SNSD's Vocal Prowess: The Good, the Bad and the Ones Who Lack Something.

12/18/2011: I am temporarily disabling comments on this post until I put up a re-written, version 2 of this vocal commentary. You may share your thoughts once I post Version 2, hopefully by January 2012. Thank you.

After the intro I gave yesterday, here're my actual comments on the girls! Read on:

The bad:

Hyoyeon
Whatever this girl tries to do, she will forever be the worse voice in the band. Like Yunho is in DBSK, Hyoyeon is SNSD's resident dancer - she gets all the dance breaks and is sent to all these dance battle extravaganzas. She's also a bad singer. If all you hear is Hyoyeon and not the better voices in the band I wouldn't be surprised if you said they sucked because frankly, I think the only reason why this girl is in the band is because they need someone to send to the dance battles. That's it. Actually, the more I think about it the more Hyoyeon's voice is like a female, crappy-er version of U-Know Yunho (see the DBSK commentary for what I think of his voice). The only difference is that there's nothing wrong with her throat and Yunho sounds pretty OK when he hits the certain notes in higher octaves he can actually hit.

Jessica
I know a lot of people will kill me for this but it's my opinion so live with it. I don't like Jessica's voice, I'm sorry. It's annoying as hell - whine-y and tries desperately to hit high notes she clearly can't do, she needs Taeyeon as backup. Actually, she does sound like an annoying version of Taeyeon.

BUT, she sounds the same recorded and live so you gotta hand it to her.

Yoona
Yoona isn't a BAD singer, but she's not as good as the 'nothing special' people. She was actually pretty good during their early days but I don't know what in the world happened because now she doesn't sound like she was before. At the moment it's like she's singing like she's talking, in the bad way.

Nothing Special/Good but lack something:

Sunny
Sunny has a nice voice recorded and at certain octaves but never, ever, EVER let her sing a ballad with high notes - her voice gets annoying and shrill and she can't do it. Even when she does uptempos live it doesn't sound like the recorded version - the girl can't sing live either. BUT, her recorded voice is nice so all you need are a few studio tricks and you're good to go. Below is a performance she did with (brilliant) Jaejoong DBSK and while Jaejoong was doing great as usual, Sunny was kinda hurting my eardrums.

Yuri
Yuri's voice actually has a nice timbre and it's smooth but it tends to get a little too thin and airy at times. If you use Girls' Generation (the single) as a basis she wasn't very good but over the years she's gotten better!

Sooyoung
Sooyoung's also got a very nice timbre to her voice but she needs more power live - and she has to learn how to breath properly. Excessive breathing annoys the heck out of me and really, it shows you don't know how to sing. That's pretty much it with her - she's got the potential.

Pretty darn good:

Seohyun
Seohyun has a nice voice, she really does but she hardly got any solid singing parts in Genie and Etude is too cutesy to be judged. Her voice is nothing like Tiffany of Taeyeon's but it's competent and it's better than the rest of them. Below is her duet with Tiffany and although her English isn't THAT good and the sound system really sucks, her vocals aren't bad.


Taeyeon
Taeyeon deserves to be the leader based on vocal abilities alone - this girl can sing her head off. She's like Jessica if she wasn't so damn annoying but Taeyeon can hit high notes nicely with little effort, really. OK there are times when the girls' a bit off but really, who can contest her vocals in THIS performance? I never knew she had that in her when she sang "left behind.."

Tiffany
Although Taeyeon has a gorgeous voice, my personal favorite in SNSD would have to be Tiffany. Beautiful timbre and she hits those high notes like they're nothing - she's pretty much a package deal. Not much to say anymore, really. Watch:

Phew, that was LONG. Don't forget to vote on the poll on who YOU think has the best voice in the band!

41 comments:

  1. IMHO, I think a lot of your commentary is highly skewed towards your own personal opinion rather than a fair evaluation. Nothing wrong with that though, I still enjoyed reading this.

    The only one I totally disagree with you on is Hyoyeon.
    She doesn't get sent to all the dance battles(see KBS "Shall We Dance" Chuseok Special - Sooyoung went). Honestly, if SM needed good dancers in SNSD, the foursome of Yuri/Sooyoung/YoonA/Jessica would have sufficed. (That said, I still don't know why some members are in SNSD when they don't get to do anything.)

    I'm no master at singing or evaluating voices, all I do is listen to those whose songs I like. As for Hyoyeon's voice, I think it's actually quite stable and she sounds the same live as the recorded version (judginging from the Gee performances). Her vocal range is quite deep, and definitely not naturally high enough for the usual pop songs that SNSD sings, like Gee/Genie/Boyfriend. So by that count, I think she's done really well considering the songs fit nowhere near her vocal range.

    If you have doubts that she can sing, watch this video of her singing As Time Goes By with Sunny and Yuri. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LLAePPZ0Ls8

    Thanks for writing this commentary, and for reading this comment. ;D

    And I apologise if you get sent multiple notifications, somehow blogger isn't working properly. D:

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh no! I quite like Jessica and Yuri's voices, but agree with you that Tiffany's vocals often knock it out the ball park (whatever that means). Ever thought about doing an analysis of the saturdays?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hey Nikki,
    Other than Tiffany, I actually quite like Sunny and Jessica's voice. I'm so biased, I think I enjoyed everyone but Hyoyeon (!). That I gotta agree witchu. Keke. Nice stuff anyway. A very good read. =)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Einhart - Your opinion - I respect it and it's fine with me! I obviously know nothing about dancing and I never will but I've been hearing people push that Hyoyeon's the dancer in the band. Apparently I was wrong! hahah.

    Paul - Yuri I don't have a particularly big problem with but she's oftentimes overshadowed by the others.

