[Album Review] True Colors (1st Mini Album) – Yunho (TVXQ)

It has been a long time coming for Yunho, who made his debut in the KPOP industry back in 2003. But on June 12 (exactly one month ago), Yunho made his solo debut with his first solo mini-album. This means that he didn’t get to formally promote a solo album for over 16 years since his debut, which is quite a long time for an established artist like Yunho. The title of the album is True Colors and it features Follow (Yunho’s title track which was also released on the same day), alongside 5 other tracks. Let’s see what I thought the album below!

True Colors Album Cover

1..Follow (Title Track)Click here for the full review for Follow. (7/10)

2. Blue Jeans – Continuing on with the intensity of Follow is Blue Jeans. In fact, I think Blue Jeans does one better, in terms of intensity. I found the instrumental to be unique and interesting. It felt like a club track but there was more to it. A bit of groove, a bit of R&B and a bit of colour. I enjoyed it. But the main showstopper from the track is his vocals. There were moments that almost felt like he was growling and showcasing a wilder side to his normal vocals. While I did have an itching feeling that there was a possible mismatch between the style choices between his vocals and instrumentation, the more I listen to the track the more the feeling is reduced. They somehow effortlessly come together, with the instrumental sounding like it moulded around the vocals very well. (9/10)

3. Swing (ft. BoA)Swing opts for a consistent dance track sound that you could hear while in a club and is a lot more direct (in terms of complexity). There isn’t anything wrong with this, however, as it does serve as a good breather after two very dynamically intense tracks. I really like the pulsing instrumental in Swing, which really drives that dance club factor I mentioned initially. Both Yunho and BoA do a nice job on the vocal front. Interestingly, they don’t push themselves vocally, which keeps the song consistent. Though I am not sure how this song would fair with repetitive listens (i.e. the consistency could really dry up the song). I think a more dynamic dance break following the choruses could have solved this potential issue. Nonetheless, I do think it is a good track and definitely a collaboration I like to see on stage. (8/10)

4. Hit Me Up (불러) (ft. Giriboy) – I am slowly starting to see a pattern in terms of the energy of the songs on the album. The first two songs are intense. The last two songs are on the paced side of the spectrum. This leaves Swing and Hit Me Up situated along the imaginary spectrum set by the albums track list. And I think listening to Hit Me Up confirms this. It is a pop track with very little to offer. I do have some negative comments about it. I felt like the track was hovering in a slightly awkward position. The instrumental didn’t feel like it had a strong backing, which leads to this ‘hovering’ analogy. Yunho’s vocals were weak and Giriboy’s rapping was over excessively laced with autotune. I did, however, think Giriboy’s inserts throughout the song helped build the song but it wasn’t enough to help define it. (6/10)

5. Why (왜)Why is a jazzy style of R&B that sounds so incredibly smooth. Despite the smoothness, there is a bit of texture going on within the song’s instrumental to create a rather aesthetic atmosphere. This makes the song quite appealing, which is expected when it comes to my taste in music. Going back to my comments in Hit Me Up, this is the start of the slower or more paced side of the album. The song doesn’t really pick up, keeping its tempo throughout the 3:45 minute track. Yunho’s vocals were also another appealing point of the track. They were showcased and through his vocals, Yunho managed to put forward a sensual atmosphere, which I think any of his fans would really enjoy. (8/10)

6. Change The World – Ending the album is a ballad. Change The World sings about hope, which was my first thought about the song’s potential direction, as I had gotten it mixed up with the classic Heal The World. It stresses the message that we are all equal and can make a change in the world. It is a good ballad with an important message that does a nice job of putting Yunho’s vocals forward. I like how it progressed, with Yunho starting alone and everyone coming in together towards the end. It wraps the song up nicely and the album, as well. (8/10)

Overall Album Rating – 7.6/10

True Colors Teaser Image

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