Album review: Alex – My Vintage Romance
Alex – My Vintage Romance
(reviewed by dihei)
01 어느새 Eoneusae (Soon)
02 그대라면 Geudaeramyeon (If It’s You)
03 넌 언제나 (feat. Thomas Cook) Neon Eonjena (It’s Always You)
04 기다리게 해서 미안해요 (Sorry Because you had to wait)
05 발끝을 적시는 눈물 Balkkeuneul Jeokshineun nunmeul (Tears that wet the tip of my toes)
06 Feel Like Making Sunshine
07 깍지껴요 (feat. Gaeko from Dynamic Duo) Kkakjikkyeoyo (Empty shell ____)
08 Waltz lesson (feat. whale)
09 연인 Yeonin (Lover)
10 사랑하오 Saranghao (I love you)
11 기분 좋은 날 Gibun Joeun Nal (A Good Day)
13 Miss. Understand (feat. Simon Dominic)
14 데이지 Deiji (Daisy)
15 화분 (Bonus track)
Known for his romantic, velvety and sexy voice, Alex of Clazziquai has just released his very first solo effort titled "My Vintage Romance". Befitting his romantic image, this album consists mainly of love ballads that are interspersed with songs from a variety of musical genres such as soul, R & B, rap, modern rock and jazz. The album features various collaborations with groups like Loveholic, W, My Aunt Mary and Dynamic Duo.
01 어느새 Eoneusae (Soon) [5 stars]
I absolutely love this track. It’s actually my favourite track in the album. Definitely a fitting opening song for the album. I love how the song begins with Alex’s vocals and accompanied by just the guitar in the background. I love how the various musical instruments mesh together to create that beautiful and harmonious acoustic sound. What really stands out here is Alex’s vocal performance which is raw, pure and crisp as he sings this song with such aplomb. Definitely pure vintage Alex here!
02 그대라면 Geudaeramyeon (If It’s You) [5 stars]
This is the title song of the album. When I first listened to this song, it seemed to lack the rawness and ‘oomph’ of Track 1. But, when I closed my eyes and listened to it a second time, I finally understood why it has been chosen as the title song of the album. It’s one of those songs that grows on you as you listen to it more and more. Alex really pours his heart and soul into singing this song. It is so rich in feeling and emotions that it just makes me want to fall in love over and over again.
03 넌 언제나 (feat. Thomas Cook) Neon Eonjena (It’s Always You) [5 stars]
Wow, another favourite of mine. I guess this is what they call ‘modern rock’. When I first heard it, it absolutely blew me away. I’m assuming Thomas Cook plays the guitar and sings the back-up here because his vocal part is really minimal towards the end of the song. It’s absolutely catchy and refreshing, one of those songs that I would like to sing along to even though the lyrics are Greek to me. I wish there were more tracks like this one in the album but sadly, there are none.
04 기다리게 해서 미안해요 (Sorry Because you had to wait) [3 stars]
Aawww, anyone who’s a fan of "AlShin" in the Korean variety show ‘We Got Married’ would have been able to identify with this song. By the way, to all the “AlShin” fans out there, Alex wraps up this song with the two magic words ‘LOVE YOU’. Oolala!
05 발끝을 적시는 눈물 Balkkeuneul Jeokshineun nunmeul (Tears that wet the tip of my toes) [4 stars]
Definitely the track with the most creative title. Another lovely ballad from Alex that is sung straight from the heart. Man, he sure knows how to touch our hearts with his soft, velvety and romantic voice. Gives me the feeling that he’s singing this song just for me. Absolutely awesome.
06 Feel Like Making Sunshine [4 stars]
Another up-tempo, upbeat and catchy song that makes me tap my feet, drum my fingers and sway my head left and right as I listen to it. It’s absolutely light, breezy and sunny. This one really makes me light-headed and happy. Check out the English lyrics in the chorus – feel like making love songs for you; one for me; one for you; one for all of us – Aawww!
