f(x)'s Vocal Prowess



Yes, I have finally gotten around to writing another commentary - this time for f(x). No, not the algebra function, the girl group.

It took me quite some time to be able to even start writing this because of how new f(x) are. 2 singles, 6 recorded tracks and only a handful of performances but what makes it worse is that Victoria, their leader and the oldest member, hardly got any lines I could refer to in writing this. Thankfully the one example I needed came recently, in the form of their rendition of SNSD's Kissing You. But we'll get to that later.

f(x) are very, very far from SNSD in terms of vocal ability - there may be good and outstanding vocals in SNSD but if you take the percentages, f(x) clearly win. They're more like the younger, more contemporary version of CSJH, just like how SHINee is the younger version of DBSK. But unlike SHINee, I can order their vocals from best to worse if you give me time and more solo stuff from each member. Sadly, I don't have either right now so I won't. lol.

Their only two singles as a little background before I start firing insults and praises. Hahah.

LaChaTa (September 2009-ish)

Chu~♡ (November 2009-ish)


OK. Shall we?

Victoria

Victoria is being pushed as the dancer of the band but even before she got in she got a ton of publicity - appearing on Rain's video for Samsung + the 2008 Olympics and even SHINee's Replay. As I said earlier, Victoria was the reason why it took so long for me to write this commentary, but I think it was somewhat worth the wait. It's not that the girl can't sing and it's not that her voice is ugly, the problem is that her vocals are very weak. She doesn't have a gorgeous voice with no technique nor does she have a mediocre voice with a lot of technique - she has a plain, untrained voice with hardly any technique. She doesn't know when to breathe, where to push and how to sing. With a little work she can be decent, like Yunho.

(solo at 0:36-0:40)


Sulli

I don't like Sulli, and I don't like her a lot. lol. I know aa-chan is gonna kill me for this but whatever. There's a Filipino slang/Taglish (Tagalog+English) term for her voice - Pa-cute. It basically means that she's trying too hard to deliberately be cute. It works for publicity but when you get down to the music it's kinda pathetic. There's this concept that all pop-based girl groups have to have a cutesy/just a pretty face member and I hate that (*ahem* Sandara *ahem*). I hate those members and I hate the fact that it doesn't happen often in boybands with talent (*ahem* DBSK, SHINee, Big Bang, 2AM *ahem*) but just HAS to happen in girl groups whether they have any semblance of talent or not. Why? Because it brings down the group musically. If Sulli stopped being cutesy, she'd have a pretty decent voice. Not fantastic or anything but competent and I've learned to accept the fact that Korean girl group members won't always have brilliant voices.

(Solos at 0:36-0:40 and 1:26-1:31)


Krystal

I don't like Krystal either - never have, never will. One because she gets too much publicity just for being Jessica SNSD's sister and two because she isn't as good as everyone says she is. She isn't a Junsu who has an excessive but at the same time great voice, she just has an excessive one. It's squeaky but not in the Sulli way. That duet with Luna on their 'first single'? She practically got pulverized by Luna. Yeah, sure she can hold a melody and yeah sure she can sing but the timbre of her voice is very plain. When she does all these vocal gymnastics she can't pull them off because her voice is shrill. It's shrill and it gets even shrill-er when she hits high notes. Personally, ONE BIG NO.

(Krystal's the one on the right)


Amber

Amber is the tomboy rapper in the band who looks like a guy who looks like a girl. She is in fact a girl. (I made that up one day. Works, right?) I've been told by several friends that she's a good rapper but obviously I don't know what I'm talking about when it comes to rap so let's skip that altogether. When I heard Lachata I though she should've gotten more lines because I thought she could sing pretty damn well - better than SOME of the girls in the group. For the longest time that was my impression of Amber - the girl who didn't get that many lines in songs but could sing pretty damn well. But then I heard a live performance of Chu and that impression was completely changed. She has a voice, yes, and to a certain extent she can sing but she can't sing live - her vocals need more technique. She's a lot like Minho SHINee and I mean A LOT.

