Kim Taeyeon just released her solo debut mini album entitled “I” and it’s rocking the charts. This album is one of precise work and excellent delivery. These five songs capture Taeyeon’s personality and all her emotions. Much like many of the solo songs Taeyeon has done in the past, this album contains two ballads which convey through the power of her voice a message so profound. This is the message Taeyeon wishes to express through her music as a solo artist and without being tied down to a specific genre or category by the members of SNSD. Not to say she’s not expressing herself in those songs, but as was conveyed through the “I” music video, she wishes to escape from her work and live free without bounds. This is applicable in her work as an “idol”. She wishes to escape those bounds and be free to express herself as she wishes and I think that’s what has happened with this album.
The first track on this mini album is the title track “I”. This track is fighting the bounds of alt rock, EDM, and ambient music styles. It’s got a clean guitar playing a simple riff throughout the entire song but with builds on it and tons of delays and reverbs. The build up to the chorus is very reminiscent of EDM builds. Her vocals of course are on point and more expressive in this song than ever before. I feel like this song is exactly what she wanted to do musically.
“U R” is the second track on this album and the first ballad. It starts off with a gentle piano and Taeyeon doing some ohs over it. This song is so simple. It reminds me of what she’s done in the past with OSTs. However, there seems to be more emotion in her voice here. Her voice is almost shaking from emotion but it’s not loud belting emotion, but rather a calm but powerful vocal pattern. Her voice is really soft in this song but she hits every not with precision. The way she hold out the notes and blends them into vibratos is incredible.
“Gemini” is the next song and this song has some R&B roots to it. The use of the piano and the finger snaps is reminiscent of early 2000s R&B. She does some interesting things vocally in this song. The way she turns her voice in various spots in incredible. There are parts of this song that remind me of Mariah Carey just because of the runs she chooses to make. However, I’m not in any way comparing Mariah Carey and Taeyeon. There would be no competition there.
The next song is “Stress”. This song is a high energy, pop rock song. This is the Taeyeon I think everyone was waiting for. This song utilizes her vocal abilities to the high, powerful, belting levels. This is a lot of people’s favorite song on the album and it might be my favorite song too, but I’ll determine that later. This song has very SNSD elements of it as for what she chose to do vocally. I mean this song could easily be an SNSD song.
Finally we have “Farewell”, the last ballad on the album and the final song. It has simple piano and string swells. Her voice is really soft in this song, but once again powerful. The way she chose to go melody-wise for the pre-chorus threw me for a loop but I liked it a lot. She uses a lot of minor key melodies in the pre-chorus and chorus. I believe this is called parallel keys. When a musical piece goes from major to minor but stays in the same key. Either way it is quite impressive.
Overall, this album kills. I don’t care who you are, this album is incredible. This album delivers everything that we could have wanted as SONES. It covers everything from alt rock to ballads to pop rock. This is a very well rounded album and great in terms of musicality. It ventured into some unique techniques and motifs. But I like that in my music. I’m all about the uniqueness that exists in creative music. So, my overall rating for this album would have to be a 10/10.
Thanks for reading and hope you enjoyed my review. Leave a comment below letting me know what your thoughts are about this album or about anything in general. Thanks.
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