[Album Review] Alone (1st Mini Album) – Sistar

For this week’s ‘Past Album’ Review, I have decided to go with another disbanded group. Sistar, who used to be a part of Starship Entertainment, made their debut back in 2010 and disbanded after 7 years in 2017. One of their most iconic tracks ever is Alone and it is also the name of the mini-album that I wish to review today. It was released back in 2012 and was quickly followed up with their Loving U promotions From memory, Sistar caused a stir for their very sexy comeback, outfit and dance back in 2012. Do expect a lot more Sistar album reviews coming your way in the future, as I have a lot of albums from the group to review (a gold mine, if you ask me!). So let’s start things off today! (As per previous reviews, I have omitted the intro track, Come Closer, from my review).

Alone Album Cover

2. Alone (나 혼자) (Title Track) – Since its release in 2012, the track has definitely grown on me. Hence, I have decided to bump the review score up to 8/10 (from 7.6/10). A lot of my thoughts regarding the song was very elementary. I find the song very enjoyable now and am very impressed with the many elements within the song. I just don’t think it is as great as their more recent Summer releases before disbandment.  Click here to read the  2012 review for Alone. (8/10)

3. No Mercy – When you look back at Sistar’s discography, No Mercy is a pretty good taste to it. It is a normal pop song that uses electronic-based instrumentation. We hear something similar later but what sets this song part is that there is less autotune. Yeah, Dasom and Bora still have autotune but Soyou manages to flourish in this song alongside Hyorin, which was very nice. I enjoyed Bora’s rap-chant section in the bridge, so clearly not all autotune is bad. I thought it brought a dynamic feel to the song. I also thought the chorus, while it was standard, did a good job of throwing more energy into the song and gives it a memorable melody. (8/10)

4. Lead Me – To me, I think this was the first Sistar side-track that I basically fell in love with at the time of its release. I think it was because we got to hear more of the other members (despite Hyolyn still getting the majority of the song). But also I felt that it was very well-polished and easy on the ears. Actually, I think the more correct word is calming. Not only that but the vocals from each member were on point. I thought Bora’s rap was equally as good and I like the intensity she gave the song through her rap section. I also like Hyolyn’s ad-libs throughout the end of the song, which really added a nice level of appeal for me. (9/10)

5. Girls On Top (널 사랑하겠어)Girls On Top has a funky electronic sound, giving it a somewhat retro vibe to it. Other than that, it is a typical pop song, so it similar to No Mercy. And they keep the electronic theme going by autotuning the vocals. It is fitting, so I didn’t mind too much of it. But my issue is that all the members were heavily autotuned, giving off the impression that they cannot sing. Obviously, Hyolyn is an exception and she was only autotuned (but still not to the degree of the other members) at the start of the song. Her vocals during the chorus were pretty much ‘untouched’. I did like the chorus as she managed to bring a level of fierceness to the song. But since the album is very Hyolyn dominant, I wanted more of the other members to shine. (7.5/10)

6. I Choose To Love You (Hyolyn Solo) – When I say that the album is Hyolyn dominant, I meant it. The album features her solo single, I Choose To Love You, which is an OST track for How To Love Smart 2 (according to Wikipedia). The song is a ballad and it has a nice flowy melody. Actually, if I remember correctly, this is the very song that introduced me to Hyolyn and her group. Her vocals bring a sense of warmness and feel fitting for a cold day. As much as I want the other members to stand out, this song does an excellent job of showcasing Hyolyn’s vocals for the audience. (8/10)

Overall Album Rating – 8/10

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