(Amber's singing solo is at 1:18)


Luna

Luna, Luna, Luna. I have one word for Luna's voice - spectacular. It completely pulverizes every other member but her voice isn't excessive not does she try too hard to make it sound good, it's just the way it is. From the very beginning Luna caught my ear - the first line of Lachata was just perfectly-executed and brilliantly-sung. It's very uncommon that you have someone who can sing this well in a pop band this new but of course I wasn't around when SHINee first sprouted out so I don't know. ANYWAY, Luna not only has a nice voice, SHE KNOWS HOW TO SING. HAVE YOU HEARD THAT HIGH NOTE SHE DID ON YOU ARE MY DESTINY?? Krystal is ABSOLUTELY NO MATCH FOR THIS GIRL. The timbre of her voice is to die for. There are times when she does sound older than her age (aka when singing Whitney) BUT, she can sing without sounding older. It's not excessive but it's rich - high notes sound GORGEOUS. It's stunning, spectacular and I could use every possible praise word for it. You have to hear to believe - I get goosebumps just thinking of her voice.


Comments? Disagreements? Fire them away in the comments section. BUT FOLLOW THE EFFIN' RULES - RESPECT. In short, NO BASHING PLEASE.

42 comments:

  1. This post is awesome! =D

    Luna and Amber definitely can sing, no doubt about that. Meanwhile as for Krystal, she's ok but well she only got famous because of Jessica. TBH I rather see Jessica than seeing her on TV. I don't know.. IMO Krystal can sing but Luna is better. WAYYYYY BETTER. I'm not sure if it's just me or Krystal is using her nasal voice to sing?? =S

    Luna somehow "buried" Krystal in 'You Are My Destiny'. HAHAHAHAHA.

    And Vicky. Poor Vicky only managed to steal the spot light on the recent "Lollipop" feat. MIC. Her voice isn't that good though. She's like a pinch of spice that you add on top of the dish to make the food taste good.. I'm talking about her acrobatic skills. She can dance but her dancing skills are like.. more on a acrobatic side or something?? idk.

    And Sulli. I don't know how to hate her. Hahah.

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  2. Yay! Haha. What I've been waiting for. Same opinions as mine. :)

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  3. I agree with almost everything, except the "They're more like the younger, more contemporary version of CSJH, just like how SHINee is the younger version of DBSK"

    OMG! f(x) never will be like CSJH! NEVER! CSJH is way better in everything! f(x) never will be able to sing an acapella like CSJH! And I'm not a bias, since I'm a Jumping BoA and a blackjack lol. And SHINee is so... So... I don't like than. Seriously.

    Krystal is a bad singer like her sister... Jessica was trainee for seven years and I don't see any results, but whatever...

    SulLi is all cute. She is a dancer and a cute girl. Just it.

    But I have to disagree with you about Luna. Yeah, she is the best singer there, but she is not THAT awesome! She can be awesome, but she isn't yet.

    Victoria is so underrated as Luna... I don't know what to say about her too xD LOL @ "decent like YunHo" xDDD TOTTALY AGREE XD

    I'm Brazilian, so I'm sorry if you don't understand my English xD

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    1. You never heard Jessica singing as a 12 year old girl so I don't see how could you see any results. And besides if she was such a bad singer she wouldn't be a main vocal in SNSD she would be lead vocal or just vocalist - but no, she's main so suck it.

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  4. Ouch since I'm such a fan of Dara that statement really hit home lol I know she will never have the greatest musical talents and I know for sure you may not like her in the future so theres no need to further my thoughts on that hehe. For me all I gotta say is that as a group they work really well performance wise but sometimes a lot of the members have more lines and doesn't balance out the group as much. I wished they just let Amber sing instead of making her rap because of the type of group they are who supposedly excels in vocals so the rap just seem really unneeded. When they dance they are very good too hehe. I am not to into F(X) because of the songs they have released I mean they are good don't get me wrong but they just aint my taste. Your analysis seems very on point but im so noob at vocal skills so I don't know how to differentiate but anyway yeah good group gonna see what they got for the future.

