Review

Buried Treasure: U-Know (Yunho of TVXQ) – Blue Jeans

Most of the time, a k-pop group’s title track is the best song on their album. But, sometimes b-sides deserve recognition too. In the singles-oriented world of K-pop, I want to spotlight some of these buried treasures and give them the props they deserve.


As expected, Yunho’s solo album is a very strong body of work. With only one ballad tacked on at the end, it’s also a relentlessly uptempo dance album. Apart from the single, the marquee track is certainly Swing, which pairs him with BFF (and K-pop royalty) BoA for a dream-duet. But as good as that song is, I’m partial to the funky Blue Jeans, which would have made a great single.

Borrowing liberally from Kiss-era Prince, Blue Jeans is built on an irresistible groove. It’s a track composed almost entirely of percussion, offering a heavy stomp augmented with funk guitar and playful backing vocals. Yet, it never feels beholden to a lockstep structure. There’s a sense of improvisation to the production. The instrumental ebbs and flows, guided by Yunho’s expressive vocal. He’s not a power-belter, but his performance relies on something even more important. Like so many of my favorite artists (Janet and Michael Jackson, in particular), he has the ability to infuse a melody with undeniable rhythm. Blue Jeans could have easily been performed in more of a straight-laced way, but his sneering, sleazy delivery transforms it into something much more memorable. The variety of textures keeps the track compelling throughout, and I bet there’s some dynamite choreography to go along with it. Hopefully, we’ll get a performance as part of his current promotions.

 Hooks 8
 Production 9
 Longevity 9
 Bias 9
 RATING 8.75

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8 thoughts on “Buried Treasure: U-Know (Yunho of TVXQ) – Blue Jeans

  1. i’ve been listening to Yunho’s solo album nonstop these past few days, and was lowkey betting that you’d do a Buried Treasure on one of them, even without anyone asking– and i was right!!! although i would not have been able to predict which one you would’ve chosen to highlight, since each song is my favorite, depending on which speakers/headphones i’m using hahaha

    it’s really early to be asking this already, and i know you’re tougher on mini albums/EPs in this aspect, but how well is True Colors ranking for you, album-wise?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really liked this. THIS is why I’m now reading reviews for male artists. I’m woefully lacking with this side of the K-Pop coin.

    P.S. Thank you for making this post so quickly after your review of Lay’s trip and fall down two stories of cement steps. After seeing “Honey”, my brain needed something to wash the horrible taste out of it.

    Like

  3. Yays. Was curious which track you would pick for Buried Treasure. His album IS a solid pop stuff. So happy that he does not disappoint at all 😀

    Like

  4. Pingback: Top K-Pop Albums of 2019 (So Far) | The Bias List // K-Pop Reviews & Discussion

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