    They've been on the list since I started the special! It's coming, it's coming.

    rcLoy - Sunny's good - she just can't sing ballads live. Hahah.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hyoyeon isn't a bad singer, but she isn't meant for singing. Knowing how to dance so well, that's her edge, and the biggest reason she's in SNSD. Yeah, Yuri can dance, but she's the sexy part of that, while Hyoyeon is more technique.

    Yuri seems to have a settled voice, but not one to brag about. I'd actually like to see her rapping skills for a song in the future. She seems to be capable of that and of course she can dance very well.

    Sooyoung's voice sort of has a BoA-esque feel to it, but she does strain on high notes. Also, she isn't a singer either, but she does fine enough. She contributes with other stuff, that singing isn't very necessary for her.

    Jessica can be annoying to some and angelic to others. It's the matter of opinion and to me I like her voice. She has a very cute tone to her voice, it fits very well with the group. From all those cute songs SNSD sings, well Jessica can shine, cause that's her knack. She's very pretty, can sing well, and very much so fit for the group.

    Taeyeon is unbelievable, especially for someone of her height! You wouldn't think she'd have those kind of lungs. She's been working very hard as the leader and the main vocalist. (Still is working just as hard.) I love her to bits, and find that she's perfect for what she is. She brings that umph to songs when you're expecting it. Also, she's just the most adorable person I've ever did see.

    Sunny's voice fits perfectly for soft ballads because it's so clean, that it works very well. It's unfortunate her voice isn't large enough for the bigger ballads, but she makes up for it. She'll bring her aegyo and sexy dance moves to make up for that.

    Yoona, well I never know with her, she's so busy all of the over place with being an actress. I hardly hear her sing, but from the last I heard her sing, she sounds average. Not sure what kind of range she, but I doubt it goes that high or very low, so very constant.

    Seohyun is a very good singer. Honestly, I think her English is pretty good, I can understand her fine. Obviously the accent shows, but you can't help that. She has a nice range. She can reach some high notes, very smooth, fits very well with the group. I wish they'd influence her piano skills into a song, that would be grand.

    Tiffany is mixed oranges for me. She can sound outstanding at times, but then her voice can be out of it big time. I understand she loses her voice easily and has many problems as of recently. Although, she's definitely one of the better singers in the group. She can sing in English fluently, reach high notes when normal, and is overall a very good singer.

    So that's my long opinion.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I like long comments - shows that I'm not the only one doing the thinking here!

    I understand that some girls in this band are meant for dancing like you said but it's just a matter of my personal values and the things I believe in - a MUSICAL band who releases MUSIC should all have SINGING as the focal point. I respect your opinions though but since I know nothing about dancing I can't agree fully with you!

    I do agree, Jessica's voice is very apt for the cutesy side of SNSD - I like the way you put it!

    Taeyeon is damn good! hahah.

    ReplyDelete
  7. @nikki

    My meaning was that Hyoyeon is being touted as THE dancer of the group, but even then, she doesn't get any chances to really dance or even any attention at all.

    I suppose there's no point in saying this, but SNSD was never a singing group. They're a pop idol group. They can only go so far with their music, and it's already somewhat of a blessing that SM only debuts people who are talented and can sing well. (Yes, I think Hyoyeon and YoonA can sing well. At the very least, they do much better than me. XD)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Ah OK. Thanks for the clarification.

    The fact that companies don't take people who release music as singing groups is something I just don't understand (I'm not saying you're wrong or anything though because I think you're right!). I know it's true that they're most probably not meant to be a singing group but in my opinion they should be. They release music, that's what they sell. If they can't execute what they sell then for me they better drop the whole music thing and just be models or actresses or dancers - what's the point in releasing songs if music isn't your first priority?

    Hahah. Just an opinion though - that's pretty much a part of my main frustration in life.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I agree with you on the top 3 best singers in SNSD. To be honest, I'm quite happy to meet someone who shares JUST ABOUT the same opinion as mine when it comes to SNSD's vocals. For 'The Bad' category, i'm both agreeing and disagreeing. Disagreeing on Hyoyeon's particularly, because i've heard this one (yes,unfortunately, there's only one) audio rip where Hyoyeon's voice was not that bad, it's okay to me. Jessica's voice is high and 'sugary' but there are times when she's good. Her voice is dependent on the type of music. Lastly, Yoona, i don't know, it's just that there's some potential in her. This three should be in the intermediate category.

    Nonetheless, a very good opinion you had there, I respect that.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hahah. Yay! Which audio rip was that? I might change my mind if I hear it although I'm convinced that she's just not cutting it for me. Jessica can be good sometimes, yes, but for me the times when she's just plain annoying exceeds the times when she sings well. Yoona can sing, yes, but I put her there because the other 6 girls are better than her. Hahah.

    Thanks for reading!

    ReplyDelete
  11. WOW. That was an interesting read.
    I agree mostly with what you have put forth.

    My personal favourite is also Tiffany (not because she has THE best vocals), but I guess as some has stated that she is suffering from vocal cord nodules these days. But for me, even before she was suffering from that, there were times she was amazing, but at others it sometimes sounded like she hasn't warmed properly or something. Overall, I must agree with 'ggg' that Tiffany is a bit mixed... though I still love her to bits. I guess she just needs a little better control of her voice?

    Taeyeon is amazing, of course there are random times she kinda misses the note, but hey, she's human right and the girls are sometimes running on virtually no rest, so... But she is freaking fantastic, I mean her weird and dorky antics and then POW! It's like a completely different person when she begins to sing.

    I guess I'm on the other side for Jessica in that I like her voice. Though I agree there are times she strains to reach the high notes, however, there are also times where she kinda wows me.

    Seohyun's a bit mixed for me as well, because I think her voice really depends on the song she sings? Just... I dunno if it's just me, but when she does sing anything in English, I'm quite amazed by her voice - it sounds almost completely different to when she's singing in Korean. I mean despite the accent and all, I personally like it when she sings English songs.