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  5. Let me post what someone said about f(x) Krystal.

    In terms of singing, Luna pwns her. In terms of cuteness, Sulli pwns her. In terms of dancing, Victoria pwns her. In terms of popularity, Amber pwns her.

    And not only may aa-chan kill you for not liking Sulli but so will I. Sulli and Victoria are my most favourites then Amber. The other two come last.

    http://nynyonline.wordpress.com/2010/01/17/express-my-views-2-fans/#more-1394
    Hope you comment on my new entry!

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    1. I now this is an old post, but 4 years later - Krystal is the top member of f(x). She gets more lines than Luna, she's in central position most of the time, she was in hit dramas, she collaborated with other artists. . . .and her and her sister have a TV show. So, yeah, Krystal pwned everyone.

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  6. WOW!I thought the same of f(x) even after you wrote this...I mean when I heared Lachata the only thing that cought my attention was Luna's voice, & YEP THE BEGINNING WAS AEWESOME! that hoarse voice at the last word of the first line was SPECTACULAR!! xD=D that (for me) was the cherry of that song!

    & about this: "Amber is the tomboy rapper in the band who looks like a guy who looks like a girl. She is in fact a girl. (I made that up one day. Works, right?)"
    ...IT REALLY WORKS!! hahah I like Amber, she's nice [xD] but yep!

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  7. Misunnie - LOL at all your comments. LUNAAAAAAAAA.

    ice princess - grabe ma'am. GRABE.

    Saddy - I mean concept-wise and the fact that they're better than a lot of other idol groups right now. But yes, CSJH are in a league of their own, like DBSK. Hahah.

    Ed - I think the reason why they don't make Amber sing is because she doesn't have technique yet. Her voice is nice, yes, but she doesn't know how to use it.

    nynyonline - *surrenders* OK OK! lol. Kill me if you must.

    geju93 - glad to know you agree with me!

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  8. agreed on almost nearly everything. nearly.

    because trust me, amber is lightyears away from being a decent rapper.

    god, her rapping in chu, lachata and chocolate love make me want to skip those parts and immediately forward them.

    amber has got the voice but she has no flow whatsoever. hyuna, despite her helium voice, can rap even better than her.

    i admit she can sing, but she falls flat in the rap department.

    i suggest sm have her as a singer instead, because girl can really sing and do all kpop idol groups these days need to have a rapper? if sm really wants to differentiate f(x) from the horde of girl groups these days they can remove rapping as part of their resumé. it's obvious rapping isn't her forte and it will be so much better if amber had her position as a singer instead of having to fill up the expected slot of the rapper within the group.

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    1. HEY! amber can so rap. besides having a decent voice she raps like a breeze- captivates me strikingly. she's my biased- maybe i suggest u do more research on her? i apologize if i disturbed u but still... at least she possesses talent

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    2. Need i remind you this comment was made in 2010. Since then all the members have improved in terms of their vocal ability

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  9. I remember that SM's vision and mission when f(x) was formed is to be the best Asian dance group. But remember that we are in music industry, therefore the song and music is a must.

    Well, once again I agree with you, Nikki. As a vocal group, f(x) is just Luna, and Luna is "singing soul" of f(x). So, if all thing is necessary, why do they need Amber as rapper? If she has vocal capability, why don't SM let her sing? Is it just because her tomboy appearance plot her as rapper? I think it's too shallow.

    The reason that I still watch f(x) however because of Sulli and Victoria. They are gorgeous, frankly speaking, I'm just a boy, hehehehe....

    Nikki, sometimes I think that Sulli is prepared to be "second Yoona". What do you think about it?

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  10. I definitely agree with you - Luna's voice is spectacular. I just watched their new song "Mr. Boogie" and I was already impressed by Luna simply because she's the one doing the adlibs. I wasn't satisfied so I searched videos of her singing and tada! I found a lot of videos. Yey! All I've got to say is that she deserves more than to be in f(x)! I mean, she dances and sings well, she could actually go solo. And for a while I thought that she was their leader. Her voice makes her stand out from the group.

