Baek Ji Young Vol. 5 – Smile Again
Baek Ji Young finally makes a comeback with her fifth album after a long two years. As a fan, the album was good. As an amateur critic, this album does not meet the anticipation it should have — heck, it’s been two years. Baek Ji Young has always had a unique, smoky voice, and yet it had not been portrayed much in her previous albums. That voice is finally showcased on this album as she attempts the ballad, and even made her title song a ballad [사랑 안해 (I Won’t Love)]. Her title song, simply put, is boring. Even though ballads are new to her, she can’t expect to be remembered as a ballad singer if she picks such boring songs as this. There are far better ballads on this album, and I recommend the songs [가리워진 길 (Dead End)] and [널 사랑해 (I Love You)]. These two songs are very soothing and her unique voice is very well portrayed, making it all just fit. I expect these two songs to stay in my playlist for awhile, since I’m not sick of them yet.
Her dance songs are definitely better than her ballads. Many have the addicting beats and rhythms like the ones from her previous albums, which make them quite powerful. I really can’t tell if it’s her husky, smoky voice that makes them powerful, but her songs do not have the typical "pop, cutesy" rhythm. Although not all the songs are great, many of them are very appealing and I expect them to hit the clubs in Korea. My two favorites are [Woo Ah] and [못 (Nail)]. Woo Ah has this random guitar solo in the middle, from a Latin-type song. At first, I was just like "omgwtfbbq." However, as I listened to it multiple times, I found it appealing and it definitely fits in with the rest of the song. 못 (Nail), to say the least, simply is a really addicting song.
Overall, the album is average. The only new thing is that she tried her hand at ballads, and though she is mediocre at best, she fails miserably when compared with some of the other great vocalists. I would suggest her to go back to dance, as it just fits her style better.
Recommended Songs: 축제 [Festival] (#5), 못 [Nail] (#6), Woo Ah (#4), 널 사랑해 [I Love You] (#11), 가리워진 길 [Dead End] (#12), 가지마 [Don’t Go] (#8)
Planned Singles: 사랑 안해 (I Won’t Love)(#1), Woo Ah (#4), 가지마 (Don’t Leave)(#8)
Available online at YesAsia.