics of the performance could have improved if that was the case but I guess safety first. Everything else looked good.

Song – 6/10
Music Video – 9/10
Performance – 7/10
Overall Rating – 7.1/10

 

[Review] I Promise You – Wanna One

Wanna One, the hottest rookie of 2017, has returned with their first comeback for 2018. I Promise You (or I.P.U) is a special theme track for Wanna One’s fans and it also serves as a pre-release for the upcoming mini-album release expected to be released later this month.

Wanna One starts off 2018 with another great song, which joins the ranks of their previous title tracks. I.P.U is a really good song. It has the feel of your standard yet modern KPOP song but in a few ways, it is quite fresh. I really liked how the song started. The vocal and then quick buildup with the raps was really nice. You have the impression that the beat would drop but this wasn’t the case. Instead, we are thrown back into some more vocals, delaying the drop and definitely leaving you at the edge of the seats. This wasn’t repeated before any other chorus in the song, opting to just throw us right back into the chorus. Vocally, Wanna One is really good. But I think the winners of this particular song are the rappers, who definitely did an amazing job just before every other chorus and that buildup section at the start. Once the beat does drop, you are thrown into an addictive chorus. Interestingly, the first chorus is simply just the instrumental, while the second and third ones had vocals as well. I think the way the producers of this track changed it up was rather simple, yet it worked wonderfully.

The music video was fantastic. I love the spinning scenes at the start. Yeah, we have seen it before but it looks like really good cinematography in this video. I also liked their montages during the chorus, where things get a little chaotic with the streamers and confetti. Sure, it is a rather simple idea (and has been seen before). But Wanna One makes it look fun and I literally stopped a few times to see what each member was doing.

The performance, from what I can see in the video, looks rather nice. It just doesn’t have anything topping their previous choreographies, which is okay. I think they reserved that aspect for their main title track. I did like the moves during Daniel’s vocals parts during the second verse but I didn’t see anything else to jump out at me. I may return once there has been a full performance uploaded.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 9/10
Performance – 6/10
Overall Rating – 8.4/10

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] 1-1=0 (Nothing Without You) (1st Repackaged Mini Album) – Wanna One

The highly sold album of the past week is none other than Wanna One’s repackaged album, 1-1=0 (Nothing Without You). From mostly trainees to a chart-topping team, it is truly remarkable of how far they have come. This post is going to be a relatively short one as I have elected to not review the remixes (Track 5 and 6) and tracks 7 to 9 were on their debut mini-album, 1×1 =1 (To Be One). Thus, these tracks will not be used in the ‘overall album rating’ which I put the end of each album review post. Let’s get the show on the road.

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1-1=0 (Nothing Without You) Album Cover

1. Nothing Without You (Intro) – The intro track basically gives you a little taster of the entire album. To me, it drew various parts of the newer songs on the album and presented them in a much shorter format, which makes a lot of sense. It is nice, but it was a rather forgettable part of the album, mainly because of the following track, Beautiful, steals the show as soon as it starts. (7/10)

2. BeautifulClick here to read the full review for Beautiful. (10/10)

3. I Want To Have You (갖고 싶어) – Continuing the flow of the album thus far, I Want To Have You is another slow dance track, with a few moments that divert away from that direction. Vocally, this is another outstanding effort from the group. I also thought the raps were quite nice, matching well with the ballad-like nature of the song but still maintaining that standard rapping momentum. (9/10)

4. Twilight – Besides the tracks that follow (either remix of their main tracks or tracks pinched from their previous mini-album), this is the closest you get to a dance track. It isn’t that strong of a track, in my opinion. It felt more like a standard pop song. It gives the album some energy and transitions well into the tracks that follow. (7/10)

5 & 6 (Burn It Up Prequel Remix & Energetic Prequel Remix) – Click here for track 5 and track 6.

7 – 9 (Wanna Be (My Baby), Energetic & Burn It Up) – Click here to read full album review for 1×1=1 (To Be One).

8. To Be One (Outro) – They bring it back to the slower side which started off this album with their slowest song yet. It does pick up a bit towards the middle of the raps. It packs a punch and if extended, could have been a decent track to go back to. Also, it closes the album quite nicely, which is the most important job of an outro track. (8/10)

Overall Album Rating – 8/10

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Beautiful (Performance Version) Screenshot (Source: SOOMPI)

[Review] Beautiful – Wanna One

Wanna One have officially made their highly anticipated return with Beautiful and their repackaged mini-album, 1-1=0 (Nothing Without You). Wanna One has wowed fans with their power, topping charts as soon as their debut, Energetic, was released. Even when I am writing this review, Beautiful has gone on to top majority of the charts, 2 hours after their release. It is clear that Wanna One is a powerhouse rookie for 2017.

The title of the track summarises the song very accurately. Beautiful is a very smooth song that makes me want to sway along to the melody and instrumental. It touches on the ballad side of music but also maintaining that dance component really well. It isn’t as poppy as their debut track, but instead, it feels more emotional and how many people would say “from the heart”. I really enjoyed how Daniel started and ended the song with this rap speaking autotune part. I really liked how soft the song was during the first verse and how that ended up contrasting the louder and powerful “I Miss You Much” pre-chorus. And the chorus was just so damn good. The vocals in the song were flawless and equally as breathtaking are the raps. The song itself felt flawless. And in my eyes, they probably cemented themselves as one of the best rookies of the year.