    Another not so sure for me is Sunny, because at times it seems she can sing well, but at others it's kinda... 'bleh' for me. Haha. Though I am in love with the song, SarangIn Gulyo where she sings with Taeyeon.

    As for the 'bad singers' I think that's a bit harsh to be labeled that because they aren't actually bad. The most basic thing is that they're in tune right (in my opinion anyways). For me, I'd just say they're a bit lacking in the vocal department?

    I guess overall, I'd just split the girls into 2 groups, 'the better' and the 'not as good' groups.

    The better would be: Taeyeon, Tiffany, Jessica and Seohyun (for me).

    And the not as good: Sunny, Sooyoung, Yuri, Yoona and Hyoyeon.

    Though having said that, just because they're not as good in my books doesn't mean they can't sing well.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hahah. Thanks for reading!

    Tiffany is good, and she may need a little technique but so do the rest of the girls - she's the one who needs the least in the band, I think.

    Taeyeon deserves to be the leader. Even if I think Tiffany's better, she can sing her head off and she tries hard enough.

    Yeah.

    With Sunny I think she has a decent voice, it's just that she shouldn't be allowed to sing ballads live!

    Hm. OK, your opinion!

    Well yeah, we all have different opinions - what's good for you might not be good for me! Hahah.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I agree that everyone is entitled to their own opinion and I respect that completely. :D

    But seriously, listening to the members from their debut/1st Album days compared to now, I really believe that Tiffany has improved a great deal, perhaps the most in the group during the 9 month break they had. *Shrugs* It's just a pity that she suffers every now and then.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I don't know. With all due respect to people who believe Tiffany is the best, I don't think that video shows anything. Yes, she sounds nice, but I feel there are thousands of YouTube singers (some who are even just mediocre) who can sing that little clip better than her even though she's probably hummed that song to herself for years if she did live in the US. Maybe she is one of the strongest in that group, but it's not saying much. But, whatever, it's not like SNSD is really known for amazing vocals anyway.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I don't know. With all due respect to people who believe Tiffany is the best, I don't think that video shows anything. Yes, she sounds nice, but I feel there are thousands of YouTube singers (some who are even just mediocre) who can sing that little clip better than her even though she's probably hummed that song to herself for years if she did live in the US. Maybe she is one of the strongest in that group, but it's not saying much. But, whatever, it's not like SNSD is really known for amazing vocals anyway.

    ReplyDelete
  16. This is in the context of the band. I will admit that there are millions of better voices out there and there are millions of better singers but among these 9 girls who don't have any especially outstanding vocals whatsoever, she's hands-down the best.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I think you should listen to SNSD's star star star. Its a ballad and everyone sings. All except for Yoona. There are also parts in baby baby where hyo yeon sings and its not that bad. I do agree with you that yoona 'used' to do so well in the singing sector.

    I hope you do a re-evalution after hearing Star star star. Pleaseeee and thank you. Btw, your reviews Rock.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I think you should listen to SNSD's star star star. Its a ballad and everyone sings. All except for Yoona. There are also parts in baby baby where hyo yeon sings and its not that bad. I do agree with you that yoona 'used' to do so well in the singing sector.

    I hope you do a re-evalution after hearing Star star star. Pleaseeee and thank you. Btw, your reviews Rock.

    ReplyDelete
  19. helloooo. i just left a LONG comment on SHINee's vocal prowess page. so i'm back for SNSD's.

    1) i don't LIKE SNSD as much as i like SHINee for various reasons, so by default, i don't know their voices or their music as well and have MUCH less to say. well, technically more because there's 9.

    2) i agree with most of your review, but i think i might end up being harsher....

    3) i don't recall ever seeing a solid live performance from them and i have seen quite a few, so i don't have that to go off from either... so SONES, don't kill me. okie?

    hyoyeon - great dancer. not a good singer. i've rarely heard her sing a solo part live. let alone well.

    jessica - don't like her voice. never have. never will. a lot like krystal's. over hyped. not good. i understand she's a main vocalist. but i can't stand her voice. it's consistent which is a plus. but it's screechy and weak and not pleasant on the ears. i want her and onew's duet to be redone with onew and someone else.

    yoona - she doesn't sing much. i don't mind. i think she tries really hard, but just not.... meant to sing.....

    sunny - i think sometimes she sounds very nice and other times very bad. she doesn't seem to have much range and it sounds good autotuned.

    yuri - i haven't heard yuri sing all that much. i agree it's thin but quite smooth. like SHINee's taemin, just not as ..... good.

    sooyoung - she needs to pick up on breathing for SURE. i think once she learns that, it will be quite a decent voice.

    seohyun - i very much like her voice. it's really light and nice to listen to. not extraordinary, but very decent.

    taeyeon - by far my favorite voice. well, far from the other 6. i LOVE her voice. it's powerful and rich and really beautiful to listen to because she doesn't get excessive.

    tiffany - i like her voice a lot too. does not scream her head off during high notes, great range, and has a somewhat light but powerful voice.

    so no. i am not an anti. i am just giving my opinions on the group. if i were an anti, i don't think i'd bother reading anything related to them.

    so there. another longgggg comment. sorry.....

    ReplyDelete
  20. Thank God there is finally someone speaking some senses. I mean, whenever I discuss problems of vocals the Scones would just brush me off and NEVER take my suggestion seriously. They would call me trolls, butthurts and the likes and end the argument.

    I think taeyeon and tiffany have above average to good vocals. But the rest, sorry most of the times I see them as under average. Korean markets are getting much more crowded but amount of good vocals - for girls at least - is really sparse. . I hope we can have a girl grp with strong vocals (generally) at DBSK's standard. Any suggestion for someone that can come close?

    ReplyDelete
  21. Actually, having listened to their most recent ballad live. It seems Sunny might get an upgrade in my books. Haha.

    It seems to me that the girls continually grow and become better in all aspects - not just singing.

