PASSPO☆: Beef or Chicken?

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Honey Dish 5/5

Starting off the album is a high energy pop rock song. It’s a classic Passpo song, except it seems more cute somehow. I thought this was pretty generic before, but it is a really cute and catchy song once you listen to it more than once. The versus and chorus are pretty rockin. I love the English phrases throughout the song. Great way to open the album!

Itazura Rock’ n Roll 4.5/5

Another high energy pop rock song, though this leans more on the rock side! This clearly takes inspiration from American rock. The chorus get’s kind of repetitive in my opinion after a while, but I’m in love with versus: Mio sounds really cute at the beginning of the song.

Not in Theory 5/5

I love that passpo fully embraces rock, not just sticks with pop rock . This song is more darker than the group usually does; reminds me of songs like Wing and Baby Jump. My favorite part is at the end of the chorus where there’s that overlay of voices and the fade out, then Shiori’s part! I thought it was a great showcase of both her vocals and the songs’s innovation. Definitely impressed with this one.

Himawari 3.5/5

The song is classic passpo pop-rock. As much as I want to like this song, I feel as if it’s a tad too weak to be a single. It has a nice sound to it, but I feel as if the song is repetitive. I definitely don’t think this is their worse song, but it just isn’t as strong as their past singles.

Shiny Road 4/5

The beginning of this song is classic idol music. I almost thought I had the wrong group, but then the rock hits. I find this song weird because the group sounds like a regular idol group, but then there’s this hard rock background! It works, I’m digging this song. It’s cute, but the rock arrangement separates this song from being generic sounding. For some reason, the song sounds like a Momoiro Clover song, like some of the members sound like Ayaka and Kanako. This is goof for a b-side

Heaven’s Burger 5/5

The energy picks up again for this amazing number. Again, this song is a tad more cute and more “idol” than the group usually does, but again it works for them. I find the overall theme for this song super cute.

High Tension Emotion 4/5

Another pop rock song, but stronger on the guitar. I don’t have much to say about this song. I think it’s fun, and the “suki kirai?” “kirai suki?” parts are cute. Not my favorite song from the album but not bad either.

FAKE 5/5

Another more dark rocky song from the group! I like this better than Not in Theory, the chorus is stronger, though both are great. I love Shiori’s part near the end: “I’m Faking.” The buildup is great. This should have been Wing’s b-side!

Perfect Sky 4/5

This was released as a single. I think it’s a little weak to be a single. It sounds more like a b-side to me. I think the chorus sounds like something I’ve heard before, but the versus are good. This was the first song the group played as Band Passpo, so it’s nice hearing them play their instruments as a band to this.

You 5/5

We get back into the upbeat classic passpo pop-rock style. I don’t know why, but I absolutely adore this song. I find it super sweet due to the lyrics. The chorus is also really catchy with the repetition of the “Hey You”‘s. Near the end, I also really love Ai and Shiori’s solo lines. This song just has really cute nice touches to it, like the slowing down of Shiori’s line near the end.

Fairy Tale 4/5

Ending the album is this mid-tempo b-side. I quite like the versus of the song. The member that sings first, I think Nachuu, also has a really unique tone to her voice. The laid back instrumentals and the wind/air effects give this song a relaxing feeling. It’s fitting to end the album with this song, though I felt “I” did better to end the album in JET!JET!JET!

I’m pretty blown away by this album from the group! While Jet x3 had more of a hard, intense rock sound, passpo went more pop on this album, though still incorporating some hard songs. The group honestly continues to surprise me, and they are getting better and better with each release. Members even wrote the lyrics to many of the songs on the album, and they seem to be serious about their band thing as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Crayon Pop: Evolution Pop

 

Vroom Vroom 3.5/5

This is one of the songs that had to really grow on me. When I first heard this song, I was kind of disappointed. It seems too linear, and not exciting enough. The chorus and after chorus are very catchy, but the rest of the song is kind of bland. This song reminds me of a song that would have been released in the Saturday Night era of crayon pop.

Too Much 5/5

Things pick up a bit with this song. My first impression of this was that it doesn’t sound like a crayon pop song, but like any other group’s song. Even if this song has less of crayon pop’s quirkiness, it’s still really catchy! I love the chorus as well as the rapping at the end of the second chorus. This song is really cute and reminds me of something Girls’ Day would have released in their early days.