07 깍지껴요 (feat. Gaeko from Dynamic Duo) Kkakjikkyeoyo (Empty shell ____) [4 stars]
One of two R&B/rap-influenced songs in the album. Very soulful and funky. I can’t help but snap my fingers and move my body as I listen to it. I think Alex did really well here although I think he’s more of a pop ballad singer rather than an R&B one. Love his falsetto here as well. As for the repetitive ‘Come with me’ in the background, you will either love it or hate it.
08 Waltz lesson (feat. whale) [3 stars]
This song is really easy on the ear. Makes you feel like dancing the waltz with your beloved while listening to it. It also has a really playful feel coupled with a tinge of childishness and innocence. Alex sounds like a little boy taking his first lesson in waltz. I love the part where Alex lets out an amusing laugh before launching into his trademark falsetto tone. Don’t know why they bother featuring Whale in this though – her part is really negligible.
09 연인 Yeonin (Lover) [3 stars]
A typical run-of-the-mill love ballad. My least favourite track on the album. It really is a bit too slow and dull for me. Alex’s vocal performance here is just so-so for me.
10 사랑하오 Saranghao (I love you) [3 stars]
Another typical run-of-the-mill love ballad. However, if you’re in love and would like to spend a quiet, romantic evening with your beloved, then this is the song for you. Vocal-wise, Alex does pack dollops of sweet, saccharine love and longing for that special someone as he sings this.
11 기분 좋은 날 Gibun Joeun Nal (A Good Day) [5 stars]
Whhooaaa, now we’re talking. Was almost falling asleep after Track 10. I absolutely adore this track. It is just so cute, like Alex himself. If there’s one song that represents who or what he is, then this must be IT. It’s cute, cheerful and playful … I think you pretty much get the idea. I love the part where he whistles as well.
12 Daydreaming [3 stars]
A soft jazzy tune, another refreshing change in an album dominated by love ballads. I love the piano that accompanies Alex’s singing here. Vocal-wise, I would say that Alex’s voice is just too soft for him to pass off as a jazz singer. Definitely not his genre.
13 Miss. Understand (feat. Simon Dominic) [4 stars]
The other R&B/rap-influenced song in the album. Not as funky and upbeat as Track 7, but definitely more soulful. Absolutely have no idea what Simon Dominic is rapping about but I think he sounds better than Gaeko from Dynamic Duo. The surprising part is how well the rapping blends in with the melody of this song.
14 데이지 Deiji (Daisy) [5 stars]
Other than Track 1, this is my other favourite love ballad in the album. I love how the momentum of this song is built up as it goes along and how the various instruments come together to create that beautiful and mesmerizing melody. There’s so much feeling and emotions in this song. Another song that you can appreciate better if you were to listen to it with your eyes closed and imagine that Alex is singing it just for you. Definitely a fitting finale to an album that begins on a slow, acoustic manner and ends on a rich, orchestral note.
15 화분 Flowerpot (Bonus track) [6 stars]
Aawww, what more can I say about this song that hasn’t been said already. A classic rendition by Alex in that rich, velvety and emotional voice of his. All that love and longing come across so beautifully in a heartfelt manner. I tell ya, I just can’t get enough of this song even though I’ve been playing it to death ever since I first heard it on ‘We Got Married’.
Overall, if you’re looking for an easy-listening and romantic album in various genres to spice up the night with your beloved, then this is the one for you.
OVERALL RATINGS : 4/5. I would have rated it 5/5 if the title song had more of a ‘wow’ factor in it. I don’t know if the title song of an album should be something that grows on you rather than one that hits you with a ‘wham, bang and slam’ effect. I just feel that Track 1 or Track 14 would be a better title song for this album.
5/5 – Even if you’re not a fan of this artist/group this album is a must buy.
4/5 – If you’re a fan of this artist/group, you must buy this album.
3/5 – If you’re a fan of this artist/group, you might want to add this one to your collection.
2/5 – I don’t think a fan would even buy this.
1/5 – You might as well just flush your money down the toilet.