CNBLUE: BLUEMING

By Paris365 on April 20, 2016

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Release Date

4/6/16

Genre

K-Pop

Label

Loen Entertainment

CNBLUE: BLUEMING

CNBLUE are back with the brand new mini-album -- their 6th vol. -- entitled, what else, BLUEMING. To which end, you could certainly say that their new tunes are blooming, as they overflow with sun-drenched melodies and one infectious chorus after another. According to Yes Asia it's a "seasonal" release featuring "various sweet love songs," so if you're looking for a spring fling, this should get you in the mood, provided you can understand Korean. (Actually, the music has that vibe to the point that you should pick up on it even without comprehending the lyrics.)

The four track release kicks off with "이렇게 예뻤나 (YOU`RE SO FINE)," a funky number that calls to mind '70s disco. Some very smooth bass guitar here. "Oh baby, love is good," sings Jung Yong-hwa and it's impossible to resist. Easily one of their strongest singles to date. Sometimes I do a little dancing for exercise and I can see myself dancing to this one.

"The Seasons" follows and is a fun enough number. A lovely melody, peppy handclaps and vocals that make it sound like Jung is lovesick, obsessing over some crush. And there's no better time to start a romance than the spring, right?

If there's one thing I wish was slightly different about this release it's that the beats aren't particularly hard. Very soft drumming here and it prevents some of the songs from reaching their full potential. "Young Forever" is a wonderful song, but it's somewhat lacking in energy. If the drums had more of a kick, it would move you that much more. I'm not asking for hard rock, mind you. I just wish there was a bit more pep.

"I can live without you," Jung sings at the beginning of "Without You," a perfectly melancholic song with pretty piano and a swirling melody. In spite of the fact that I wish there was a bit more vigor on this mini-album, this song is actually my favorite and, yes, it's pretty light. I wouldn't change a thing about it though. After all, it's a ballad -- a blooming ballad -- and doesn't need instigating beats. It does have a great guitar solo though, if brief.

The English language song "Stay Sober" is the final track on hand and it's wonderful. It reminds me of classic AM radio soft rock from when I was a kid. Which makes me sound old, I'm sure, but you get my point. Musically, this isn't that far removed from something Chicago or America would have put out in the '70s. The only thing about this one that's a little bothersome is the lyrics of the chorus. "Let's stay sober tonight"? If you're in AA, this song should be very relatable and will probably become one of your favorite songs by the time you're done listening to it for the first time. But for the rest of us, it just seems a little silly. If the guy doesn't want to get drunk with his girl, that's certainly fine with me. I just don't see why he has to write a song about it. Is this a PSA he was forced to do because he was caught drinking underage or something? (I know it's not, but it kind of feels like that. If parents wrote pop songs, this is what they would be like.) Still, even though it seems cheesy and like something you'd get from a hardcore Christian rock band, it's still nicely arranged and has contagious vibes in spite of being so soft. -Michael McCarthy

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