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  11. Victoria can sing, but its hard to tell because she doesn't get that many lines. The most i heard her sing was in NU ABO (well technically she was chanting -_-). Plus Victoria, needs training. I don't think Sulli sounds bad, she can sing and i don't mind listening to her voice. Krystal, maybe if she stayed in her range, then maybe she would be pretty good or decent. Ahaaa, yeah i agree with you both Jung sisters are shrill when they sing. I also think Krystal doesn't know how to breathe too well because when i was listening to a song that she was singing there were some awkward pauses. Amber, i had no idea she could sing so well. I was listening to her, and i was like whoa, she can sing XD. Amber is like a triple threat (Rapping, singing, and dancing). As much as i don't like Luna (herself), i am inlove with her voice. SHE IS AMAZING, I HAVE ALWAYS DREAMED OF SINGING LIKE THAT TT_TT!!!! She always impresses me and i was surprised when i first heard her because not many kpop female singers are that good. I really love reading your reviews (their amazing) and i was wondering if you could do a vocal Prowess on 4minute or Afterschool...i'm dying to know what your opinions are :)

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    1. Well I (personally) think that Victoria's voice ruined the whole song (NU ABO) when they were performing live... I knew there're so many actions/motions in the song and they really get to move a lot. But still, Victoria was just like yelling the song instead of singing (she had lack of air and she has to breathe a lot)....So I think she was kinda awful...

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  12. f(x) is all about concept. something like snsd's 1st few promotional songs. except f(x) has weaker vocals than snsd had when they were newbies.
    in general f(x)'s vocals are still unstable. luna is better than many other girl groups of their generation but i wouldn't say she's spectacular. i agree with everyone who says that krystal's voice is a little shrill but other than luna there's no one in f(x) who has a decent singing voice. they have no choice but to let krystal sing the hook and stuff. it wouldn't make much of a difference if they give it to sulli but they just chose to let krystal sing those parts. jessica is not fantastic but her vocal ability is lightyears away from krystal's.
    the members of f(x) are cute and nice to look at but their music does not do much for me.
    every single that they've released since their debut is more or less the same. their songs are catchy but not memorable. f(x) is living out the stereotype that idol groups only produce crappy songs with little or no depth to the lyrics. the only redeeming point is that the songs are always catchy.
    i'm not attacking f(x). SM doesn't need to come up with solid songs and they still can sell considerably well. so they are successful in a way.

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  13. f(x)'s vocals hmm... there is talent but I feel like there are better.

    Luna: She is easily the best in the group but she is not an amazing singer. The problem is that her tone is indistinct and she is too technical. When she sings, she focuses so much on how she sings that she loses sight of the emotional connection of the song. I think if she didn't belong to SM, she would not get nearly as much recognition for her vocals. I much prefer other idols singers like TomTom (look up supervocaltomtom on youtube and compare), Navi, and Davichi who are able to convey emotion and still maintain technique. She is very talented though and I don't want to take away from that.

    Krystal: I actually think she has the most pleasant tone in the group when she sings within her comfort zone. She is also a fairly stable singer which is good. I think her biggest problem is her technique and given lines that sometimes don't suit her range.

    Sulli: There are times when she's not that bad,and her voice has a nice soft quality to it but she is not a natural singer and she is lacking. Her vocals are standard idol group material to be honest in which you look pretty and sing well enough to get by.

    Victoria: Based off of her singing, I feel like she was not put in this group to sing. Her vocal strength is weak and she doesn't sound nice when she sings. Her accent also tends to be more pronounced when she sings live and she has problems staying on pitch.

    Amber: She's a rapper but her tone is actually not that bad. If she got proper training, I think she could have been decent. Even so, I'd put her just behind Krystal in terms of vocal capability.

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  14. I love you. Seriously. You totally read my mind. When i read this i was crying like: "Someone who finally gets me"

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  15. VICTORIA - Her singing is pretty goood! She just needs a bit more practice, and some more DAM LINES!! She hardly gets any lines and it pisses me off cos shes my favorite and I LOVE HER!!

