The album review that I had intended to publish yesterday is ITZY’s NOT SHY. It is also the title to their most recent title track as well! It has been over a month since the album was released, so apologies that it has taken me so long to review this mini-album. I decided to review the album during the week it was first released, yet somehow I arranged for the album review to be published this week. Right off the bat, it is a slightly interesting album. NOT SHY (the album) starts off in a familiar domain that is synonymous with the name ITZY. But as we get to the other end of the album, you might hear some different sounds. What are these ‘different sounds’? Well, you gotta find out yourself below!
1. Not Shy (Title Track) – Click here to read the full review for Not Shy. (7/10)
2. Don’t Give A What – In my review for their title track, I noted that Not Shy was missing some energy to really give it a kick. If you were confused about what I meant, just listen to Don’t Give A What. It has that energy that almost rivals Wannabe in my opinion. I love the pop rock sound that forms the basis of the track, which no doubt suits the group’s strong sound. There are super catchy hooks throughout the song that makes it a memorable track. Interestingly, it is Ryujin’s ‘Strike a Pose’ that steals my attention, despite the super powerful hooks surrounding it. The bass helps boldens the song. Overall, I think Don’t Give A What would be have the perfect alternative title track from this EP. (10/10)
3. Louder – Louder is a pretty weak track, especially following Don’t Give A What. And I was expecting great things give the song was title ‘Louder’. And I squarely place the blame on the instrumental of the track. There wasn’t much meat to it, simply a backbone that felt like there were gaps throughout it. Something with a little more heft would have been appropriate, especially if it gets you to turn up the volume higher to enjoy it. And it is a pity, as I thought the vocals throughout Louder do get louder, but it dragged down by the flawed instrumentation. (6/10)
4. iD – iD goes down the mainstream pop route, with the rhythm embedded in the instrumental reminding me of the instrumental breakdown in Wannabe. That part in their past title track has grown to be my favourite, so a reminder of that definitely appeals to me right from the start! I think the reminder is simply due to the combination of their metallic clangs (cowbells?) and their vocal/rapping melodies. Those are some good melodies and I like how they bolster up their power by singing together. I would have liked some stronger hooks to really push the song into the 10/10 range. For now, it sits slightly lower than that. (9/10)
5. SURF – SURF steps away from the heavy reliance of electronic synths and production, opting for something a little more retro. It is a nice change up to their sound on this album and SURF really highlights the group’s vocals (especially when we get into the chorus). There are falsettos and each member brings a slightly different tone to the song. I particularly like the falsetto that carries the title of the song post-chorus. The instrumental is a lot smoother, more easygoing and a lot less harsh (relative to their other songs + their usual sound). Overall, SURF was pleasant but in a definite good way. (8/10)
6. Be In Love – ITZY continues to steer away from their reliance of electronic synths and productions with Be In Love, opting this time for an acoustic pop track and my pick for this album’s hidden gem. It is an interesting sound, as it seems to merge both an upbeat pop sound with a ballad. And I give my tick of approval for the sound. But what initially steals my attention with this song is their breathy vocals at the start. I also like how the song continues to highlight their vocal potential, with that upbeat nature of the instrumental helping to bolster their vocals. The melodies were extremely pleasant, closing out this mini-album in a strong manner (just without the theatrics). (10/10)
Overall Album Rating – 8.3/10