Single of the Week: SNSD/Girls' Generation - "ALL MY LOVE IS FOR YOU"

SNSD are back in Japan, and though the video for this was released ages ago, the actual recording only came out this week. Which is the reason why it's not only eligible for single of the week, but also why I even chose it in the first place.

It's very difficult to review a recording based solely on a music video track or a live performance, for the simple reason that it's not the original recording. These things differ from critic to critic, and it's more of a personal stand than it is a universally-accepted standard, because there are instances where the visual delivery is just as important as the auditory aspects (e.g., 2NE1, Big Bang). But my stand is perfectly highlighted in songs like "ALL MY LOVE IS FOR YOU"

Watching the video, the only part of the song that I really liked was the melody, but I thought it was brought down by a boring instrumental that lacked both kick and beauty. Hearing the recording, I realized that the only part of that sentence that I got right was the melody, because it really is beautiful. The verses are very laid back, but sound almost hopeful, and the chorus, which is actually partially a chorus (yay!), is ever so slightly epic, courtesy of well, the chorus. But it's the fragile kind of beautiful -- the producers have to make the right decisions in terms of accompaniment, vocal treatment, and over-all production. Everything will just disintegrate if they don't.

There are two things that a fragile melody like this needs -- the first is kick to give it some conviction, and the second is depth to make it less sharp on the ears, and to support the fragile melody. And I think it's safe to say that the arrangement literally pulled it together and delivered.

The piano line isn't extremely obvious because the mix favored the vocals over it, but it's understated in it's beauty, and it gives the song that subtle kick. The strings are similar because they do take as much center stage as they can, giving it a much needed kick, but unlike other string sections, this one is simple to start with. It's structured more like a drone or a bass line than it is an actual melody, so it really has no reason to hit you over the head. Which is perfect.

But my favorite part of the song has got to be the drum line. You probably all know that I love a good drum line because my dad is a drummer, but as far as K-Pop (or K-Pop in Japan) drum lines go (at least the ones that exist), the one on this track is probably one of my favorites this year. This is the part of the song that gives it half of the depth I was looking for, without compromising the crispness that a drum line needs. While the strings gave it the kick, which is more like citrus or mint, the drums give it depth, like milk or cream. Those drum rolls are gorgeous -- they're forceful and confident, but so, so graceful. My favorite kind of drum roll!

So where does the other half of the depth come from? From the production, which is gorgeous without being generic. It's neither overproduced, nor is it underproduced -- it's just right. The way everything was put together, the way each element sounds in relation to the other, literally makes the song glow. There's no other way to describe this song, really, because it really does glow. Hearing it not only puts a smile on your face, it goes that extra mile and makes you all nice a fuzzy inside.

I love a pretty song when I hear one, and I think a lot of you know that. "ALL MY LOVE IS FOR YOU" is probably as pretty as anyone can get. For now, at least.


  1. thanks for the review! I think this song is great too :)

  2. Hey thanks for the review :)
    I was looking for this song all week long!
    Agreeeeee! I'm really into the drum line.. most fave one :)


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