Lim Chang Jung is an absolute juggernaut in the world of Korean ballads. His fantastic Love Again single was one of last year’s biggest hits and has enjoyed incredible longevity on the charts. Like it or not, this is the kind of sentimental music that does gangbusters in Korea, even if it may not be the most sonically (or visually) interesting. Love I’ve Done (which is an awkward literal translation of the yet-to-be officially translated 내가 저지른 사랑) has a lot to live up to. It’s already riding high on the charts, but is its quality up to par with Love Again?
Not quite. But once that soaring, emotional chorus hits, Love I’ve Done definitely sweeps you away. Lim Chang Jung has always had a unique voice — a little bit awkward at the soft parts, but undeniably affecting once he hits his stride. It’s the same here, with the verses lacking punch and sounding oddly hesitant. Love Again had a similar problem. But luckily, it turns out that this is all a build-up to that go-for-broke chorus, which acts as a perfect spotlight to show what Jung can actually do. His vocals — especially the high notes — are nothing short of breathtaking in their strength and tone.
I kind of wish the instrumentation was just as ballsy. Rather than the traditional Korean ballad we have here, I would have loved a more prominent presence of guitars, giving the track a rock flavor that would have supported Jung’s vocals even more powerfully. It makes sense to play it safe and cater to what’s been successful for him in the past, but with a voice like his, the sky’s the limit.