Kim Jaejoong – You Know What?

Kim Jaejoong - You Know WhatAs stylish and charismatic a figure as Kim Jaejoong is within the Korean entertainment industry, I’ve always found his solo music to be melodically lightweight. Other than the heavy goth concept of Mine, none of his past singles felt particularly impactful. That’s not to say that they’re bad. It’s more an admission that, to me at least, his image and persona have been more interesting than the actual music.

Currently serving his mandatory military service, Jaejoong has kicked off the hype for his upcoming album with pre-release track You Know What. It’s a gentle, mostly acoustic love song that spotlights his vocals with a playful melody that recalls American pop more than traditional Korean balladry. As expected of a pre-release, it’s a solid — if not spectacular — track. The production mostly just stays out of the way, allowing full focus on the lyrics and vocals.

Given that, my qualms aren’t really problems that I have with the track. Some songs are just better suited as light album tracks that offer breathing room between the bigger moments. You Know What is exactly that, and there’s nothing wrong with it. The song sets out what it wants to do, and it succeeds. However, I would love to see some more ambition when it comes to the upcoming full album.

 Hooks  6
 Production  5
 Longevity 6
 Bias  5
 RATING  5.5


2 thoughts on “Kim Jaejoong – You Know What?

  1. This is the first time I heard people saying Jaejoong’s songs as “light”. Most people think his songs in his solo albums are to different/difficult to be popular among pop fans. I guess you never really heard his solo albums. Have you heard “One Kiss” for example? No one ever dared to call that epic orchestral rock song as light. That song has gained numerous praises from serious music critics. Maybe you should do more research before doing a review.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for commenting! Obviously, music and reviews are very subjective (that’s why this site is called what it is), but I never said that his songs were “light.” In fact, being familiar with his work, I’d agree that more often than not, the material is dense, dark and complex. But for me personally, I find it a bit lightweight (and maybe that’s not the best choice of words) in the sense that none of his albums have made much of a lasting impact on me, even though I’m drawn to his solo material and really want to like it more than I do. It’s hard to describe. I guess I’m just expecting it to knock me out, given his pedigree, and instead it all kind of melds into one sound without the melodic heft I’m looking for, even with the musical diversity he displays (particularly on WWW). It’s probably a case of unfair expectations. And who knows… maybe I’ll eventually come around to it.

    That’s a lot of explanation to say that, in the end, we’ll have to agree to disagree, which is totally fine. Please rest assured that I try my best to know my facts and history, and my writing is a window to my personal thoughts about a song or artist… not the be-all-and-end-all verdict that everyone needs to agree with.

    Liked by 1 person

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