    SULLI - How in da world can you not like Sulli. Are you like retarded or somethin? Shes the prettiest thing ever!!! Her voice is also really good to. Man, you better be having second thoughts...

    KRYSTAL - Now you need some dam help!!! How can you not like Krystal, along with Sulli as well? God man you piss me off? I do agree though, she does get more publicity then you would think but hey, she works hard and she has an amazing amount of talent as she is the youngest...

    AMBER - Now, Ill tell you this now, there is NO WAY you can not like Amber. She is da COOLEST!!! I know she dresses up as a boy most of the time, but that's what makes her unique!! That's what make Amber... Amber... AND HER VOICE IS OMGG!!! SO GEWWWWDDDDDDD!!! She should sing more normal singing then rap because her voice in just singing is actually pretty good, too

    LUNA - Now out of the group, she has da best voice, BY FAR!!! And I love her sooo much!!! SHE IS SOOOO CUTE!!!!...And hot, XD. Her voice is amazing, and I believe she should have way more popularity then the amount she has right now...

    OVERALL, I LOVE THEM ALL SOOOO MUCH!!!! THEY ARE SOOOO TALENTED AND SOO HOOOOOOOTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!! They make the best GROUP!!! XD

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    2. actually,sulli low note is nice to hear. very nice..krystal ost in my lovely girl i cry.. luna dont comment the best. victoria very kind lovely person..do watch sassy girl..

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  16. I don't get it.
    First you say in terms of percentage F(x) wins comparatively to SNSD, but then you can only point out 1 member that is effectively a good singer?
    So F(x)- 1/5
    SNSD- 4/9 (Taeyeon, Jessica, Seohyun, Tiffany- you can disagree of course)
    And you can do the math if you like...
    And another thing: especially when I was reading your thoughts about Krystal, I noticed that you may be somewhat biased. "I don't like Krystal either - never have, never will. One because she gets too much publicity just for being Jessica SNSD's sister(...)"- here. If you're actually judging them based on their vocal abilities that shouldn't get in the way. You have to be impartial when you're writting this kind of commentary.

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    1. actually krystal was casted before Jessica but krystals parents said she was to young so to take Jessica and wait for krystal to get older its not krystals fault that she gets attention because of her sister and shes not bad at all

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  17. thank you so much, now i know i'm not alone here. you and i have really same thoughts about this.

    Sulli - idk about this girl, she's only acting cute everytime i see her on TV or internet. She doesn't put effort in both singing and dancing departments, and SM trolled this group to be the best Asia's Pop Dance Group. They can't reach what they want if there's a supermassive blackhole in them.

    Victoria - you can judge her singing live on 'Best Couple' variety show, she's really lacking, but her dancing skill is very good i think, if you compare her with Sulli and Krystal

    Krystal - She did Jessica's part in Kissing You, she shouted like a kitty and i really didn't get what she was doing right there. She still lacks of singing skill, i don't like the color of her voice either. Sometimes, she's unstable in some notes and i never think she's a good singer, yet SM put this girl as lead singer. i don't know what SM's doing

    Amber - I still don't get why SM put this llama boss as a rapper. She's my bias, yes, she is but her rap sucks very bad, she's not really good in rapping department. She should be an acoustic singer, i think. a solo debut just like 4minute's Hyuna will be a good choice since Amber can play guitar, drums, she can sing well and dance like a boss plus she can speak in many languages. all in all, i just want her to sing in acoustic feel, that would be awesome

    Luna - no need to ask about her, she's very good in singing although sometimes she's out of the place when harmonizing with the others, that's not good for vocal group. But seriously, she's the life for f(x) in singing industry, she can dance very well too. She sang just like pro when she was on immortal song. i just like seeing her

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    3. I thought I was the weird one for disliking Sulli's eyes. I'm just warming up to fx due to khuntoria so I can only really use looks. I find Victoria and Luna the most attractive. I dont see how Sulli is cute. Probably just me...

