The short of it: Don’t be fooled by what to my mind is horrible make-up, this is a great album. It’ll sound a bit (though really just a bit) like 1:59pm; nevertheless it still works. They’ve mastered the club dance beat, creating the climaxes perfectly, and they’ve mastered the sweet slow song. Though I hesitate to say this, it’s almost as if the album is too short.
Take-a-fourth: I’ll Be Back \ 니가 나를 떠나도 (Even If You Leave Me) \ I Can’t
Tracklist: 1. Still 2. I’ll Be Back 3. 니가 나를 떠나도 (Even If You Leave Me) 4. I Can’t 5. I Know 6. Dance 2night 7. I’ll Be Back – Club mix
There have been extended plays on “I’ll be Back,” “I Can’t”, and “니가 나를 떠나도 (Even If You Leave Me)” on my account, so I’ll get to them first. I think “I’ll be Back” might indeed be the best song in the album. It’s incredibly dynamic. Take for example how Junsu and Junho can create a chorus such as the one in this song. I’d be perfectly content with either of their two powerful vocals, that they carry it together, meshing different riffing and voice quality, well that;s just awesome. Or even with the composition of the song, there’s emotive effect for example when the consistent fast beats come down (even silently) to a slow during the stanzas (and then to key-in Wooyoung for that too!). It’s not the perfect song though. I’ll give you that Chansung’s improved, but I’ll say it, I think I need more. His voice is still too nasally and effort-full, and when you have to sing the part of the song he sings, and with the comparison the Jun’s bring as your power vocalists, and Wooyoung proving himself able to hold a song, you need to step up even more. As for the rapping, I think it’s up to par; Nichkhun comes across stronger in this song, because it feels like his rapping has personality, whereas I’m not sure Taecyeon’s does. All in all though, it’s a great catchy song, though I wish I had listened to it first before watching the MV (which has both good parts and bad parts in concept and choreography).
“I Can’t” and “니가 나를 떠나도 (Even If You Leave Me)” are my two favorite songs, and this surprised me since both are laid-back songs (and I usually go for the over-produced dance tracks if you guys know my taste). “I Can’t” is predominantly acoustic, and I think I like mostly everything about it, from that beat-choppy chorus, to even the laid-back rapping of Taecyeon (though a bit-lacking, it’s made great by that riffing in the background). Being slow and sweet, there really is little room to make error vocally, but somehow the song just came out great rather than mediocre. And oh-my-gosh that part after the key change, when it becomes thick, climactic, and a coming-together of riffing, guitar, falsetto and chorus, well it just hit the sweet-spot right there. “니가 나를 떠나도 (Even If You Leave Me)” is actually laid-back too if you notice, and the despite is from the sort of synthetic garnishing that might place you into thinking it’s a one of those fast-paced dance tracks. I’m a fan of the incessant fast beat plaguing the choruses, it makes it a good just-let-me-cruise song. I like that choral part after Taecyeon’s rap, and there’s something about how from there the song just abruptly brings you to an ending of a few slow silent beats with Junsu’s singular vocals.
I’ll be a bit dismissive about “I Know.” It’s mediocre in my book: it suffers from a spare chorus. The way I see it is that there’s times when one has to rely on the music and do minimal singing, especially if it’s a good sound with which you’re working. This song just isn’t one of them. “Dance 2Night” is again somewhere weird for me. I’m sufficiently annoyed by that high-pitched noise they use in the chorus, but then I like the fun vibe the song has. I’m just very ambivalent about this one. “Still”, the one-minute intro, is one that I actually appreciate. It’s “I’ll be back” Rock-Ballad version, and it’s interesting and good enough.
So my final thoughts on the album. Very interesting, and since the majority of the songs are great ones, it gets my thumbs-up (if that’s even worth anything LOL). You’ll notice growth on the parts of Wooyoung, Chansung and Nichkhun that you’ll appreciate, and consistency with the Jun’s that brings the songs out of mediocrity. I’ll have to admit I’m having problems with Taecyeon nowadays, there’s times when he’s feckless, and other times when he sound like an amateur (aaa don’t kill me). But again, Still 2:00PM is a great album, and it’s able to justify why we missed 2:00PM since their last release.