Release Date: October 21, 2020
- Suki to Iwasetai
- Buenos Aires
- Suki ni Nacchau Darou?
- Yummy Summer
- La Vie En Rose (Japanese Ver.)
- Violeta (Japanese Ver.)
- FIESTA (Japanese Ver.)
- Yume wo Miteiru Aida (Japanese Ver.) [IZ*ONE ver.]
- Dou Sureba ii?
- Shy Boy
IZ*ONE recently celebrated its second anniversary on October 29, 2020. During their time together, they have released three Korean mini-albums and one full-length album.
Their Japanese releases have been relatively scarce compared to their Korean discography. They have released three singles, and this, their first Japanese full-length album entitled Twelve.
Twelve contains all of IZ*ONE’s Japanese a-sides, Japanese language versions of the singles from their flower-themed Korean albums. Most importantly, there are five new original Japanese songs present, with Beware being the lead single for the album.
When it comes to IZ*ONE’s Japanese discography, there is an argument that it is inferior to their Korean one. What one has to keep in mind when thinking about this is that there is less material to make a fair comparison.
Second, Japanese listeners generally (but not always) have different tastes from their Korean counterparts when it comes to idol music. Unlike many K-Pop crossover acts, the Japanese music of IZ*ONE is catered to the market rather than being straight ports of their Korean hits in Japanese.
Since much of this album’s content has been covered in previous articles or is previously released, this review will focus primarily on the five new songs.
The lead song from Twelve is Beware. It’s not exactly the type of song that sets the world on fire and is probably the weakest of the new songs. At least its video is lively and cute, and you can easily watch it on mute to enhance the enjoyment factor.
The remaining new songs are much better, with Waiting, Yummy Summer and Shy Boy being fine displays of the bubblegum pop where IZ*ONE excels. Of this batch of songs Waiting is worth listening to repeatedly.
Dou Sureba ii? is the one song that stands out the most due to its mix of jazz lounge and pop music. It doesn’t suit anyone vocally except for Yuri. She has the pipes to match this instrumental convincingly. Too bad it wasn’t a solo song for her.
So what is the final verdict on Twelve? It can be theorized that much of IZ*ONE’s Japanese material is only baiting wota for selling handshakes and hi-touch tickets. That reasoning supports their Japanese music as inferior as it feels there is little effort put into the music itself, focusing on pushing as many units as possible instead.
Yet when you take Twelve in as a whole, it’s a fairly decent album.