[Album] Girls’ Generation – Girls’ Generation

Girls’ Generation is the self-titled first album released by Girls’ Generation. The title track was used as the promotional song and Kissing you was also used to promote it. The album also includes two songs from their first single. The album proved to be a success and helped establish the group’s fanbase.

girlsgeneration

Released: November 1, 2007
1. Girls’ Generation (소녀시대)
2. Ooh La-La!
3. Baby Baby
4. Complete
5. Kissing you
6. Merry-go-round
7. Tears (그대를 부르면)
8. Tinkerbell
9. 7989
10. Honey (소원)
11. Into the New World (다시 만난 세계)

The title track opens the album and it opens it with a blast. A remake of Lee Seung Chul’s 80’s hit, Girls’ Generation is definitely changed up from the original as it features a dance beat, a blast of sparkling synths and some cuter vocals. It’s still one of my favourite songs from the group because it has a lot of energy in the verses, a nice calming pre-chorus and a powerful electric guitar based chorus. It’s a great song and a great way to start things off.

It’s really odd that things go the bubblegum pop direction with Ooh La-La!, as here we replace the electric guitar for some cute synths and a bouncy beat. It’s not a bad song, but it’s still a bit juvenile for the group. They did cuter pop tunes on the first single, but this just takes things even far in that direction. The good thing about the song is that it has a great melody and it’s still quite catchy. It reminds me of late 90’s pop music like S Club 7.

Baby Baby is another bubblegum pop tune, but it isn’t as upbeat. I actually prefer this one over the last song because the harmonies are much stronger and the chorus is nicely flushed out. It’s not quite in your face, but still has a nice innocence to it that keeps the flow of the album. The girls also sound great and it feels like all the girls’ vocals fit this song. Not the strongest tune, but its a pretty piece.

Complete is the album’s first ballad and it’s a pretty gentle pop tune. The verses are not that great though as the melody just sort of drags on. I feel like this part would benefit being sped up a bit. Luckily, the chorus is quite beautiful. It’s sung in unison like a lot of the choruses on here and the melody works wonderfully with them all blended together. It’s simple and sweet and that ending with Taeyeon doing riffs and runs is stunning.

Kissing you is a return of the saccharine pop sound like Ooh La-La!, but this one feels a lot more focused in its delivery. The music is quite sweet and features a lot synths, but it also has a pretty cool guitar that lays underneath. The melody is quite nice and its fun to sing along to. It’s one of the girls catchiest songs, especially in their earlier days.

Merry-go-round keeps the innocence, but slows things down a bit and adds a stronger beat. I really enjoy this song and its one of my favourites of the album because the chorus has some great harmonies. The only odd parts of the strange jumps in pitch from the verses to the chorus and back. Still, it’s a good song even though it blends a bit with the other tunes on here.

Tears is another ballad, but we finally get something a bit more mature and dramatic. The song sounds like your usual K-Pop ballad with your haunting strings and R&B beat. It’s probably the weakest song for me at this point. The verses are decent, but there is something off about the chorus with the vocal editing and the melody.

Tinkerbell returns us to the bubblegum pop sound and while its another slower tune, it is definitely better than the last one. My only problem is that this song sounds so much like Merry-go-round for me that it becomes hard to differentiate them, although the melody here is a bit weaker. It’s cute, but isn’t as strong.

7989 is a duet between Taeyeon and H.O.T.’s Kangta and references their birth years. Kangta has a really smooth voice and is great for this light R&B elements here. Taeyeon also has a great voice that suits many genres. Unfortunately, this song just isn’t my cup of tea. It’s more fitting for a coffeehouse and doesn’t have quite a lot of energy to it. I don’t really like the arrangement and I’m not a fan of the melody either. Not for me.

Honey is actually “Perfect for You” from their first single but renamed. This is another bubblegum pop song and was the archetype for many of the other songs on the album, but this is one of the my favourites as I love the music with its touches of guitar and great harmonies. It’s sweet.

The album ends on a high note with Into the New World, which is still my favourite song from the group. It’s powerful in both its music and lyrics and I love the energy it has. It also gives me a lot of nostalgia from the days they debuted and when I first got into them. It’s the album’s best song and they haven’t done anything to top this yet. Everything from the dance beat to the melody sung in unison is just so strong.


Overall: This is a solid debut album. I think part of that is the fact that I know this album so well and I used to play it so much ten years ago, but there are some really good tracks on here. The majority of the album has great production and even if a lot of songs sound similar, there are several quality tunes. The melodies are also great and I love how the majority of the songs have their choruses sung in unison. It’s a nice change from the usual K-Pop style of having choruses sung solo as it adds some nice harmonies.

A-

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[Digital Single] Girls’ Generation – Into the New World (Remix)

Into the New World (Remix) is the first digital single released by Girls’ Generation.

intothenewworldremix
Released: September 13, 2007
1. Into the New World (Club Mix) (다시 만난 세계)

Into the New World (Club Mix) is a more “powerful” version of the original. The music is replaced with an electronic beat and a barrage of synths. It is an interesting twist on the original, but I think the main problem with this one is that it loses that inspirational touch that the original has. The melody just doesn’t quite fit this kind of music and while I love the electronic/rock edge of the chorus, it just feels overpowering and doesn’t quite let the melody breathe.


Overall: This is definitely different from the original and while it isn’t horrible, it just doesn’t match that feeling that the original gives. A large part of this songs longevity is the fact that it sounds inspiring and here, the melody just gets bogged down by synths. It loses its touch.

B

[Single] Girls’ Generation – Into the New World

Girls’ Generation debuted in 2007 and initially found moderate success. It wasn’t really until their 2009 hit song, Gee, that the group really became a household name. Since then, the group has become the most well-known K-Pop group and has broken many records and set many trends. Into the New World is the group’s debut single.

intothenewworld
Released: August 2, 2007
1. Into the New World (다시 만난 세계)
2. Beginning
3. Perfect for You (소원)
4. Into the New World (Instrumental)

When Into the New World dropped in 2007, I was stunned. After anticipating their debut, the group blew away my expectations with this gorgeous and uplifting dance/pop tune. The powerful beat, memorable melody and lush harmonies all blend together really well with the inspiring lyrics. I love how the girls sing in unison during the chorus because it really helps to elevate the song. The ending with Taeyeon and Jessica belting it out is easily the best section of the song. It’s still my favourite song by the group.

Beginning brings a bit of country and rock to things and it isn’t what I expected from the group. While I think it is the weakest song on the single, I love that it does bring something a bit different. I just wish the chorus had more impact as the vocals are edited in a way that it sort of loses the attitude of the verses. It’s a decent tune though.

Perfect for You is a midtempo bubblegum pop song and I really like it. It’s a sweet tune and is definitely something that the group did best in their early days. The verses are pretty short, which helps bring out that lush chorus. The melody does seem to have a way of being stuck in your head and the girls all sound pretty nice here.


Overall: This single is a pretty solid release and a great debut from the group. The title track is just insane and in my opinion, the group’s best song. The B-sides aren’t as memorable, but they do have their charm and help to bring a bit of diversity to the single’s sound.

A