GOT7 gifts fans "YOU"

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2018 has been a busy year for K-pop group GOT7. After a Korean mini album release in March, a Japanese comeback in May and a world tour spanning over the summer, the group has been active for virtually the entire year. In addition,  on Sept. 17, they released their full album “Present: YOU.” Featuring solo songs by each member, five whole group songs and versions of the title track “Lullaby” in Korean, English, Chinese and Spanish—this album is full of content that any fan should enjoy.

The first song and title track “Lullaby,” is an excellent opener for the album. This song is anything but a lullaby, as it fits well into the genre of pop and proves to be an excellent dance song. It is perfectly in the style of GOT7, with excellent vocals and rapping and fantastic choreography.

“Enough,” the first of four full group non-title tracks, does not particularly stand out, especially in comparison to the preceding song. Despite this, it still has good production and solid vocal work, as one would expect from GOT7.

The third track,“지켜줄게 Save You,” is another song that does not stand out very much and could benefit from the addition of a few rest beats between each of the members’ lines. However, the instrumental of the song at the beginning does draw the listener in. The song is not a waste of time, but it is also not memorable upon first listen.

The fourth track, “No One Else,” improves the album, as the chorus is very good, featuring well-used vocal filters and tight harmonies. The bridge of the song is also a highlight and main singer Choi Youngjae gets the opportunity to shine throughout.

The fifth and final full group track, “I Am Me,” is even better. It proves to be more interesting and leaves a greater impression than any of the previous non-titles. The rappers in the group get the chance to sing alongside the vocalists here too, which works well for the overall sound of the song.

“Sunrise,” by Im Jaebum, known as JB, the leader of the group and a main vocalist, is a strong start to the individual songs. Stylistically, it is very similar to songs he has written and produced in the past, which works well for him and suits his voice perfectly.

Second up is rapper Mark Tuan with “OMW” featuring a verse from fellow rapper Jackson Wang. “OMW” has a very R&B style that serves to be a pleasant listen, though it is not very new or inventive. Tuan has the opportunity to sing and rap again, which shows a side of his voice that does not typically get showcased.

Wang’s solo, “Made It,” is one of the more questionable tracks on the album. It is irrefutably Jackson’s style, which can either be taken to be an advantage or disadvantage. Also, interestingly enough, though Tuan is the member of the group who grew up in California, Jackson is the one whose lyrics are completely in English.

“My Youth,” Park Jinyoung’s solo, is another song that seems similar in style to his previous work, though it is not unpleasant at all. Park gets a chance to truly express himself and show off his voice in this song, especially in the bridge and chorus.

One of the best tracks on the entire album, “혼자 Nobody knows” is Choi’s solo song. Ordinarily having to share singing time with six other people, he truly gets to shine here as a powerful vocalist. The dramatic tone of the song is also a refreshing change and the production is particularly well done.

Following “혼자 Nobody knows” is, sadly, one of the worst tracks: “Party.” This is rapper BamBam’s first try at a solo song, so the strange musical and production choices could be attributed to the fact that he has not found his own voice yet. The autotune is too much for most of the song and he sounds almost unconfident in himself.

The final solo track from GOT7’s youngest member, Kim Yugyeom, “Fine,” proves to be another one of the best songs on the album. The eerie instrumental is a welcome difference and works well with his voice and overall performance. Kim, as one of the young powerhouse dancers of the industry, also gives an excellent showcase of his dancing in his music video.

Though some tracks are weaker than others, GOT7 once again does a generally good job of playing to their strengths and presenting fans with a solid album. With their record label JYP Entertainment adding its artists to Spotify just this year, GOT7’s music is easier to access than ever and this album is definitely worth a listen.