Doo Doom Chit 5/5

This is the 2nd song the group used to promote this album, the song they promoted the most, and rightly so! Doo Doom Chit is filled with energy and character. Right off from the bat, you get an explosive sax solo, with the girls chanting their group name. And the energy never goes down throughout the whole song. My favorite part is the “Baby Baby I’m so Fantastic Girl” sung at the end of each chorus. The dance, while simple, is really cute and matches the song well. This song is very “crayon pop” while still creating a new sound for the group.

Boogie Woogie 5/5

This song is the song that made me want to listen to this album in the first place in the sense that it was the first song that immediately caught my eye (ears?). The chorus is really the best part of the song with the repetition of “Boogie Woogie Baby.” The “Hey Hey leggo go” parts are really cute as well. Once again, this song could have been just a generic cute kpop song, but it’s the little added features that crayon pop adds that makes this song more than that. Unlike Too Much, this song feels more “crayon pop” to me due to its more disco instrumental.

Tonight 4/5

We get away from the more cutesy stuff for something more dark. Tonight is more serious, yet still keeps the signature playfulness of the group. It’s a pretty straight forward song that repeats the versus and chorus without change, but I like the “peek a boo” parts at the end of the chorus. Also, the screams and weird haunty noises are really cool. This song sounds a Halloween song, but yet it still fits the album nicely

Get it Here 5/5

This song is more dance and less disco, and it’s definitely one of my favorites off of the album! It combines classic k-pop with Crayon Pop’s unique sound. The chorus is so catchy with the repetition, and the raps in the song are my favorites from any crayon pop song.

Sketch Book 5/5

Things slow down even more with this song. Sketch book is the typical sweet kpop song. I could see Oh My Girl or Lovelyz singing this, even Apink. But again, it’s the vocals and delivery of the song that makes it stand out. My favorite part is at the end of the chorus where ChoA sings “Everything is Spring. Everyone’s all good. Everything all right.” In addition, when all of the girls names are mentioned near the end is also really cool. Overall, I think this song is super sweet and I was expecting something like this from this group.

Love Couple 4/5

I wasn’t expecting a song like this either. This sounds like it came straight off of a drama OST. The formula is the same! Random guy rapping + girl sings the chorus = every drama ost ever. It kind of makes me mad that this wasn’t used in a drama because it’s so perfect. Ignoring all of that, this song is pretty nice. It’s semi-up beat and pretty catchy.

Bar Bar Bar 4.5/5

Ah, the song that got the group famous (for a while). It’s not even worth debating if this song is catchy or not. Everything about it is extremely catchy and addicting! I’ve listened to this song too much to the point where it has gotten old, but I feel like this song really represents Crayon Pop’s style and image the best even if it isn’t their best song (In my own opinion of course). I love the “Hey, You Guys” part the best. It’s just so random.

Uh-ee 3.5/5

What kind of kpop group releases a trot song? Only Crayon Pop of course! Trot is seen as something only older Korean women sing, but the group pulls it off. The instrumental for this song is great, but I don’t 100% love this song. Maybe because I just don’t like the trot sound. Even if I’m not a huge fan, I think the vocals and personalities of the girls really come out in this song due to its silliness.

FM 5/5

If we’re just talking about singles (not album songs) FM is definitely the group’s strongest single ever! FM is this melancholic power ranger-esque song that still keeps the groups dance theme. I love the build up to the chorus, which is amazing. People may view the slightly monotonic vocals as boring, but it fits the song so well. The group seriously outdone themselves with this epic song.

Saturday Night 3/5

I believe this was the groups debut song, as in it was the first to have an official MV. Unfortunately, I’m just not a big fan of this song at all. I think it rightly set the tone for the groups image, as it sounds very disco and dance themed. I just feel like the vocals and the rapping are a little flat. This was not the best song to debut with because it just didn’t stand out enough.