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    4. amber write their song.amber also had been mc in show.she dorky..had manny friend,ailee min,hyuna,.she also rap for henry and zhoumi. ad krystal and jessica the best sibling in the industry.. jessica is kick out. shes stay koz krystal

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  18. I completely agree with you, and I also think that the lack of talent in some girl groups is pretty pathetic. To the music market, girl groups are supposed to be desirable, while boy bands are also supposed to be hot while being extremely talented. It's actually quite sexist and unfortunate when you think about it.

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  19. I like all member in f(x) , I agree with Sulli voice and Krystal voice and I also think that all members in f(x) is pretty.... :B

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  20. i think your standards are very high..you are making me curious with what you are because your so sure with your article..hope your more talented than sulli,krystal and victoria so that it will not turn out to be be a shame on you...

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    1. I really agreed to this. You guys have such a high standards. You all sounded like you're better than them, why dont you try to enter SM and be in a girl band instead? See for yourself how much hardwork they are giving for their career!

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    2. Sigh...the classic, if-you-arent-better-than-them-dont-judge-them argument...

      They can be 'talented' and 'hardworking' all they want. They can be better singers and dancers than everyone here. All of those are moot points.
      From a universal vocal standard, most of fx's members are not considered good. That's what the blog is saying. Hardwork, talent, experience doesnt justify subpar universal standards.
      Of course, the blog was in 2010 so they might've improved since then. I personally dislike songs/vocals that sounds like they could've be autotuned. Unfortunately, their electronic genre implies all their vocal might be autotuned.

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    3. That is true.....lol..Articles like these are still around? I think they should disappear...The author should look closely at themselves to see if they are sometimes ''pa-cute''..I found it very offensive because now sulli is more mature and she said that herself that she would like to be called mature not cute anymore....Technically, Sulli probably did purposely be cute but it was probably what SM wanted her to do since she was still young..Practically...This is not an article at all...rather a judgmental statement....Using the the words pathetic and the statement: ''I've learned that korean girls will ever have good voices''(or whatever) It's not very nice....I mean....Not to be mean, but...for you, the author, do you have a nice voice? would you make it through the auditions? And also....Sulli worked so hard but always failed....she always cried and felt that she was slowing the group down....Shes good enough, thats why she finally debuted....Accept that please....Articles that are like this, are just judging who is better....I LOVE ALL MEMBERS, BUT SULLI IS MY BIAS...

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  21. To be honest, I don't think f(x) are really that good at singing, and I'm a fan. Luna is the best at singing, but I think SM are pushing that role too much. They give her high notes that she clearly can't handle, even though Krystal and Sulli have also done high notes on a similar if not better level.

    As for Amber, I wouldn't say she sucks at rapping. She's good at rapping but SM keep giving her terrible raps. She is definitely the 2nd best at singing. She has a unique voice, but they don't even let her sing the chorus. She was the only one chosen to be a trainee based on her voice.

    And Victoria just can't sing, I can't believe that there are people who would disagree.

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  22. Plain biasness.

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  23. dunno, i think krystal has the best voice at this point

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  24. I will love to read another article like this about f(x) skills now *____*

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  25. I love Krystal, but YEA, I think SM is favoring her more than the other members....Even SULLI, THE GIANT BABY OF sm, ISNT VERY WELL TREATED IN sm...I mean c'mon...krystal has a tv show, is in a collaborated group, even has more lines than anyone else....if i was in a group and i found out that one of the members were liked more, i'd quit...

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  26. amber cant speak korean at first that's why...please understand..go amber

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  27. f(x) seems to be not good in vocals but that can be improved. don't judge them already. krystal has a good voice that's why she's the lead singer of the group. luna? no doubts. her voice is amazing. sulli... she has a soft alto voice, i don't think she's pa cute because she is really cute in the first place. amber well, she can rap but i know she is having a hard time pronouncing her part because she's not purely korean. i wish sm let her sing instead. lastly victoria... we all know that singing is not her field, it's dancing. we should not be surprised if her voice is considered to be one of the weakest voice in f(x) because sm focused on her dancing and flexibility skills.

    so yeah. don't judge them already.

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