Album review: Zi-A Vol. 1 – Road Movie

Zi-A Vol. 1 – Road Movie

01 I’m Happy (3rd single)
02 What About Me?
03 I Love You, I’m Sorry (1st single)
04 Distant Place
05 I Only See You (feat. Big Bang –TOP)
06 Because I Only Know Love
07 Sorry, Mom (4th single)
08 Will You Smile For Me
09 Feel a Rush (2nd single)
10 From Shin-Chon to Hong-Dae
11 Star
12 Absent-Mindedly
13 Barely
14 Confession
15 Old Clothes
16 I Love You, I’m Sorry (Piano Ver.)

Purchase this album


Using a faceless concept, Zi-A debuted last year with a highly successful mini-album "Voice of Heaven", and at the end of last year, she had another hit "Violin" from a compilation album. Now finally revealing her face, Zi-A released her 1st full studio album "Road Movie" this summer. She also performed actively on music shows and played the piano as well to show that she is multi-talented.


However, for some reason Zi-A did not generate as much of a buzz this time around. The title song "I Love You, I Am Sorry" again features a mega-production movie-like MV starring Shin Hyun Joon and Miss Korea Honey Lee. Like her previous MVs, more than one song is involved in the MV storyline. "I Only See You" is the other song with the same MV. Even though "I Only See You" was not officially released as a single, it featured Big Bang member T.O.P’s rapping, and a lot of fans may choose to listen to this song instead.


Top songwriter Cho Young Soo, who has written all Zi-A’s hit songs last year, is again active in this album. He wrote the first 3 tracks of the album, including track 1 and 3, which have been released as singles. Other notable writers included Min Myung Ki (who wrote many hits for Gavy NJ), and singer KCM, who wrote "Barely" for Zi-A.


As many as 4 singles were released on this album, and Zi-A had performed on stage for all 4 songs, a rarity in Korean music. Of these 4 songs, I like "I Am Happy" (track 1) the most. I am particularly fond of piano-arranged ballads, and this song is a perfect fit. Zi-A also played the piano herself while singing this song on stage. But my favorite track in this album is "Because I Only Know Love" (track 6). The chorus part of this song is especially beautiful with Zi-A’s emotional vocal.


Unfortunately I think this is the kind of album that you really like at first, but the more you listen, the more you don’t like. This is bcause all songs are just too similar in style. All the ballads recorded in this album are of good quality, and Zi-A did a superb job singing them. Things can’t go wrong no matter which song is selected to be promoted. But then, nothing really stands out. At the end, I was kind of disappointed as I’d expected more from Zi-A now that she’s no longer faceless. I hope she will expand her musical horizons in future.



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