I Did It for Love
Look Who’s Talking
Eat You Up
Girls On Top
The album starts off with the infectious I Did It for Love. This is a pretty addicting track and a nice overall start to the album. The arrangement was tech’d to death, but suitably so and it certainly has enough going for it to get your body moving and keep it moving. BoA’s vocals were obviously vocodered, but she pulled it off I really liked how assertive she sounded, almost bitter in a sense. I didn’t too much like Sean Garret’s part he sounded like a girl in my opinion, but luckily his small part doesn’t detract. The chorus is definitely the high light.
The next track on the album is the synthy Energetic. This track pretty much plays like the previous, only difference is the tech’d arrangement has been turned up a notch and BoA’s vocals are a lot more hard-hitting. This track isn’t bad and I can certainly see why people would enjoy it, but to me its pretty not interesting. The whole approach seems very played out and lame.
The next track on the album is the relate-able Did Ya. I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but I must give BoA her props for this track, there is nothing I like more than a tune about self-empowerment. The arrangement is rather cliche, I honestly don’t care for it, because it does nothing interesting and sounds like someone blowing air through a pipe or something. I did however like BoA’s vocals, not a trace of Engrish and she gave a strong vocal performance, so I was rather surprised by that. This song makes me think of Rihanna’s ‘last time’ song and I’m feeling it.
The next track on the album continues the tech with Look Who’s Talking. I first heard this song like pretty much everyone else during a live and I remember thinking she should have released this instead of ‘eat you up’ because its more in your face and stable. The arrangement is nothing different, but I did like the heavy static during the ‘me, me, me’ parts of the chorus. BoA’s vocals were once again very consistent and strong, which is just blowing my mind at this point. This track seems oddly short for some reason, but it does get its point across. It reminds me of her ‘i don’t give a damn’ song off her fourth korean album, kudos.
The next track on the album is the first single Eat You Up. This song, goodness. I still think its stupid, but its certainly catchy. BoA’s Engrish is rather glaring in this, which I found strange, because I hardly noticed it in the previous tracks. The arrangement is pretty addicting, I like. I don’t know, maybe this song is growing on me, or maybe I’m losing my mind…
The next track on the album is Obsessed. This song is interesting, I actually found myself liking it a bit. The arrangement is the typical techno, electronica fare, but it managed to play nice and hold my attention. I kind a really liked BoA’s vocal in this, pretty smooth. The chorus is the best part.
The next track on the album is the rather out of character Touched. I’m nearly speechless, this is so unlike BoA, but I think I like it anyways. The arrangement is same, but its very hard-hitting, despite the fact that it does nothing. BoA does not sound like BoA, I’m actually having a hard time believing its actually her singing this and not someone else. I mean I didn’t notice any Engrish and her vocal performance was so straight to the point and aggressive that I actually can’t not like this song… and its pretty lame to me. I mean I guess I just find it sexy in a non sexy way, if that makes any sense.
The next track on the album is the semi dark Scream. I’m not surprised by the direction in which this song went, very fitting. The arrangement is pretty interesting, gives one the impression of conflicted emotions and white flashing on and off in the darkness. BoA’s vocals are edged with a confidence that I like and are rather powerful in this track. I’m not sure if I really like this, but I do like the flow and the chorus.
The next track on the album is the remake of Girls On Top. It appears that BoA and Utada were both thinking the same thing: ‘lets take one of our best and most well-known songs and turn them into crappy English versions of there originals’ I’ll admit, this is a far cry more better than Hikki’s English version of ‘automatic’ but it still sucks. The arrangement is the same, but it sounds underwhelming compared to the fire of the original. BoA harps on about wanting to be herself and how she’s going to be herself and by the end I’m thinking, ‘who cares?’ you’ve never sung techno before, so just like everyone else all of sudden you decide to jump on the techno bandwagon and devote your entire first English album to it. Yeah, way to be yourself BoA. Pass.
The second to last track on the album is the tired Dress Off. This song is lame, simply lame. The arrangement is forgettable and sounds like some throwaway beat from Britney’s Circus album. Ah, speaking of Britney why does this song seem to be channeling her? I kept thinking of Britney singing ‘Don’t Cha’ from the Pussycat Dolls. I can’t even pretend to like this song, mostly because it doesn’t sound like BoA at all. I stopped listening at the ‘want to take my dress off’ part. How lame is that? Boo.
The last track on the album is Hypnotic Dancefloor. This isn’t a bad song, but I just realized while listening to it that I just didn’t really care how hypnotic the dance floor is. The arrangement was pretty same, though I did think the whole techno snap and clap beat was odd. BoA’s vocals are pretty psuedo sexual, she did a decent job. I don’t know this is an all right ending to the album, but it just seemed pretty stale and cliche to me… kind a like this whole album.
Rating: * star
BoA’s first English album BoA went pretty much in the direction I thought it would, I’m really not surprised that she decided to dedicate her entire first English venture to techno music and Britney Spears. I’m not being bias in the least, though I may come across as such. This album is as average as it gets, nothing more and nothing less. The beats are all pretty much the same, just tweaked to fit the flow of the songs. I found it odd that BoA’s Engrish was so absent yet ‘eat you up’ stands out as a glaring beacon of light. I mean it just doesn’t add up; either that’s one hell of a vocoder or there’s someone else singing these songs, because there’s no way her English can get so good in such a short period of time and if it has, my mistake. The songs are all pretty hit or miss and the only ones that I care for are ‘i did it for love’, ‘did ya’ and ‘look who’s talking’, the rest are as forgettable and throwaway as it gets, even if I did like those other three songs. I don’t get why Utada’s album got so much hate and people seem to be praising this, if you ask me BoA went down the same route Utada did in terms of music: BoA picked the genre that everyone seems to be interested in at the moment an ran with it, only difference is hers is a bit more mainstream and appealing. I don’t think BoA’s album is better than Utada’s in the least, Utada’s English album was just as average, but a lot more satisfying. If you ask me the sellout is BoA, not Utada. Utada’s been doing rnb since the beginning, how is she selling out doing the very genre of music that jump started her career? I don’t get that part. I’m not surprised that people enjoyed this a lot more than Hikki’s English album, its to be expected. Me? I’m with Utada on this one.