Release Date: May 3, 2011
- Let’s Step Up
- Bang (2011 New Recording)
- Play Ur Love
- Dream feat. Pre-School Girl
- Because Of You (2011 New Recording)
- Leaning Against Time (Rania Solo)
- Are You Doing Okay
- Funky Man
- My Bell (Jung Ah Solo)
- When I Fall (2011 New Recording)
- Shampoo (Radio Edit)
After a plethora of singles, collaborations and sub-groups After School finally release their first full length album. So does this continue the momentum created by all the work before this or does After School go straight to detention for failing to live up to the hype?
The album starts off strong with a couple of high energy songs including a re-recording of their popular song Bang! (and no it’s not as drastic of a re-working as the Japanese version) and the catchy Shampoo. Then the album goes into a weird mesh of ballads and mid-tempo tracks and loses its flow a little.
The ideal track arrangement would be to move Leaning Against Time up to be after Play Ur Love and then leave the rest the same. To me that seems more like a natural movement of songs.
But that’s neither here nor there when it comes to the actual quality of the songs. Dream and Because Of You are similar to the dance tracks that started the album. Dream is probably the better of the two since it’s slightly slower and less frantic.
As you get towards the end of the album you start hitting more ballads. Perhaps there was a need to prove that this group can do more than catchy pop/dance songs?
Whatever the reason I found the solo songs from Raina and Jung Ah to be some top notch stuff. In a way these songs are similar to what can be heard on Kahi’s mini-album so if you liked those you’ll probably dig the solos here. Raina’s is the one to listen to if you only have to choose one.
I believe this album lived up to expectations. It’s nothing ground breaking but it’s enough satisfy most people’s K-Pop fix.