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Album Review: GOT7 Bring Energetic Harmony To Their Debut Studio Album 'Identify' [AUDIO]

By Adrienne Stanley | November 19, 2014 08:16 AM EST


JYP Entertainment’s powerhouse rookie group GOT7 released their first studio album on November 18. “Identify” is an eleven track album which includes the tracks “A” and “Girls, Girls, Girls” which have helped to catapult GOT7 into K-Pop fame.

GOT7 debuted in January 2014 and has been one of the most notable male groups of the year. GOT7 is in the running for the 2014 Mnet Asian Music Award for Best New Artist and has been widely recognized as artists who are leading JYP Entertainment into a new era. The group is reminiscent of 2PM and has faced off throughout the year with YG Entertainment’s WINNER, who have received comparisons to Big Bang.

On “Identify,” GOT7 plays it safe by delivering the moving R&B sound that helped to build JYP. While their first two extended plays ventured further into dance music, the primary focus of “Identify” is establishing the group’s capacity for complex vocals.

The first promotional track from the album is “Stop Stop It.” “Stop Stop It” sets the tone for “Identify,” as an album which is aiming for wider demographic. GOT7 doesn’t sound like a boy band who is just appealing to a teen audience with “Stop Stop It.” It is a song who tempo is well paced, with production that is well-rounded. Park Jin Young (J.Y. Park) is credited as the writer and producer of the song. He lives up to his nickname of “The Asian Soul” with “Stop Stop It,” as the song builds to a solid conclusion.

“Gimme” is one of the few dance tracks on “Identify.” Its incorporation of synthesizers with eighties American funk instrumentals may “Gimme” a playful song. “Gimme” evokes R&B gems like The Whispers 1987 hit “Rock Steady” with contemporary hip-hop breaks.

The soulfulness of “Gimme” is continued on “Take My Hand.” “Take My Hand” is one of the most romantic songs on “Identify,” which plays to the strong points of GOT7 that were heard on “A.” It is pure harmonization with rap interludes that do not appear to be forced but transition naturally. “Take My Hand” has the unique quality of a song which can be heard repeatedly but will not get old due to the vocal purity of the track.

“Magnetic” is a track which like “Gimme” benefits from an eighties inspired sound. “Magnetic” resembles the synth driven dance-pop which provided the strongest foundation for INFINITE and is one the gems of “Identify.”

“Just Tonight” is one of the most rap-infused R&B tracks on “Identify” which incorporates the deep sound of Jackson’s voice. Jackson has flow on the track but his appearance is gratuitous. In this sense, JYP Entertainment differentiates itself from some other K-Pop agencies in that the rapper is not necessarily the position where the weakest member appears. “Turn Up the Music” provides an opportunity for each member of the group to stand out with vocals. The song provides an excellent transition from “Just Tonight” to “Stay.”

The soulful harmonies that elevated 2PM to fame is present on the track “Stay.” “Stay” is jazzy and lends itself to a sound that is more adult contemporary than what is generally heard within K-Pop. GOT7 incorporates scat singing within the song along with hand claps to create a timeless sound.

The group continues its mature approach with “Moonlight.” “Moonlight” is richly vocalized, accompanied by mid tempo instrumentals, that are also within the smooth jazz genre. “Moonlight,” like “Stay” makes for easy listening which definitely speaks to the universal appeal of GOT7.

“She’s A Monster” is an interesting title for a track that is a ballad, not a dance-pop song. The title conjures images of groups like VIXX, who have examined the darkly occult on “Voodoo Doll.” However, the lyrics of “She’s A Monster” explores the dynamics of relationships, particularly those that are one-sided. The rap breakdown in “She’s A Monster” and harmonization make this one of the most musically complex tracks on “Identify.”

The album concludes with the hit “A” from the second GOT7 EP “Got Love” and their debut single “Girls, Girls, Girls” from “Got It?” “A” and “Girls, Girls, Girls” have helped to establish GOT7 as a formidable K-Pop group. Both songs benefit from composition and production by Park Jin Young.

Listen to the debut studio album from GOT7 ‘Identify’ HERE.

Tagged :  JYP Entertainment, GOT7, Identify, Park Jin Young, j.y. park


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