- See more at: http://www.helperblogger.com/2012/01/auto-read-more-button-with-image_31.html#sthash.2Esf9UIw.dpuf Shady Candy Shop: Album Review: BoA "The Face".

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Album Review: BoA "The Face".

Cheap smartphone camera shot!

In "celebration" of the upcoming "new" BoA album, I decided to review the only one of hers that I own a copy of: The Face. This record and the whole era itself have many things in common with her current era/style, and "Who's Back?" (Upcoming new Japanese album). The most obvious being the fact that she'll include a shit ton of singles in the tracklist, and that Who's Back has potential to be a HOT ASS MESS, since there's no concept and seems like everything will be rushed with no actual musical direction. Onto my first album review!

The Face starts with AGGRESSIVE, which is an uptempo track. Featuring no real instruments at all and tons of synth, AGGRESSIVE has regular production values, common arrangement and decent vocals. While it is nothing special, it does set the mood for the album. Credit where it's due though, I shake my booty to this song whenever I listen to it.

If there's something else in common between Who's Back and The Face, is the inclusion of an OLD ASS SINGLE. For this album we have Sweet Impact. Released in 2007, this track flows perfectly from AGGRESSIVE since both use tons of synth. While Sweet Impact is not a bad song by any means, it drags on too much. Cloking almost at 5 minutes of pure synth. "Whatchu feel? Whatchu See?" BoA asks... I feel dizzy and see stars spinning around my head. Cut this shit off.

Then we have My Way, Your Way Feat. Wise. Who's Wise? I don't know, but he did a great job with his rapping. BoA's voice and his, flow very well together. This track is slower paced than the previous ones, and has a "cutesy" charm going on. Typical girl-loves-boy-boy-loves-girl stuff. But it is damn charming. No synth in this one!

All the momentum fades away thanks to be with you. We have a mid-tempo pop ballad after and before another up-tempo track. be with you. is a great song, while not having the largest vocal range or even a powerful voice, BoA holds her own very well in this ballad. And just like you would expect, there's a piano, and it only adds up to the whole awesomeness of the track.

Back to up-tempo land with Lose Your Mind Feat. Yutaka Furokawa. This has to be the best of all the dance tunes in the album, Yutaka plays his guitar along all the song and even has a great solo in the bridge. Lyrics are nothing special though, typical and generic girl power shit. BoA was around 21 at the time, so I guess it was still acceptable to come up with something like this, the fact that the chorus and music itself are damn catchy, help A LOT.

"Crazy? Sexy? Kawaii? Sniper? Whatever you want!"

Now onto the filler tracks! Girl In The Mirror and Happy Birthday are some of the few new tracks in the album, and both of them are nothing to write home about. Girl In The Mirror is a dance tune that tries too hard to sound "hot", even for 2008 standards. Still that beat tho, good for some booty poppin' action. Happy Birthday slows things down, cutesy shit that brings me memories of Kumi's cringe worthy cutesy songs. Again: Nothing special, only remarkable thing is BoA's actual ability to harmonize in this song.

Diamond Heart carries the cutesy thing over, and while better than the previous 2 tracks, it is still nothing that you'll remember after listening... Nevermind, the creepy dude claiming to have been doing something "forever" will stick with you, he'll chase you in your dreams. "And don'tcha know babe? I've done dis shit forever". NEXT!

Shit gets real with Love Letter, mid-tempo pop ballad to which BoA co wrote the lyrics for. The strings in this track are gorgeous, I'd listen to them over and over again even if BoA wasn't singing. And she does a damn good job in this one. One of the highlights of the album.

Brave has to be my fave song in this record, not only it stands out for being different from all the other tracks, but it is a mix of genres that works very well together. It's pop, it's r&b, it's got a cool electric guitar and a laid back beat going on. Besides the lyrics are easily amongst the best in this album. Be brave bitch, even if he/she dumps yo ass, you remain strong! I learned that the hard way... 

Anyways, more filler!. Gyappu ni Yarareta! is yet another cutesy, filler song. Only thing going on for it: BoA wrote the lyrics herself. Style is Girl In The Mirror II with some lyrics borrowed from Lose Your Mind. It also tries too hard to be hot or a banger, which it fails at. Not bad songs by any means, just not good.

"Filler tracks are part of MAH STYLE. Deal with it".

Smile Again is yet another track to which BoA wrote the lyrics for. (Gurl be working her ass off). A down-tempo ballad, it reminds me a lot of K's My First Christmas. That should give you and idea of this song sounds like: Just like another winter ballad. Nothing wrong with that, because the song is beautiful. Lyrics are indeed meaningful (or so I believe), and while it clocks at 5:42, the strings, piano, and BoA's vocals keep it from being a snoozefest. Highly recommended.

Beautiful Flowers was a grower to me. I couldn't stand the chorus at first, it annoyed the shit out of me. But the overall melody, catchy verses and of course, the strings, got me hooked. One of my faves from the album. What can I say? "Kono machi mah homeground", love yo town, you live there ho.

We reach the conclusion with Best Friend, more cutesy shit! This chick really likes dat sweet bitch style. I do enjoy this song, again nothing too special. But it works, sadly it doesn't stand up at all. Sounds similar to Diamond Heart or Happy Birthday, actually I believe HP and BF are sisters or something, they sound the same.. It does it's job to be a decent album closer though.

Overall I do enjoy this album, and while it seems that I despise it... I don't. I bought a copy for a reason. While it only features... like 4 new songs, and most of them are nothing special. The album works as a whole, even if there's no actual concept going on... I usually listen to all the tracks without skipping, because it is an enjoyable record that has a decent flow throught it's length. Recommended!

I expect her new album to be very similar to The Face. I have enjoyed all her recent singles (Only One onwards, Woo Weekend what?), and while the full tracklist is not out yet... It only features 2 new songs for now, or so I believe... Whatever. I'll post about it soon!

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