Kurayami Monogatari

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U-KISS – Action July 6, 2015

Filed under: U-KISS — solarblade @ 6:30 am

action

Track Listing

  1. Black hole ~Intro~
  2. FEEL IT
  3. LOVE ON U
  4. Action
  5. Sweetie
  6. If…
  7. Brave
  8. JACKPOT
  9. Head Up High
  10. One Call Away
  11. Mou Ichido
  12. You are the reason ~Ending~
  13. U-KISS 2015 Associate Mix (CD only bonus track)

1. Black hole ~Intro~

The album opens up with a lengthy 2 minute introduction, but I feel like it would’ve been amazing if it was a full song because it’s very uptempo and has a good sense of rhythm.  Seems like the rappers do take the front at least which is pretty awesome since we’re still getting accustomed to Jun.  It’s a nice start to the album, just wish it was a full track hahaha.

2. FEEL IT

Which leads to the B-side from “LOVE ON U” and I’m OK with that because I definitely was in love with the song more than the A-side!  From the darker atmosphere and smokier vocals from Hoon, Kevin, and Soohyun really held the song on a pretty high line and loved every moment.  Even when Jun and Eli join in, their rapping sections just added that more spice to make things cooler!  Great track to kick things off!

3. LOVE ON U

Which leads into said A-side that begun the album era, LOVE ON U was also the Japanese debut for Jun and ironically he opens up the tune!  Though that’s really all we hear from him as the usual suspects makes their presence known and Eli takes up the rapping section.  Unlike the EDM in “FEEL IT”, LOVE ON U is a bit more sultry and tackles more of their R&B side of their music.  It’s not a bad song though, pretty ok middle song.

4. Action

As the leading promotional song, Action was a lot brighter than I had hoped it would turn out.  Notice the album cover and imagine it with a breezy upbeat light song and you have Action.  Honestly, I felt like I was listening to a OST song from them hahaha!  It has been a while since U-KISS did a happy-go-lucky song such as this so it was a nice change of pace, but I don’t feel like it was the best of choices?  I do like the even line distribution and all and Keseop~.  It’s cute though I’ll give it that.

5. Sweetie

Then we move to the other single released for the era with Sweetie and it was the ballad A-side.  Sounds like they worked and slowed things from “Action” quite nicely.  As a Christmas song, Sweetie is ok, but not really all that memorable in their strings of ballads, but the harmonizations and emotions behind Kevin, Soohyun, and Hoon’s voice is pretty stellar, even I admit!

6. If…

Moving onto its B-side, If… had such potential in the beginning with the synth melody and very soundscapey-background sounds, but then it doesn’t really head anywhere besides having such nice harmonizations like in “Sweetie”, also Jun’s rap is somewhat deadpan here haha.  It’s trying to be a strings-based dance track, but I feel like it lacks in places throughout.

7. Brave

Back onto new songs, Brave seems to be a little more like a mix between “If…” and “Action”.  Though, the kind of 90’s pop sound that I got from this song really stood out to me.  Once again, the 3 main singers really stood out to me in this song as it really opened up the song to really showcase their vocals.  Of course, Keseop gets a nice line too which is surprise and I’m trying to focus where Eli and Jun lie here as they kind of sat back for this one.  I definitely think it’s a much better ballad than “Sweetie” was!

8. JACKPOT

Oh those trap hi-hats huh?  I’m surprised as it started off kind of synthy but quickly moves into this heavier guitar-laced arrangement on top of Eli’s rapping.  It does seem really weird coming after “Brave” but this song sounds pretty edgy and has a certain vibe to it that I enjoy about it.  I could also hear a certain idea of what it could be without the brazen guitars, but honestly this song is pretty cool, but coming after the previous track, it’s just a little strange.

9. Head Up High

So the next two songs are bolded pretty much because they were sold together as a tour single so it kind of counts, right?  Another upbeat synth track, Head Up High was something I was hoping U-KISS would release as they haven’t had a cool dance track.  Sung only by Hoon, Keseop, Eli, and Jun, the tune is pretty catchy and I could easily make this a favorite.  Also, Jun has a solid deep voice on him wows!

10. One Call Away

Which leaves Kevin and Soohyun with the other track and unsurprisingly it’s another ballad (when will these two do an upbeat track together?).  It’s a simple sounding ballad with some bass and piano together.  Sadly, the song just doesn’t do anything for me in the long run as it’s pretty basic (though Kevin’s high note was a surprise).

11. Mou Ichido

Another ballad?  Yup, Mou Ichido comes next and it’s just “One Call Away” with some strings and some R&B elements thrown on top.  Though I’m not surprised that Soohyun is leading the track though which is a bit meh as we just had a lot of his voice in the previous track.  Actually, I have a feeling it’s only him singing which is bringing my interest even further down.

12. You are the reason ~Ending~

Seems like the ending track is at full length at 3:32.  It mentions the black hole from the opening (thanks to a monologue from Eli).  Then comes the singing with some stronger percussion as well…at this point the slower songs seem to drag further and beyond Eli’s section, I wasn’t remember much of the rest of the tune.

13. U-KISS 2015 Associate Mix

But the album isn’t over yet!, the album actually ends with a medley of the songs from the album (which is at this point so unusual to hear).  Not exactly the best thing to include on CD only as it just reminds you of what you just heard not 5 seconds ago!

Tracks Recommended

  • Brave
  • FEEL IT
  • Head Up High
  • JACKPOT

Song of Avoidance

  • Mou Ichido

Released a day short of a year after their last album, “Memories”, Action marks as the first album with their new member Jun and I don’t know where I stand with it.  A definitely lighter trip than their last album for sure, but I don’t feel like there was much depth with this one.  A lot of ballads caused the album to kind of crash at the end of the album for sure.  There’s just not a lot to say about this one, not one of their better albums.

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