Monday, 1 November 2010

JYJ - The Beginning?

"JYJ" consists of three Korean guys; Jaejoong, Yoochun and Junsu. These 3 very talented men belonged to a five piece once upong a time called Dong Bang Shin Ki (otherwise known as DBSK/TVXQ/THSK in Korea, China and Japan).

For the regulars that come my blog you will know that I am a big fan of DBSK, which also included the members Changmin and Yunho. JYJ sued their agency SM Entertainment due to unfair wages and treatment where they were apparently overworked and under paid (rumour has it that they HAD to sell 50, 000 per record otherwise they'd get nothing) so JYJ decided to go their own way.

As a five piece, they were always so in sync with each other. When they danced it was like one, when they sang it was like one (they can even sing acapella) and their music was also unique. I listen to Asian music to get away from the mediocre American and English tunes - a lot of things are very samey now and so generic. While there are American influences in Asian music, it still has it's own unique sound and each artist I have come across are so diverse in what they do that I never find them boring.

So, I was super excited to hear that JYJ were releasing a worldwide album! They were touring round Asia doing showcases and even going to AMERICA. I was like Wow! Things are really looking up for these dudes!

And this is where the bad news comes in.

I heard the whole album was going to be in English and I just thought "Erm...okay. It's endearing when they sing English bits in their Korean songs but a whole song in English? ...Right." and then I heard that Kanye West had done a song for them.

No, no, no, no.

I will openly admit I'm not a Kanye fan. I'm not a particular fan of his music and I am definitely not a fan of his egotistic, arrogant personality either, so when I heard that Kanye was doing a song for them I was crushed. I knew JYJ weren't going to be what they thought they would be and I was worried for them.

Some the songs began to leak soon after it was released (i.e. put on YouTube) and I gave some of them a listen. Unfortunately, and it really saddens me to say it, but I couldn't listen to any song in it's entirety. It was all generic, American sounding music. And bless their souls, their accents made it difficult to understand what they were saying.

These 3 men are so, so talented and brilliant live. DBSK and JYJ are two very different groups and it pains me to see these 3 men not using their full potential, because JYJ could be so much better.

Today the video for their first release "Ayyy Girl ft. Kanye West" was released. I forced myself to watch and listen to the whole thing.

JYJ - Ayyy Girl ft. Kanye West

Kanye West, what have you done to my boys? The song is so bland, generic, boring and one level. There's no change in tempo or tune, it doesn't make me feel anything. I don't want to dance. I don't want to cry. I just want to switch it off. (Actually, I do kinda want to cry, but for the all the wrong reasons...)

I understand that they want success, that's what every musician wants (and they ARE musicians, they do write some of their songs and Micky plays the piano) but it's a shame that they've had to go down the generic route in the hopes to get it, especially in America.

Please don't get me wrong, I wish the boys all the best in their endeavour and sincerely hope that they do well. This music just isn't for me.

If you want to, compare the JYJ song with DBSK songs.


DBSK - "O"

DBSK - Tonight

DBSK - My Little Princess (Acapella)

Maybe I'm just bitter because DBSK are currently on hiatus, but I don't think so. I was excited to hear that JYJ formed until I heard their music. I commend them for going outside their comfort zone and doing something else, but seeing what they did in DBSK and seeing what they're doing now...I can't help but think that their talent is being wasted.

The DBSK fanclub is called Cassiopeia which is named after the five star constellation, and the fans are called Cassies. I am a Cassie. I am a fan of each member of the group and from what I've seen, they seem like lovely, genuine, fun young men. I wish each and every one of them success in what they do, but I'm afraid that I just can't get to grips with JYJ.