- Ayyy Girl feat. Kanye West & Malik Yusef
- Be My Girl
- Still In Love
- I Can Soar
- I Love You feat. Flowsik
- Be The One
- Ayyy Girl (DJ Eon Remix)
- Empty (DJ Eon Remix)
- Be My Girl (DJ Eon Remix)
JYJ consists of three former members of DBSK (a.k.a. TVXQ, Tohoshinki) Jae-joong, Yoo-chun and Jun-su. The Beginning is their global album and features production from Kanye West and Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins. Those who are used to hearing them over typical K-Pop productions are in for a surprise as this has a very Americanized sound. Whether that’s a good thing? Well… At least the album is in English?
The first real song Ayyy Girl feat. Kanye West and Malik Yusef did not set a good tone for this album. Kanye’s verses are good up until he tries to sing. He should not try to sing without Autotune. The beats themselves and Malik Yusef’s rap were tight. Unfortunately JYJ are the weak link in this track. They don’t sound quite right during this song. I think this would have been better as a Kanye song with JYJ doing backup vocals.
The Darkchild tracks are Empty and Be My Girl. Empty sounds similar to Ne-Yo’s Closer, mixing a bit of House with R&B. This was a marked improvement over the mess that was Ayyy Girl. Be My Girl is a mid-tempo R&B track and it’s probably the best of the collaborations with the bigger name American producers. Why this wasn’t released as the first single is beyond me. I guess the cred of having Kanye West on the song won out over quality?
The other 4 songs afterwards are fairly run of the mill pedestrian R&B, mostly ballads and rather blah. I Can Soar was the low point, it was like a poor mans I Believe I Can Fly. The only standout was Be The One which is closer to the current Electro sound of K-Pop and brings a bit of life to the end of the album. It would have been nice if there were a few more songs like it.
This album has sold over 520,000 copies in pre-orders and I’m fairly sure the majority of those buyers could really care less about whether it’s good or bad. For those who do, well you’re going to be disappointed. This is nowhere near the quality of what these men have done with DBSK and given the talent level, this could have been so much better.
Bypass The Beginning and only buy if you’re a hardcore fan and want to complete your collection.
The Beginning (Normal Edition)
The Beginning (Normal Edition + Poster)
The Beginning (Special Edition + Folded Poster)
The Beginning (Special Edition + Poster In Tube)