SISTAR – LOVING U Special Album Review

Sistar made a stellar comeback with quite possibly my vote for best song of the year (unless someone comes out later in the year who can challenge that) earlier in April with "Alone." Like I've said in previous album reviews of SISTAR, I enjoy their music but more often than not do they come up with impressive lead singles but mediocre album tracks. In other words, their albums tend to only have one or two good songs with the rest of the album straddling the line between mediocre and just plain bad. That, however, is not a knock on SISTAR's abilities at all. I have all the respect and admiration for the girls and I am glad that they are enjoying the awards someone of their caliber ought to enjoy. But in all honesty, their producers (that's the Brave Brothers) often forego interesting musical choices for rehash of what they've done before.

Their new album, Loving U is perhaps SISTAR's most enjoyable album for me since all of the songs work on a level unlike their previous albums. Sure, none of these songs can hold a candle to "Ma Boy" or "Alone", peak achievements for SISTAR in my opinion, but they're consistently engaging given the summer theme of the album. What I just stated above is misleading since the majority of this album isn't new material-they're remixes of their best songs (aka their lead singles). The two new songs, however, are both bright and sunny that one can imagine being in a beach while listening to them, which is the point.

Of the two new songs, "Loving U" is the superior one, with all members performing at their most comfortable best yet. I've never heard them as genuinely fun-loving as they do here. The instrumental is decidedly brighter, with each singer matching the brightness with their girly vocals. I quite like what Soyu brings to the table, especially because she adds a whimsical touch to the bridge. Hyorin, of course, does wonderful work too, adding just enough drama to make the song more exciting than it ought to be.

The second new song, "Holiday", isn't as memorable as "Loving U" but it does sound fun and exciting. If I have a complaint, it will be that this song seems to push SISTAR back to their "Push Push" days where they were singing more amateurish material. That's something they've explored quite already and I wonder whether they could have done a summer song without coming off as too adolescent.

Of the remixes of the new songs, I think the producers did an excellent job of coming up with fresh new instrumentals that matched well with the material. Some of these are so impressive that they only add layers to the previous materials. "Alone" has never sounded so relaxing to me because of the sad lyrics, but here I love how the music seems to match Alone's sober tones instead of diluting its sadness with kinetic sounds. "How Dare You" is perhaps the best new version in this album, slowing down the song significantly and restructuring its lyrics enough that the song becomes more interesting. I love the instrumental because it surprisingly fits the song so well. In addition, I also prefer the remix of "So Cool" to the original because it seems more in sync with the lyrics of being fine after a breakup in addition to the fact that it has the more interesting instrumental.

Overall, I think this album is their best album yet even if it is mostly remixes. This solidifies my comments earlier about SISTAR's lead singles being their best songs. All of these songs are lead singles remixed into new interesting tracks. Thankfully, their talent shines through.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

* This article is contributed by and does not represent the views or opinions of KpopStarz.

Loving U


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