If you haven’t watched both the prologue and the music video, you are missing out. The prologue basically starts the story off by showing how two young brothers were separated. Talk about making it emotional. The actual music video shows how the two brothers are living separate lives. One of the studies to become a policeman (Seungwoo), while the other (Daniel) is doing odd jobs (one of them is at a boxing gym). The two brothers end up reuniting one rainy night, which was a nice sight to see. They end up catching up and spending some time together. Daniel, with his odd jobs and maybe Seungwoo, managed to buy his dream motorbike. Until one day, Daniel’s crew get into a big fight with a gang, leaving the gang either dead or very injured. Seungwoo, who walks by with an ice cream ends up helping Daniel and his friends by letting them get away and takes the blame for what happened. This results with Seungwoo unable to take the police exam and ends up working at a construction site to rebuy the motorbike that his brother had to sell in order to pay back the gang. Daniel goes onto to join a boxing competition (I assume it is for the monetary reward and to make up for what he did to his brother). Seungwoo ends up falling down the stairs and Daniel ends up badly injured in the match. The video ends there and I am hoping for some extra video that ties up the story. Amazing storyline and the acting is captivating. A must watch.

The performance is too good. I just am speechless with the dance routine. I freaking love the chorus, with how they seem to be hugging someone but in a solo format. The choreography matched the music perfectly and gracefully.

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

[Album Review] 1×1=1 (To Be One) (1st Mini Album) – Wanna One

The biggest group in the industry is no doubt Wanna One. Their debut completely smashed the charts. Digital or physical (albums) charts were completely dominated by Wanna One, who even managed to knock down a very legendary group of KPOP. Their debut mini-album, titled as 1×1=1 (To Be One)  is just the start of their journey for the next year and a bit. At first, I wasn’t sure whether I would be reviewing their mini-album, but given their performance in just the first two weeks of their careers, it would be rather disappointing to not look at them even further.

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1×1=1 (To Be One) Album Cover

1..To Be One (Intro) – Despite it being very short, it does grab your attention from the get-go. It was a powerful piece of music that does what it was intended to do. The drop was a little unexpected but gave the track a very interesting side. Though I don’t tend to include the intros into the rating, I happy to, as this scores quite high in my books. (9/10)

2. Burn It Up (활할) – If you want to get the full experience with Burn It Up, I recommend listening to the performances. The fans (for some odd reason) give it a hyped feel, which I think suited the song quite nicely. Just listening to the audio, I could feel the song needed bass. However, the performances have so much that is makes the song sound so great. Burn It Up is extremely catchy and intense from the get go. All the elements work extremely well, from the rap to the vocals. (8/10)

3. Energetic (에너제틱) (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for Energetic (8.5/10)

4. Wanna Be (My Baby) – If the title track was there, this could easily have been the title track. I actually thought this song nudged ahead and was the best song on the entire album. The combination of the raps, vocals and instrumental felt more dynamic in the song. It was definitely a ‘loud track’ that didn’t hold back and I actually liked that. Despite that, the bridge managed to slow down for a few seconds, which gave the listeners much-needed relief from the intensity that they already felt and what was to come for the rest of the song. (10/10)

5. Always (이 자리에) – If I am not mistaken, Always was the song that all the trainees performed in the finale as a reflective piece for their time on the show and a way of saying thanks to all the viewers. To me, it was a bitter-sweet end to the album. Wanna One does a great job of carrying that same level of emotion that was felt in the finale through this song. It is a beautiful ballad, which evens out the intensity that the rest of the songs contributed to. But listening to the song reminds me of the other trainees who could have made it into Wanna One and that makes me sad. (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 9/10

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Wanna One

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[Review] Energetic – Wanna One

Out of all the debuts this year, Wanna One is the most hyped and awaited comebacks of the year. For those who don’t know, the group members were selected as the top 11 of Produce 101 Season 2 competition. The trainees forming the group include Kang Daniel, Park Ji Hoon, Lee Dae Hwi, Kim Jae Hwan, Ong Sung Woo, Park Woo Jin, Lai Kuan Lin, Yoon Ji Seong, Hwang Min Hyun, Bae Jin Young and Ha Sung Woon. The group will remain as Wanna One until the end of 2018 so they will be sticking around for some time.

Wanna One pretty much lived up to the high expectations and hype that garnered around their comeback.  Energetic starts off as a dramatic piece, with a slow piano background. It then starts building up to be one totally rocking song.  The song itself is one that is quite upbeat and full of energy. There were many different sections to the song, but they all work well with each other (no disjointed feeling anywhere). The raps were pretty powerful and they sounded perfect for the song.  The vocals for the most part gave the right impact to match the energy intensity of the song, just some parts (such as the first verse fell a little short). Overall, based on song alone, they have nailed their debut. I suggest that you listen to the song with some bass turned up (such as a pretty good pair of headphones) because the song sounds so much better that way. 

This song called for an intense music video with that typical flashy background with amazing choreography shots. We needed something edgy to compliment the intense sound of the song. For the most part, the choreography shots delivered.  The rest of the video did not. I just don’t think a bunch of guys having some fun (such as in this video) by playing baseball and having great big smiles on their faces was the way to go. That is just what I personally feel about the video. But what we have  front was decent enough overall.

The video choreography looks amazing and intense.  Perfect for the song. It looks really complicated but edgy enough for the song. Everything that I wanted the music video.  That piano start looks like the highlight for me!!!

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