Review Summary: “Girls’ Generation” was great, but “The Boys” is fantastic.
Korea is centuries ahead of us in terms of pop music, and it’s no surprise. Like the arduous process of becoming a full-fledged Jedi, Koreans develop their skill sets at a very early age, and continue to work on them for the rest of their lives. Taken in by star making companies, the path to becoming a pop star is ridiculous. Their lyrics, their dance moves, their music, their clothing styles, even their very lives are controlled. You can never call in sick, quitting is not an option, even if your entire body is sore from 10 hours (or more) of dance practice every day, the show must go on. Now let’s stop for a second. The way I have described Korea’s pop industry makes it seem as if it is some kind of hell, but if you asked the pop artists what they thought about it, they’d probably defend their producers’ actions. It may seem crazy, but really, it’s just their culture, and they’re completely used to it. The basic point that you can take from all this information is that Koreans have pop down to a science, and therefore, they are very good at it.
Although The Boys
often borrows from old styles of pop music, it still feels contemporary and relevant. They are making a name for themselves now, generally dumping their electronic side, allowing for musical growth. Unlike Girls’ Generation
with its rude bass beats and forgettable synths, The Boys
is surprisingly minimalistic. Pop is often at its best when simple, and this album proves it. What’s great about this direction is that the girls’ voices are highlighted, and they just happen to be giving their best vocal performances yet. As a result, the music is classier, catchier, and cuter. However, despite the group’s newfound minimalism, their edge is still intact, which is proven by sensual sensations like ‘The Boys’, ‘Trick’, ‘Oscar’, and ‘Top Secret’. A highlight, of course, being their single, ‘The Boys’, a foot-stomping tune which showcases the group’s intention, “b-bring the boys out!”
‘Say Yes’ begins with one of the girls exploding in happiness, “boy, I see you walking by every day *giggles*, so just stop in the name of love and just say yes”. As evident by only that line, Girls’ Generation
is driven by the kind of innocence and cuteness that either makes you sick to the stomach, or leaves you craving for more. You’d expect to hear this music in kiddy shows, children’s musicals, and awful commercials, but never in a full album. However, let the naysayers whimper and vomit silently in the corner, because the music happens to be extremely fun. In fact, the album is so good that every song is worthy of becoming a single. Like their previous album, The Boys
is completely stuffed with well-written and engaging material, which is what every movie sequel strives to be but often fails (ex. the Transformers film series). Unless this type of music just isn’t your thing, I see no reason to not enjoy this album.