    My newest opinion is, the girls aren't exceptionally talented, but when given the right range to sing in, they certainly can excel. Yes, this applies to all the girls. I mean hearing Mistake live or just the mp3, you can tell they all sing well - and the song is very suitable for their vocal range (something way lower than their standard title songs for sure). Even the least talented vocals in the group shine through - despite the minimal amount of lines.

    I'm quite happy with their title tracks this year, Oh! was their standard girly high pitched song. But then there was RDR - much lower in range, and the closest thing we have to 'rap' in any of the girl's title tracks. Now we have Hoot!, though not everyone's cup of tea, but somehow, I believe it's the title track in recent years that best showcases their vocals - and the lack of autotune is a plus. Though once again, the lines aren't distributed evenly amongst the group (especially in Hyoyeon's case), but it seems theirs a larger variety of adlibs distributed to other members, and not just the standard Taeyeon & Jessica (and occasionally Tiffany).

    I mean sure,they're not the most vocally gifted girl group on average in the Kpop industry these days. However, in my honest opinion, they're certainly not the worst or can even considered to be in the less talented category amongst girl groups. Not to mention, they surely are the most well-rounded ones in all aspects of being an IDOL. And I guess that's what they excel best at, being together 9 as 1 showing their bond, and being a top Idol together - the reason I believe most fans of SNSD like most about them.

    Anyways, to the person who asked about vocally talented girl groups - the ppl that come to mind would be, CSJH (since they were meant to be the female counter part of DBSK). Sadly they're not getting the recognition they deserve.

    Brown Eyed Girls are pretty good vocally too, but since they have to follow the trend, their title tracks in the recent days generally don't allow them to showcase their vocals, but if you look into their ballads or even just their old stuff, you'll see.

    Davichi is definitely vocally gifted, but then it's probably because they don't completely fall under the whole IDOL category.

    Anyways, the end for this year's review of the girls vocal skills.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Actually, having listened to their most recent ballad live. It seems Sunny might get an upgrade in my books. Haha.

    It seems to me that the girls continually grow and become better in all aspects - not just singing.

    My newest opinion is, the girls aren't exceptionally talented, but when given the right range to sing in, they certainly can excel. Yes, this applies to all the girls. I mean hearing Mistake live or just the mp3, you can tell they all sing well - and the song is very suitable for their vocal range (something way lower than their standard title songs for sure). Even the least talented vocals in the group shine through - despite the minimal amount of lines.

    I'm quite happy with their title tracks this year, Oh! was their standard girly high pitched song. But then there was RDR - much lower in range, and the closest thing we have to 'rap' in any of the girl's title tracks. Now we have Hoot!, though not everyone's cup of tea, but somehow, I believe it's the title track in recent years that best showcases their vocals - and the lack of autotune is a plus. Though once again, the lines aren't distributed evenly amongst the group (especially in Hyoyeon's case), but it seems theirs a larger variety of adlibs distributed to other members, and not just the standard Taeyeon & Jessica (and occasionally Tiffany).

    I mean sure,they're not the most vocally gifted girl group on average in the Kpop industry these days. However, in my honest opinion, they're certainly not the worst or can even considered to be in the less talented category amongst girl groups. Not to mention, they surely are the most well-rounded ones in all aspects of being an IDOL. And I guess that's what they excel best at, being together 9 as 1 showing their bond, and being a top Idol together - the reason I believe most fans of SNSD like most about them.

    Anyways, the end for this year's review of the girls vocal skills.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Oh yes, also to the person who asked about vocally talented girl groups to recommend - the ppl that come to mind would be, CSJH (since they were meant to be the female counter part of DBSK). Sadly they're not getting the recognition they deserve.

    Brown Eyed Girls are pretty good vocally too, but since they have to follow the trend, their title tracks in the recent days generally don't allow them to showcase their vocals, but if you look into their ballads or even just their old stuff, you'll see.

    Davichi is definitely vocally gifted, but then it's probably because they don't completely fall under the whole IDOL category.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Thanks for the suggestion. I looked csjh up and they are now my second favorite korean band. (behind the OBVIOUS one - their male counterpart. sigh I'm such a male chauvinist *ahem JJ-sucker *ahem

    And SM is in serious trouble.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Wow, such a detailed analysis. This review goes really deep although there are some things that I would like to say.

    I think Seohyun has a great voice (great by K-pop standards) but she's not much of a performer. She has cute expressions for songs like Etude, Oh! and Gee, but she has that same "blank" face for others like RDR and Hoot. She doesn't have that much physical stamina either, and tends to struggle with dancing and singing at the same time. She's more of the type to sit in the radio studio and sing; she has a stable live and is able to perform well then.

    Taeyeon's voice is great, although one might question what happened during Oh! and RDR, when she could go completely off. She was and is fine before and after. I attribute that to the amount of rest she gets.

    Tiffany has a great voice; it's husky and girly at the same time and sounds really good. But, she tends to be a bit shaky in live perfs and the notes can go all over the place.

    Jessica has a shrill voice that you either love or hate. I personally don't like it. I agree that she's quite stable during live perfs, although she tends to shift all the notes down and is likely have her entire line flat, especially if her part is high.

    Yuri and Sooyoung have the same problems when singing live - they're just not that good, just about average. However, while Yuri has more of a performer glint in her eyes and a curvier and arguably sexier figure, Sooyoung has height and long legs.

    Sunny is, well, I don't really know what to say about her. All her live perfs sound similar, but it really depends on the song to see if she fits. Her voice is so different comparing ITNW, SNSD Tell Me, Gee and Hoot, and it's not because she's "maturing". But she's really not that good live.

    I agree that Yoona kinda talks in performances instead of singing. Not much to say, really.

