It is time for another album review! This particular post is for Kang Daniel’s fourth mini-album, Yellow, which was released exactly two months ago (way back in April!). The album features both the title track, Antidote, and the pre-release track, PARANOIA. In addition to these two tracks, there are three other new songs on the mini-album (which I have a lot of thoughts about – whether it is good or bad, continue reading to find out!). Yellow also wraps up Kang Daniel’s color series, with previous album’s titled after the three colours – Cyan, Magenta and Yellow (this album). It will be interesting to see and hear where Kang Daniel would go from here, especially after a substantial and thought provoking (towards the end) trilogy, like this one. But until then, here is my album review for Yellow!
1. Digital – Just from the loaded tone of album’s opening track, you can tell that Kang Daniel has brought a lot of deep, dark and emotional thought to the song. And I think Digital sets up the album extremely well, as these deep and dark thoughts are carried throughout the album. Digital talks about the experiences of invisible bullies on the internet, who are super critical of what he does, and spread lies and false rumors about the idol. For the song, I really enjoyed the alternative rock profile the song taps into. I really like the deep notes in the instrumental, which really creates that dark atmosphere in which the song thrives on. His vocals are quite good, and I particularly liked how memorable the ‘So critical, enemies invisible’ line ended up being. The song also tethers on the border of being retro, but never really stepping into that domain. Altogether, Digital reminds me of Blinding Lights, which was one of the best releases from last year. (9/10)
2. PARANOIA (Pre-release Track) – Click here to read the full review for PARANOIA. (9/10)
3. Misunderstood (ft. Omega Sapien) – Misunderstood opened up with a very sinister feeling. I felt the instrumental was like a blur. And I mean that in a good way. I think it works extremely well with the lyrics, which are all about pretending to be okay but as a result ends up with Kang Daniel being misunderstood. And I feel that is because of his status within the KPOP industry. He has to be ‘okay’, or else it would be unprofessional (which is completely upsetting, but that that is the reality of his industry). Misunderstood‘s lo-fi atmosphere remained as the common thread throughout the song, but the instrumentation ends up changing as the song progresses. At the start, we get deep thumping that looms in the background. We then get light taps in the first chorus, a tempo pick up for Omega Sapien’s featuring sequence (who worked really well into the song), followed up by what felt like a slow rock vibe to the song, before returning to the likes of the first verse. It is an interesting and impactful mix. (8/10)
4. Antidote (Title Track) – Click here to read the full review for Antidote. (8/10)
5. Save U (ft. Wonstein) – Save U is my pick for best song on this album. Firstly, it is a warm song following all of the darkness that preceded this song. The messages of reassurance that he will be there and that these thoughts would all pass are very emotive and powerful. Secondly, Kang Daniel sounds so amazing in this song. He channels all his emotions and deep thoughts into this song in a manner that doesn’t overwhelm you in any manner. The harmonization throughout the song is so nice as well. Thirdly, I really like the electronic instrumental we get. It works really well and compliments both the message and Kang Daniel. Fourthly, Wonstein was a great addition to the song, adding a different dynamic that makes the song more interesting. I am not a fan of his ‘Save U’ interjections earlier in the song, but I think I can overlook that minor element. But everything else he does balances out this track nicely. (10/10)
Overall Album Rating – 9/10