Music Reviews

View all reviews (list)

Labels and artists interested in being featured here may contact Michael McCarthy at cinema365@gmail.com. Follow Michael on Twitter https://twitter.com/paris365.

LAURE SHANG: "BIG UP"

My favorite C-Pop artist has just released a new single. It's called "Big UP" and it certainly kicks up the tempo compared to her more recent work. It's bursting with energy, beats bouncing away, hitting the ground hard like basketballs. And it's in English, so if you normally wouldn't listen to something in Chinese you have nothing preventing you from listening to this one. (Because, obviously, you understand English if you're reading this review. Well, unless you're using Google translate on it!)


September 18, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
KAELA KIMURA: EGG

If Wiki is correct then EGG is Kaela Kimura's 25th single since she started releasing them in 2004. That's pretty impressive, isn't it? Especially for a solo artist! I should also mention that she's released nine studio albums and two compilations. And a live EP as well.


September 17, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
A.Y.A: 2 COOL 4 SCHOOL

Here's something you don't come across every day: an J-Pop album cover with a girl bent over like she's ready for doggy style sex. Maybe that's not what she's trying to imply, but she's certainly trying to draw attention to her rear in any case. Anyway, it might have a hot album cover, but the music is even hotter.


September 14, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
GALAXY EXPRESS: WALKING ON EMPTY

K-Rock outfit Galaxy Express released Walking on Empty, their fourth full-length album, on August 6th of this year and I have a feeling it's doing very well because their previous albums have been such hits -- with music lovers and critics alike -- that they won "Best Rock Album" at the Korean Music Awards in 2009 and "Musician of the Year" in 2011.


September 10, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
Z.HERA: XOX

It's been a year since the now 19 years old, martial arts-trained Z.Hera -- born Ji He Ran -- released her last single, "D Island," but she's finally back with XOX, her highly addictive new mini-album. Fun fact I learned when I googled her before writing this review: she speaks Chinese, English and Japanese in addition to her native Korean.


September 08, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
FTISLAND: PUPPY

If ever there was a song that should not exist...

I've always been a fan of FTISLAND. Certainly my favorite K-Rock group. And while some of their songs have been catchier than others, I have never felt that they've released a truly awful song until now.


September 04, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
LEO IEIRI: 君がくれた夏 (KIMI ga Kureta Natsu)

Leo Ieiri's new single," 君がくれた夏" (KIMI ga Kureta Natsu) (Google: "Summer You Gave Me"), is her second this year and a timely one at that, given the translation of the title. (It came out on 8/19; forgive me for not reviewing it sooner.) I'm sure people will be enjoying it year round, though. She has such a pretty and uplifting voice and this is such a sweet pop rock song. "To love, to love," she sings as the beautiful chorus ends. It's enough to make your heart flutter.


September 02, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
MINMI: HOLOGRAM

MINMI continues on her electro-pop journey with her latest single "Hologram." It starts off on a bad note because her voice is auto-tuned to death and sounds like fingernails on a chalk board to those of us who are sick of that miserable thing. That said, as the song goes on, the beats are so infectious and the production so colorful that you wind up forgetting that her voice is auto-tuned and start to like it. Who knows if I'll like it more or less with repeat listenings, or if I'll even listen to it again after I finish this review, but I think it's catchy enough right now.


September 01, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
T-ARA: SO GOOD

So Good is the lovely T-ARA's 11th mini-album already. Clearly, they work non-stop, making music faster than bees make honey, though their music is just as sweet!


August 28, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
KODA KUMI: SUMMER of LOVE

Koda Kumi is back. Sort of. SUMMER of LOVE is more of a compilation than a new album. It features her best summer-themed songs spanning from 2006 until today, which you could easily compile as a playlist if you own all of her albums already. BUT the real selling point is that it features three brand new tunes, which I will now review. And it just so happens that they're the first three tracks on the album.

1. "EX TAPE"


August 25, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
GIRLS' GENERATION: LION HEART - THE 5TH ALBUM

It's finally here, Girls' Generation's long-awaited 5th album. Hard to believe it's only their 5th though. They're always releasing so much music, juggling careers in Korea and Japan, that you'd think they were up to album number 8 by now. Not that getting up to number 5 is any small accomplishment. It's somewhat rare for a K-Pop act to release this many albums, so many artists here today and gone tomorrow. Seriously, some artists don't even get to make one album, maybe releasing two singles and a mini-album then vanishing.


August 20, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
GIRLS' GENERATION: "LION HEART"

"Lion Heart" is the lead track from Girls' Generation's soon to be released 5th album. This time around, they're trying something a bit different. On August 18th -- the day of this posting -- they're releasing six songs under the title Lion Heart. But tomorrow, the 19th, will see the final six of the album's twelve songs released under the title You Think. It seems more like two separate EPs to me but the tracks are not being released in order, so it's like you get six seemingly random pieces of the puzzle one day and then the other six the next day, completing the puzzle.


August 18, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
f(x): SUMMER SPECIAL

Korean girl group f(x) have finally released some music in Japanese. Considering how hugely popular they are in Korea, it's a wonder they didn't try to crossover into Japan years ago. Then again, their electro-licious music is so tasty it's probably been selling like Pocky in Japan already.


August 14, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
KOREAN MUSIC SINGLE SPOTLIGHT VOLUME ONE

Personally, I much prefer mini-albums and full-length albums over stand alone digital singles. But I guess they're a necessary evil, since they help new artists start building up a fanbase and keep fans of already popular artists thirsty for more in between bigger releases. Since these isolated singles have become so popular during the past couple of years, I thought I should write a review of a handful of those released recently, something I believe I've only done once before. I'll probably start doing it every few weeks now.


August 12, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
dolls: ROCK'N' DOLL

dolls is a new Japanese rock group consisting of three girls who appear to be teenagers. And they're a real rock band, playing their own instruments. (See the teaser video below.) I'm assuming that they write their own songs, too. I mean, if they play their own instruments, why wouldn't they? They obviously have the talent.


August 11, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
AYUMI HAMASAKI: sixxxxxx

Want this summer to get a little hotter? Then you simply must check out this new mini-album by Ayu; it's on fire, each of its six tracks nothing short of red hot.


August 05, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
MAMAMOO: MINI ALBUM VOL. 2 - PINK FUNKY

Mamamoo released their much-praised debut mini-album, Hello, last year and they've been very active ever since, collaborating with Bumkey, K.Will, Geeks, eSNa and Loco, this in addition to releasing various songs on soundtracks and competition releases. Suffice to say they're one of the busiest girl groups in the business of K-Pop.


August 04, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
INFINITE: REALITY

Following numerous solo and sub-unit activities, Infinite makes their big comeback with their fifth mini-album, Reality.


August 01, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
YUKI: 好きってなんだろう…涙 / となりのメトロ - Single [Sukitte Nandarou...Namida + Tonari no Metro]

It's been almost a year since Yuki released Daredemo Lonely, but I'm quite happy to say that she's back with this, her new double A-side single, Sukitte Nandarou...Namida + Tonari no Metro.


July 29, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
D.HOLIC: MINI-ALBUM VOL. 1: CHEWY CHEWY

D.Holic is a South Korean girl group formed in 2014 by H.Mate Entertainment. They debuted on October 23, 2014 with the single "I Don't Know." The group consists of five girls, Hami, Nine, Duri, Danbee and Rena. I wish I could tell you why they're called D.Holic, specifically what the D stands for, but I've just given you all of the information I could find about them when I googled them.


July 28, 2015 / by Paris365 / Read More >
CollectionDX OtakuDX Love is Pop WTF Toy Chogokin.net