    I don't think Hyoyeon is that bad though. She usually hits her notes right, though I wouldn't say she has a pleasing voice or much vocal technique. But considering how the other members are off tune as frequent as she is, I don't think she's the worst of the bunch. And I don't know anything about dancing, but I was intrigued by her in the Michael Jackson tribute.

    Okay, looking backwards it seems that I've given more of a personal rant than a comment. Sorry about that; I guess I got carried away. XP

    ReplyDelete
  26. Wow, such a detailed analysis. This review goes really deep although there are some things that I would like to say.

    I think Seohyun has a great voice (great by K-pop standards) but she's not much of a performer. She has cute expressions for songs like Etude, Oh! and Gee, but she has that same "blank" face for others like RDR and Hoot. She doesn't have that much physical stamina either, and tends to struggle with dancing and singing at the same time. She's more of the type to sit in the radio studio and sing; she has a stable live and is able to perform well then.

    Taeyeon's voice is great, although one might question what happened during Oh! and RDR, when she could go completely off. She was and is fine before and after. I attribute that to the amount of rest she gets.

    Tiffany has a great voice; it's husky and girly at the same time and sounds really good. But, she tends to be a bit shaky in live perfs and the notes can go all over the place.

    Jessica has a shrill voice that you either love or hate. I personally don't like it. I agree that she's quite stable during live perfs, although she tends to shift all the notes down and is likely have her entire line flat, especially if her part is high.

    Yuri and Sooyoung have the same problems when singing live - they're just not that good, just about average. However, while Yuri has more of a performer glint in her eyes and a curvier and arguably sexier figure, Sooyoung has height and long legs.

    Sunny is, well, I don't really know what to say about her. All her live perfs sound similar, but it really depends on the song to see if she fits. Her voice is so different comparing ITNW, SNSD Tell Me, Gee and Hoot, and it's not because she's "maturing". But she's really not that good live.

    I agree that Yoona kinda talks in performances instead of singing. Not much to say, really.

    I don't think Hyoyeon is that bad though. She usually hits her notes right, though I wouldn't say she has a pleasing voice or much vocal technique. But considering how the other members are off tune as frequent as she is, I don't think she's the worst of the bunch. And I don't know anything about dancing, but I was intrigued by her in the Michael Jackson tribute.

    Okay, looking backwards it seems that I've given more of a personal rant than a comment. Sorry about that; I guess I got carried away. XP

    ReplyDelete
  27. I have my own list for their singing. here's my order from the best to the worst:

    1. Taeyeon - Man, she's one of the best Korean female singers. Besides vocal technique, her voice is heavy unlike other female singers which distinguishes herself. Have you heard her duet with The One (Like A Star)? The One ruins everything, Taeyeon should sing alone, in my opinion.
    2. Jessica - No comment. She's great. Her voice is like warm coffee to me. I admit it, she sometimes can't hit high notes. But at least, the finishing is not as bad as Fany when she fails. Anyways, she develops her own singing style. And her falsetto is just so sweet.
    3. Tiffany - I actually put her in 3rd place only because of her very unique voice color and singing style (especially her accents). She sometimes can't hit higher notes (more often than Jessica) and not stable while singing. (I got scared out of wits when she fails in the high notes, her voice can become very loud all of a sudden on certain notes. She's trying too hard and sounds over-confident.)
    4. Seohyun - her voice is totally NOTHING. I mean it, totally. Her voice, according to me, is like a meatball inside a pot [??], she sounds like there's something covering her voice. And she doesn't have her permanent own style of singing. When she sings others' songs, she tends to copy the way the original artists sing. The main reason I put her in 4th place is because she's rarely off-key, as opposed to Tiffany.
    5. Sunny - This girl is the best when it comes to falsetto. Her vocal isn't bad too.
    6. Sooyoung - Perhaps because she once debuted in Japan, her way of singing is like Japanese people. Yeah, flat.
    7. Yoona - Her voice is very flat and nothing special. But at least, she's quite stable while singing. And these days, she tries to develop her own singing style by using kid-like voice, I suppose. It sometimes annoys me tho'. o.0~~
    8. Yuri - Although her voice is more recognizable, her problem is that she's off-key more often. Even when she's not that off-key, the music itself has outshone her voice already. Yeah, her voice is sunk by the background music.
    9. Hyoyeon - You said it all. ^.~ Even when she talks, I sometimes get annoyed by her voice. haha. But I can't hate her for that.


    Overall, each of them has reached the standard (for a girl group of course) now, all except Hyoyeon.
    These days, the girls have improved a lot compared with the time you posted your opinion.

    ReplyDelete
  28. i like snsd, but i can't say i respect them too much as artists. They do have their good points and i give them credit for working together (nine girls must be tough to deal with O.O. However, i think Snsd is overrated. I feel like their always getting "shoved in my face", but that's my opinion. Overall, i like their songs. However, they're pretty bad live. Snsd pratically whispers their songs on stage. You can barely hear them.

    Hyo eun: she actually not that bad, i heard her sing once before, by herself. However, her vocals are still very average. She is more of a dancer (which she is pretty good at)

    Yoona: completely overrated. Her vocals and dancing is average. At least Hyoyeun can dance well. Yoona only get's vocal parts because she is popular. I will never like Yoona

    Jessica: another overrated member. She is annoying, but i will admit she does have her good momments. I think she tries to belt out her vocals but they come across as shrill and whiney. Maybe if she stayed in her range, she would sound better

    Yuri: I actually like Yuri's voice, but i think she could still improve it.

    Sooyoung: she actually has a very nice voice, but as you said, she needs to learn how to breathe. I think she deserves more singing parts.

    Taeyeon: i love her voice and she can really belt out those vocals, but it kind of annoys me how she and Jessica dominate the whole song. But then again she is a main vocalist..

    Sunny: cutesy aspect to the songs. She is pretty good, but hehehe she should never sing ballads.

    Seohyun: she has a nice, deep voice and i honestly think she deserves more singing parts.

