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Soulful, touching, funky and emotional, these are the words that pop into my head whenever I listen to SNSD Taeyeon’s debut solo mini album! Taeyeon is known as the best vocalist in SNSD and now she finally has the chance to show off her talent as a solo artist. That doesn’t mean she left her beloved group, but this does gives her the opportunity to be on her own.

This album has a very different vibe from her SNSD music, it appears more mature!  Taeyeon is embracing her talent and emerging fresh out of her SNSD persona. This is refreshing and different from the cutesy image the Korean audience usually expects from Korean artists/idols.  Taeyeon is not a teenage idol anymore and now she is showcasing a sassier side of her musical talent. This album is titled “I” and it consists of six singles:

1. I – featuring Verbal Jint

2. U R

3. Gemini

4. Stress

5. Farewell 

6. I – Instrumental Version

The “I” album already triumphed in all digital charts in Korea, topped iTunes main album charts in 12 Asian countries and also reached top 10 in iTunes main album charts in countries like Canada, Sweden, Hungary, New Zealand, and USA. This makes it 23 countries where the album reached top 10 on iTunes main album charts. This is quite an achievement for a recent foreign album release. The genres of this album are mainly ballads, and a little bit of R&B!

Each song from this album is unique and meaningful, her debut single “I” featuring Verbal Jint is powerful and uplifting. The music video for this single is shot in beautiful New Zealand, it also presents two sides of Taeyeon, her carefree side and the her other self that seems to be stuck in a rut and unhappy. In the end, Taeyeon breaks free and goes to meet her old carefree self. This is an inspiring song showing how Taeyeon must have felt in the music industry and losing sight of her true self. There are other wonderful ballads from this album such as “U R” and “Gemini”, her voice really shines through and some aspect of her vocal work has slight similarities to Mariah Carey. A perfect example of this is in her song “Gemini”, her vocal range shifts, softly hitting those high notes.

Shifting away from her ballads, Taeyeon’s song “Stress” is the only song with a more upbeat rhythm, a sassy song about a breakup, in the chorus she sings “You got me smokin’ cigarettes , I’m in stress baby” . I don’t know how this part of the lyrics will be perceived by the public/fans, but I love it and it shows a more mature side of Taeyeon. It is about time the cutesy image is replaced with an adult persona, let’s face it, she is twenty seven now, not seventeen anymore.

I imagine listening to this album on a road trip, the songs are soothing and enjoyable! If you want something upbeat, listen to “Stress”, if you are in the mood for a soulful song “U R” is the one for you. Download the new album now and you will experience music heaven!

Thanks again for reading my album review, please come again and see you soon!

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