[Review] When We Are Us – Super Junior KRY

Another Monday release that I need to review. I think there is one more after this one, but I will hold that for tomorrow. Today’s focus will be on Super Junior K.R.Y, which is a subunit of Super Junior’s main vocalists – Kyuhyun, Ryeowook and Yesung. The unit made its debut back in 2006 with The One I Love and we last saw the three promote as a unit in 2015 with the release of the Japanese single, Join Hands. On Monday, the unit made their grand return with When We Are Us and their first ever mini-album of the same name. It is said that this comeback is the start of the many Super Junior activities we will see this year as they celebrate 15 years in the Korean music industry.

As Super Junior K.R.Y is made of main vocalists, it makes the most sense for the unit to go with songs that focuses on their vocals. And as I have stated a lot recently, the most typical way to do this is through a ballad. With that statement, you can tell that When We Are Us is a ballad, singing about longing for a loved one. It feels and sounds like your typical ballad, with those swaying melodies that I always enjoy in ballads and a beautiful instrumental made of the classical piano and strings. Vocally, I don’t think it is worth pointing how breathtaking they sound (FYI, they do sound amazing, as one would expect). They have already showed us long time fans and listeners of KPOP their vocal abilities through Super Junior activities and more recently through their solo endeavours. As for which section caught my attention, I didn’t find anything that memorable to talk about as it is that typical ballad. But as the song progresses towards its peak in the bridge, the song got very interesting very quickly. Sadly, it was brief but that is what you expect from the peak of the song. Here, the soaring vocals are layered on top of each other, before ending with high note harmony with all three members. The ad-libs that follow, along with the final set of harmonies ties the song together nicely. Overall, it is still a nice ballad. Just very typical in a nutshell.

I think I have mentioned this before. But Super Junior is such a senior group that they are well respected by fans and other artists that come after them. And with that mentality that their fans will continue to support them nonetheless, the music video can be dry as a bone. This is what we are experiencing here. Aside from some artsy shots with TVs positioned around them, the sets were incredibly lackluster. While I assume the swimming pool set was meant to offset the darker scenes of the member’s closeup shots and go hand-in-hand with their lyrics (i.e. references to the colour blue and Summer), I can’t help but note how empty it felt. I am not expecting flashing lights and club scenes to fill up the space, but there are many successful ballad music videos with a lot more substance within them.

Song – 7/10
Music Video – 6/10
Overall Rating – 6.6/10

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