    Tiffany: she has a very lovely voice and i think she deserves more vocal parts than Jessica. She doesn't try to force anything and she stays in her range. She does have her off momments, but still, very nice.

    I hope i didn't miss anyone and that my opinions don't offend anyone ^-^

    ReplyDelete
  29. I am not really an SNSD fan, just a fan of Jessica's, but I'm starting to get pissed off that she doesn't sing a lot of her high notes. Most of them are pre-recorded. However, I like her voice better than Taeyeon's. I would disagree on Tiffany's voice, though. It seems like no matter what she sings, it irks me. She doesn't know how to use her voice and her voice is just damn annoying. I know a lot of people are going to kill me for bashing their "mushroom", but honestly, for the people who say that they can't imagine SNSD without Tiffany, I, for one, can.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I don't like it...
    SNSD was good Hyoyeon was just not given too many lines on a song...
    Yoona and Hyo and Sooyoung were first to put into SNSD.. It means they have talent..They are just focused on dancing not singing.. Just listen to Sooyoung's Happy me cover..
    Yoona's Innisfree song
    Hyo singing ballad snsd songs..

    ReplyDelete
  31. I think the comments on Jessica and Sunny are slightly unfair. Jessica has the best voice control out of the group - her voice may not be as powerful as Taeyeon's, but she does control it better. She can hit the high notes as well.

    On Sunny, her range is incredible. It's easily one of the largest in the group. Plus she can sing ballads live, and can sing them pretty well.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hCMVPMLSfdk

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mGwVAbGFlZQ

    I'm not trying to attack your opinions as well. I'm just saying.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I laugh on your opinion, but i give my respect although its kinda so unprofessional your comment saying someone's voice is "annoying". dont you have any other word besides this?
    Jessica isnt my first bias, but she definitely has somewhat responsibility as big as Taeyeon does. Which is why SNSD has 2 main vocalists, Taeyeon and Jessica. They wouldnt actually make it in singing live if it was Taeyeon the only main vocalist, she needs Jessica's help to sing louder to compensate others voice being bad that day. They are a 9 person group, 1 carry 8 isnt good for throat. Even though Taeyeon has the best voice in the group, but she definitely cant do it without Jessica, neither can Jessica without Taeyeon, i remember once Taeyeon absent in a show where Jessica hardly breathe carrying 7 other voices while she had to dance at the same time, i heard it clearly.
    Also, i wouldnt say someone cant sing just because she/he couldnt hit a high note. depends on the situation, one of the reasons leading to vocal breaks is when transitioning from modalvoice to falsetto, cause both dont connect each other, technically it happens to every singer. which was also Jessica's only problem. Now she improved a lot, its not a problem anymore for her.
    Never meant to offend, im just saying as well.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Hmmm.. this is something interesting article you wrote.
    I aggree and disagree at some parts of it.
    First of all, SME took them as trainees not because they are talented only in singing, but also in dancing, acting, modeling, etc. No wonder only some can sing 'properly'.

    For me, in SNSD, the main vocalist are Taeyeon, Jessica, Tiffany, Seohyun, Sunny.
    Taeyeon is clearly one of the best vocalist without a doubt. Not just in SNSD but in K-Pop. Almost all hardest part of SNSD's songs are given to Taeyeon.
    Jessica's voice sometimes is indeed annoying. But she's so good at adlib-ing and high note key.
    Tiffany is good for low note and English parts.
    Sunny is getting better in singing actually, but she still get little part of a song.
    Seohyun got much more singing parts lately which means something and her dance is not bad.

    As for the main dancer are Hyoyeon, Yuri, Sooyoung, Yoona. Their dance ability is better then the rest and often went for dance battle.
    Yoona and Sooyoung especially. They are so good. Dunno if its because of their long legs or what. But one thing for sure, Sooyoung and Yoona are fast learner of dance moves. And Seohyun replaced Yoona for dance battle when Yoona were shooting a drama in the past.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Hmm... SNSD, they have talent but SM promotes them in a way that exposes their talents that makes people see their talent for more than what it actually is imo because Korea has amazing singers that can outsing the whole of SNSD any day of the week:

    Taeyeon: A lot like a more mature f(x) Luna. She is very technical but that is also her biggest weakness. Her natural tone is very bland and common but what makes her the best singer is her range and technique. Unfortuntely, her biggest downfall is that with her tone and her emphasis on technique, she has a tendency to lack emotion when she sings.

    Jessica: She may have one of the worst voices (tone) in SNSD but she easily has the best control of her vocals. She can be quite nasal at times and developed a bad breathing habit which may also account for her airy high notes but other than that, she is stable and performs live very well. Her range is also decent when she doesn't push it.

    Yoona: Yoona's voice is not terrible. It's just painfully average. Her voice sounds like most people when they sing to their favorite song or they hum along to the radio.

    Sooyoung: Her voice is actually has moments when it can be quite cool with it's unique type of sweetness. Sooyoung's problem is that she has a tendency to go off key a lot and her vocals are weak and shaky.

    Hyoyeon: She has a nice voice, it is like the raspier huskier version of Tiffany and Sunny, I first noticed it in their song "Honey." Problem is... she can't sing. Her technique is nonexistent, she has problem with her notes and the few lines she rarely gets to sing sound bad live because she is unable to dance and sing well.

    Seohyun: Bland, Bland, Bland. Her voice reminds me of Jessica's and Tiffany's but without the uniqueness of Tiffany and the originality of Jessica. It is a calm, mild voice. She simply sings songs for what they are. She doesn't do anything to make it special or original or to make it emotional. This is what is keeping
    Seohyun an average singer rather than a good one. She could be but she needs to push herself more and apply more care to her voice and the songs she's singing.