Hello 4/5

A piano is something you never hear in Crayon Pop’s song. Oh wait. This is Strawberry Milk. The sub unit of the group made up of twins ChoA and Way! I haven’t checked out their mini album, I only know their other song OK, so I’m not sure what kind of image Strawberry Milk has. But this song is pretty nice. It’s a typical ballad in it’s structure. As stated before, the piano sounds really nice. It’s the vocals that really give this song it’s character. Way is definitely the best singer of the group. She’s proved that in lives and in other songs. But ChoA blew me away because she usually sings very “cute” so to hear her belt her lines was amazing.

 

As a jpop lover, I understand why some jpop fans do not like kpop. I feel as if kpop can sometimes be repetitive and generic (so can jpop), so I try to highlight groups that are doing something different and Crayon Pop is definitely one of those groups that aren’t choosing to conform to the generic kpop group.

Evolution Pop is probably one of my favorite kpop albums ever, even rivaling f(x)’s Pink Tape. Crayon Pop is such a diverse group full of quirky, talented members, and this album showed that they can do it all, from trot, to disco, to dance, to standard Korean pop. They are so underrated that it hurts to see how many people are sleeping on this group. I’m excited to see what the group releases for their next comeback!

Juice=Juice: First Squeeze! (Disc 2)

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WONDERFUL WORLD & ca va? ca va?: See review here

CHOICE & CHANCE 5/5

This song’s instrumental is hardcore. Well, more hardcore than the group usually does. I love the instrumental, it’s so interesting. I love the girls all taking turn singing their short solo’s in the versus. The chorus is catchy and has a good rhythm. Most of all, I like Tomoko’s goodbye part! It sounds like some filter was put on Akari and Yuka’s vocals? Other than that, this is a solid song.

Ai ・Ai ・Gasa 5/5

This is a very happy and upbeat J=J like song. Love how the song starts out with the chorus, which is definitely the best part of the song with the repetition of the Ai Ai Ai Gasa part. The solo’s are on point, and everyone pretty much has an equal chance to sing. Love the ending part with the I love you…I want you…I need you which reminds me a lot of AKB’s Heavy Rotation.

Umaretate no Baby Love 5/5

Another upbeat song! Reminds me of ai ai gasa, except less dreamy. This song actually made me check out this album. I usually do not bother too much with album, but once I heard this song live, I had to. Overall, this is one of the best songs on the album to me.

Erabareshi Watashitachi 4/5

This song takes a lot to warm up to. It’s one of those “mature” songs that sounds generic in a way. but if you listen to it, it eventually sticks. Not sure I like those weird shouts in the versus. Also, despite Sayubee having the most lines, Yuka’s vocals fit this song the best. Not bad, but it took me too long to fully like the song.

GIRLS BE AMBITIOUS 4.5/5

This song has a lot of energy, I love it! The line distribution is extremely fair, and every member gets their own solo line. Love the chorus part where they sing “Yeah Yeah Yeah Girls be Ambitious.” This song would song great live, but seems to fall a little flat in this recording.

Ai no Diving 4.5/5

Another mature song, like Erabareshi Watashi. I think this song is superior to Erabareshi Watashi. It has a really interesting instrumental, and the chorus repetition of “Ai no Diving, yuukan ai no diving” is really catchy, along with the ending. Akari sounds amazing here as well.

Tick-tock Watashi no Shun 5/5

This is definitely the most fun song on the album! It has a fantasy-like feel to it. The members sing with a lot of emotion in the lyrics, and there are a lot of singing parts. The chorus is really fast paced, and it’s overall one of the best songs on the album that feels like it would be fun live too.

Mirai e, Saa Hashiridase! 3.5/5

Probably my least favorite song out of the whole album. It just sounds really generic, and the vocals sound a little strained in the chorus. I do like how they say their name at the end of the chorus, and the song gives off a feeling of a concert ending song or an encore. This will probably become their song.

Tsuzuiteiku STORY 4/5

The album closes with a ballad. I don’t think the group has done any ballad’s ever before, so for their first ballad, they hit the nail on the head. This song is nothing really special. In fact, it would be really boring, but the members have amazing strong and distinct vocals that really “make” the song. The versus are my favorite part!

 

So this is the groups first album! It took them many years to release one, but it was so worth it. H!P albums can be a hit or a miss, this one was definitely a hit. The new song’s were overall really great, and had diverse sounds.