The material on this EP is both familiar and fresh, but honestly, I’m just going to graze over this point because even for casual listeners, it’s blatantly obvious that this is an Infinite release. Their material may falter, it may be boring at times, but it’s theirs. They are one of the few groups who, since their debut, have managed to keep a very distinct, and functional, sound. Even my beloved DBSK are guilty of not managing that.
See? When all these little problems, problems that shouldn’t even exist in the first place, are solved, or don’t exist at all, it gives us more room to notice the good things, and I spend less time complaining about everything.
But the best thing about this is that though the material most definitely doesn’t go through you, it doesn’t tie you up and lock you up in a dark box either. It’s fun, effortless, enjoyable material. Yes, even the ballads. The material carries Infinite, yes, but material that Infinite follows very well.
“The Chaser” is Infinite inside out, but instead of being a carbon copy of a previous single, which it could’ve easily been, it’s more like a combination, and a reflection of what their sound really is. If this were food, it would be a four seasons shake. Taken apart, the individual fruits are great and all, but put them together and somehow they taste better than they would’ve been if you drank four different fruit shakes. The Infinite synths are there, the rap part is ever so slightly familiar, and the melody is so well-done. Another thing I like so much about Infinite is how they make a potentially heavy song very light and flow-y, without loosing character and punch.
“Feel So Bad” is surprisingly cheery, something I wasn’t really expecting when I heard the opening line, but the melody is a gorgeous kind of upbeat, and the harmonies going on are pretty without being excessive. I could say the same for “In The Summer”, actually. I love how the drum line gives punch to a potentially boring song, and the delivery really does match their vocals. Gorgeous melody, gorgeous arrangement, gorgeous everything, basically.
I honestly didn’t like “Only Tears” when I first heard it a few days ago, because while it had its moments, I found it boring. But when I heard the entire album, I realized that this isn’t the type of song you can just listen to and expect to understand -- it’s a song that works best in relation to all the other tracks. Hearing it now, with the rest of the album in mind, it not only matches and sound, but complements it as well. I personally don’t like it, but it’s a gorgeous album track, I’ll give it that.
The electric guitar line was a welcome, and gorgeous addition to the already stunning “니가좋다”. This song is basically the epitome of the entire EP -- it’s fun, it’s light, but it’s like that because the technical elements, the arrangement, the melody and the instrumental, were all done effortlessly. It reminds me of an Infinite version of BEAST’s “Freeze”, which I adored as well. “Freeze” in the sense that it’s the upbeat, fun, song, but Infinite in the sense that the arrangement takes center stage. No doubt, my favorite song off the album.
I was a little iffy about this EP ending with a ballad, but looking at the bigger picture, this is the last of only two ballads on the entire package. “With…” is nothing special, honestly. But I like how they managed to sneak in a few very Infinite elements amidst your generic pretty piano line and sappy chorus. It’s the little details like the drum kit they used, some synths here and there, and an electric guitar line hidden under all the screaming during the chorus. Other than that though, it’s a very generic ballad, and not really something I’d rave about.
I originally wanted to put the Junsu review out before this, but considering that one, it's nowhere near done yet, and two, I just reviewed the single yesterday, I'll have to push the album review back to maybe tonight or tomorrow. I'm working on it though, and I want it done by this afternoon.