    Sunny: Her voice is very clean and smooth, but it is also very very very common. Her voice blends in sometimes even with her fellow soshi members and if she were in another group, there would be no way to identify her simply by her voice. What saves Sunny however is her range, many people don't know that she has the widest range in the group that allows her to sing high or low. Her control is okay and there are people with worse techniques than her.

    Yuri: Her tone is gorgeous and she's actually not a terrible singer at all. She has the kind of voice that can be distinguished from others. I think her biggest weakness is that her range is minimal and she lacks confidence in her vocals. She has a very smooth voice that is very reminiscent of a Jazz type style.

    Tiffany: Easily the most versatile voice in SNSD. Although maybe not so much a technical singer (although now, she's becoming good at that too) she is the most natural singer in the group. Her vibrato and Rubato are effortless and the type that she conveys is the type that can't be learned. I love how when she sings, you can feel the song and her range is fantastic, it's just unconditioned. I honestly believe that if she were trained as long as the other members, she would have been the best singer in SNSD. She reminds me of YeEun from WG. Not the lead singer but the diamond in the rough who also happens to have the best voice. She has a clear, crisp,warm, yet calming voice that somehow comes across smooth.

    ReplyDelete
  35. I think I can't agree with you...
    Mainly because of Jessica. Things may have changed since their debut, but Jessicas's voice isn't just 'acceptable': hey, she's the 2nd vocal in SNSD.

    And maybe you think she doesn't have the better voices in the group, but yeah, she does. She may not be the most popular in Asia, but she is one of the most popular Soshis in my country. This girl is special, and people love her because SHE HAS MANY QUALITIES, deal with it.

    Also, there's a reason for why TaeYeon is the 1st vocals: she's in "the best female singers in South Korea" list :) Although Tiffany's voice is so beautiful S♥NEs have eargasms when listening to, TaeYeon's voice is... Just the best.

    I can't say your list is VERY BIASED because you just don't seem to be a fan. Really, you look like an anti, and that's the only reason I can find out why someone says those things.

    But yeah, some things you said I can agree with (like SeoHyun's voice).

    ReplyDelete
  36. I totally agreed on your analysis but I disagreed abit on Hyoyeon being one of the worst . Here's what I think :

    Taeyeon : She has the best voice in SNSD . She can achieve high notes very well and her singing is just WOW ? I don't think much of her dancing though but her singing is the best of her :) Figures right ? She is the leader of SNSD

    Seohyun : I think she is the second best singer in SNSD .She can hit high notes like Taeyeon too. She has a nice accent and her piano skills rock . I think she is the most talented in SNSD because she is talented in singing , intruments and dancing .Although I thought that she hasn't much grasp the expression wise , I change totally when I saw the ending of "Bad Girl" Live , dang .. she totally killed it at the end.

    Tiffany : I think she is the third best singer in SNSD . I like her husky accents but sometimes she is still shaky when hitting high notes unlike Taeyeon and Seohyun .

    Jessica :Not to say that her voice is terrible but it's too girly and screechy . Sorry to Sica fans out there :(

    Sooyoung :I think her voice is okay . I especially liked her voice when she sang Mistake .I think she can be a great singer if she pushes herself harder .

    Sunny : Her voice is normal but sounds kindda cute in live as she is always making cute expressions in live concerts . The Aegyo Queen .

    Yuri : I don't think much of her singing but I like her dancing .

    Yoona : Same like Yuri . She can't really sing high notes like in Star Star Star . But her dancing is nice . The truth is , many like her only because she is pretty .

    Hyoyeon : I kindda like Hyoyeon and I think she is really a dancing queen . She doesn't sing much but her dancing is WOW ?

    ReplyDelete
  37. I'm sorry, but this is more like my personal opinion towards SNSD girls, not a vocal skill rank. "Annoying" to you doesn't make that person a bad singer and it has nothing to do with vocal skills. :/

    ReplyDelete
  38. Wow, that is a long post! I won't say snsd is not talented, because to a certain extent they are. BUT, they're not as talented as everyone and SM hypes them up to be. Overall as group their vocals are decent, and i hate it when people judge SNSD's vocals just based on Taeyeon's alone. Yes, she is a very good singer, but this isn't the "taeyeon group" its snsd with nine vocalists. I still think there is room for improvement with a lot of the girls. However, i'm really impressed with their transformation in Japan, it sounds like they're starting to go their own way (kind of).

    SNSD is basically this (vocally wise). They have two girls with really gorgeous voices, one with a nice voice but nothing special, one who is stable live but her voice isn't the greatest, three who can be better with some tweaking, and two who will only ever be decent.

    Okay i will start off with i think of their vocals now :).

    Taeyeon: She has a gorgeous voice like you said, and her technique is awesome. But she really isn't a natural born "singer". She was born with a nice voice, yes, but it became gorgeous with training and maturity. To tell you the truth, i think she has hit her limit, but she is very stable live. But, I don't think she is the best of kpop like everyone hypes her up to be. I love her voice, yes, but frankly I'm kind of tired of hearing her all the time and how she is always placed in the top 3 of the best female kpop singers. She is more like top 25....maybe top 30.

    Tiffany: easily my favourite voice of the group. Taeyeon can be excessive at times, but Tiffany? hardly. She has a nice, husky voice that is so sweet with great range. Not to mention, she is quite versatile. I believe with more tweaking she will be more amazing then she already is. Her vocals are so underrated. Yes, she can be shaky live. However, i must admit, i love her duets with Taeyeon, they make an awesome duet.

    Seohyun: she is my third favourite voice of the group. She is actually so versatile if you listen closely and she has a lovely deep timbre that is actually pretty smooth. She just needs a little more power live.

    Jessica: her voice makes me cringe at times. Sometimes she sounds decent when given the right song. Her range isn't the greatest and she can sound so nasally and squeaky. Plus, for me, her tone is kind of unpleasant. but she is good live and she has good control over her voice.

