Yoon Jisung has made a quick turnaround with his second release after the disbandment of Wanna One. Because of his age, Jisung must begin serving his mandatory military conscription next month, which doesn’t leave much time to develop a solo career. It was definitely smart to strike while the iron is hot. I just wish he stretched himself beyond the kind of ballads most would expect from him.
To listen to the members of Wanna One on their own, you might think that all the guys are capable of is drowsy mid-tempos. I get that these kind of songs are probably easier to prepare for on short notice, but it’s hard to believe that all of these superstars-to-be actually want to launch their careers with such boring material. Where is the ambition? I’ll Be There (너의 페이지) is essentially In The Rain part two, though it manages to be even less interesting.
Jisung has a fine voice for ballads, but I’ll Be There’s gentle guitar strum doesn’t give him much to do. The song is insipidly pleasant, as if it’s terrified of painting outside the lines. The verses blend into the chorus with little change in intensity or structure, relying on Jisung’s amiable tone to get them across the finish line. There’s a lot of layering going on in the arrangement, which gives the track a wispiness that suits the season. It doesn’t suit me, though. I can’t imagine listening to this as anything but background music.
OK, I get it, not your style. I would have bene more generous – maybe 7 for hooks.
He has a dime-a-dozen kpop voice, breathy tenor. No lower register. Can hit a note that his fans think is great, but really is just par for the tenor course. Its the kind of midtempo song that the dime-a-dozen kpop group leader releases for their solo releases. Its popularity will depend completely on the group fandom size, in this case the Wannables who are all young enough to be my kids and who have moved onto TXT or whatever the kids are listening to these days.
Bright spot: I think the producers do a nice job with layering the harmonies in the chorus. And hey, at least it doesn’t have a jarring rap section in the bridge. Also, as a bonus, youtube very helpfully autoplayed Day6 “days gone by” right afterwards – sweet baby jesus I love that song. (all _that_ song is missing is a sax solo, and then it could be like a Hooters or Glass Tiger or Mr Mister song.)
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