After a long time (almost 3 years I guess), JYJ has released their debut japanese single under Brand New Music. Well, let me congratulate them first. Now that the formalities are out of the way. It’s time to introspect into this single and it’s worth in proving JYJ’s mettle. There was one thing which put me a bit off at first. After making the japanese market wait so long, they could have released a full length album or could have at least included 3 more songs in this single. They could have tried so much like a heart wrenching ballad, but in the end, we get only 2 songs with one original song “Wake Me Tonight” and the other one being the japanese version of “Backseat”. For god’s sake, please make a better MV.Now, it’s time to start the review.
1. Wake Me Tonight- Wake Me Tonight is the lead single released. After being slightly disappointed with JYJ’s latest album, I never expected I would really fall in love with a song called “Wake Me Tonight”. The song has a beautiful arrangement which adds dimension to the song and the production is light years better than the material that they put out in “In Heaven” and significantly better than the production in “Just Us”. The song’s strong point would have to be the melody. The melody is so smooth and beautiful. A ballad version would be really awesome. The song’s arrangement drives on the fantastic melody. The fluttering piano gives a melancholic feeling to the song which is a contrast to the upbeat feeling of the drum beat set. The sprinkling of electric guitars help to break away the monotony and add to the depth of the song. The song may have a beautiful arrangement and melody, but there has to be enough confidence and emotion in the vocals. JYJ really blew it out of the park with their vocals which have improved significantly especially Yoochun. Conviction and confidence are really important for a song like this and JYJ nailed it.
2. Back Seat- Back Seat is a R&B tinged affair which was released as the lead single for their “Just Us” album. The japanese version lacks the smoothness which was present in the korean version due to the language difference. The song begins while having an ethereal quality during Yoochun’s narration. The Verses start off with R&B beats continuing to a chorus laden with piano lines.But, the chorus lacks some kick. The redeeming quality of the song would have to be the middle 8 where there is an inclusion of strings leading to a grandiose vocal performance by Junsu. Adding the electric guitar to the final chorus was a pretty neat idea as well. The song could have been tightened up a bit at the beginning, but Back Seat pales in comparison to Wake Me Tonight.
Score- Wake Me Tonight- 4.5/5 and Back Seat- 3.5/5
Total Score- 8/10
Overall, it was a decent single. Though Back Seat may not be the best track, Wake me tonight makes the single worthy enough to be decent.