    Sunny: She can sound nice at points and her actual voice, when she isn't trying to be cute, is actually not bad. She has a good range, but i wish she would stop quacking. Plus, you never know with her lives, they are pretty inconsistent. her tone is actually really nice, she just needs to stop cutesyfing it.

    Sooyoung: she is actually really decent and her voice is so sweet at times. She just needs more technique.

    Yuri: she is becoming more stable live. Her voice is pretty soothing actually, its smooth with an airy timbre. but her voice can get nasally at times.

    YoonA: ugh, this girl does nothing vocally except for a one liner. The only thing she can do is be pretty. I don't care about her dancing abilities, all i care is about the voice, plus her dancing isn't that great. Most of her fans always defend her that way, but hello! snsd is singing group not a dancing troupe. Okay, I will admit, she used to be decent, but now her vocals are really thin, weak, and flat.

    Hyoyeun: Her voice is husky and she has a lower range then the rest of them. but i think with a little push and more technique, she can learn how to use it to her advantage. Sometimes she can get a little nasally.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Wow, you were thorough. First, I want to say that my favorites of the group are the vocalists. As for the rest, sometimes I like their personalities, but overall, I can take them or leave, either way. So, this is what I think on vocal rankings:
    Taeyeon: For me she is without a doubt the best vocalist in the group. She has great control over her voice, as well as, a broad range. She's one of the most constant live. I also don't mind when she is ranked to be among the best in S.Korea.

    Tiffany/Jessica: I think they are both abbout equally as good in capapability. They sound different but have a nice range and, ever since their debut, their control has improved. I'm one of the people that think Jessica's voice is angelic. Although Tiffany is the one I enjoy listening to the most, I think she, along with Jessica, ranks second.

    Sunny: I have heard her enough times where she doesn't sing with aegyo to enjoy her voice. She has a broad range as well and better than average control. When she wants to she can sometimes add real strength to her voice.

    Seohyun: Now this is more opinion rather than objective evaluation. She has a nice range and impressive control; however, her voice for me is lacking in that special something to portray emotion and connect to the audience. A voice may be excellent in technique, but a passionate voice that gets to you sounds better.

    Now after these five, the dancers tend to be harder for me to rank because they lack more.

    Yuri: She has strength behind her voice. Her range is limited in the lower notes. I have felt her sing flatly so many times. In the end, it's the strength she sometimes has that I chose her as the best amongst the dancers.

    Sooyoung: She has a pretty voice. Her range is lacking. Sometimes in the higher keys she sounds nasally. Her control, for her range is okay at best.

    Yoona: Sometimes she sounds pretty. Sometimes she sounds nasally. Sometimes she sounds tuneless, as if she was just talking.

    Hyoyeon: Her voice sound..."unique." I know many of her fans love to hear her voice, but I don't hear any real singing ability. they say she can sing. EVERYONE can sing, it just depends whether it's bad singing or good singin. For me her singing is bad. It's lacking in range, control, and she has neither strength or grace. However, I understand why she IS in the group. They are not just singers, they are performers, and she is a superb dancer.

    well that's my opinion.

    ReplyDelete
  40. You're entitled to your opinion but it feels very biased. Someone's voice being annoying doesn't make them a bad singer. Singing is not only about the voice, it includes technique and so on. One might not like Jessica's voice but there's a reason why she's the 2nd main vocalist after Taeyeon. Jessica has the vocal techniques that comes from the 7 yr training. For some strange reason, Tiffany's voice has always irked me. I don't like her voice but that doesn't mean she's a bad singer. People can have opinions, whether they like a singer's voice or not but no one but professionals can fairly judge whether they are good singers or not.

    ReplyDelete
  41. LOL.
    The person who wrote the article doesn't seem to know a lot about both SNSD's members and vocal skills.

    - Yoona IS a bad singer. She might sound good but it's only because she doesn't have more than 3 notes to sing. No technique at all. No "resonance" at all. She doesn't even seem to have a falsetto nor a medium voice. Only a no-power-chest-voice. BUT she sounds cute and she's good at talk-singing (not a joke, it's really hard to talk-sing : see rookies Stellar and New F.o)

    - Jessica doesn't sound the same studio/live AT ALL.
    Her best skills are vibrato and she can go high with a full, powerfull and timbred chest voice. But she lacks in "elasticity". She seems not to have a medium voice so the transition between head and chest is harsh and when she should go to medium, she forces her chest voice to keep it powerfull but it sounds annoyingly weird! But her end-notes are perfect and she have the abililty to control the power of her voice in one breath (star star star or oscar).

    - Sunny and Jessica are totally opposite. Sunny's voice's elasticity is very good. But her chest voice isn't good and totally lacks resonance. She always sing with a medium voice and her head voice is very pretty. But when she goes too high with medium, she sounds as bad as you said.

    - Yuri/Hyoyeon : I don't know !

    - Sooyoung : kinda like Sunny.

    - Seohyun : Too bad she can't belt her voice ! She has a wide range in "normal" voice and improved a lot since her debut ! Best at live.

    - Taeyeon : Excellent resonance in the voice. Definitly. Most powerful voice of SNSD and she can belt. But her range isn't that exceptional (for a singer) but she still has that perfect resonance. And she can "feel" the song.

    - Tiffany : Can go high with belting. But she is slightly out of beat. She has rythm problems (see when she dances... same with singing.) And the end of her notes are bad. Uncontroled unlike Jessica (genie in a bottle). Kinda weak in medium voice. But pretty low/chest voice.

    ReplyDelete
 

Recent Tweets

Like Pop Reviews Now on Facebook!

Statistics (Since May 2009)

Blog Archive

You're reading an award-winning blog

The K-Pop Writers' Workshop


A workshop for writers of critical pieces on Korean entertainment -- formal reviews, expository essays/Op-eds, and personal essays/Creative Non-Fiction.
Learn from the best in K-Ent writing