BoA – Girls On Top / MOTO

July 20, 2015 at 1:22 PM | Posted in BoA | 5 Comments

BoA – Girls On Top / MOTO

2. Do You Love Me? (Duli Hamkke)
3. Girls On Top
4. Oneul Geutael Bondamyeon (If You Were Here)
5. Love Can Make A Miracle
6. Addiction (Jipchak)
7. Freak In Me
8. Gongjung Jeongweon (Garden In The Air)
9. I Spy
10. Can’t Let Go
11. Heroine (Siseon)
12. Sum.. (Breathe Again)
13. Gaeulpyeonji
14. Girls On Top (Chinese ver.)

♦ ♦ ♦

Girls On Top is the fifth Korean album by South Korean singer BoA, released on June 24, 2005. On August 17, 2005 she released the repackage album MOTO.

Can you believe it, I overlooked this album. I’m sorry. Luckily I can tell I really like how energetic MOTO is, it was definitely a good decision to add this one and put it as the first track too. It’s filled with beats, synths and very solid and mature vocals, this kicks bottom.

I believe Do You Love Me? (Duli Hamkke) was also part of the repackage (and not of the original tracklist), am I right? It’s a more mellow R&B song and Bobo gets the chance to show off a more soulful side of her voice. It features a handclap beat and acoustic guitar riffs, and somewhere in the middle those sped up sections were a nice addition.

I always thought Girls On Top was the perfect track and I used to listen to it all the time around the time the album was released. BoA gives this song her all and at times she sounds much older than she actually was at the time, but I mean that in a positive way. From beginning to end, this synthy track stands out and it’s one of the gems on this album. (Yes, even the rap sections)

Oneul Geutael Bondamyeon (If You Were Here) is the first ballad on the album and I think it’s a very beautiful one! It’s soft in the verses, but it gets more powerful in the chorus. The background vocals work very well and BoA does some amazing adlibs, which add to the emotional character of the song. Beware if you cry easily!

I was surprised to find another ballad here, but Love Can Make A Miracle makes more use of orchestral influences while the previous track was more of a pop ballad. It’s another beautiful track that emphasizes how powerful BoA’s vocals are and how well she knows what to do with them, I love it.

Addiction (Jipchak) brings back the beats and this time in a rather bouncy way, also with some additions that sound kind of brassy (but I believe it comes froma  keyboard, it’s still nice though). It’s a very smooth track and not too ‘in your face’ after too quite emotional ballads, it’s actually quite interesting.

I didn’t really like the intro for Freak In Me, but the rest of the track isn’t very catchy either. I mean, it’s nice, it’s not a bad song, but it’s just decent and the flow is a little off for me.

Ah, I think I may like Gongjung Jeongweon (Garden In The Air) a lot! It’s so different form the rest of the tracks. It’s a bit more on the jazzy side with a catchy piano tune near the end and BoA’s vocals fit the feel of it very well, but then there’s also this unexpected electric guitar solo that I love. One of the better songs!

I feel I Spy is a bit generic and too much inspired by songs like MOTO and Girls On Top, but then less memorable. It is catchy, but after some of the other tracks it doesn’t feel that special. That middle section was a bit weird, but funny weird I guess? xD

For Can’t Let Go, BoA tried some mellow R&B ballad sound. I disagree with some fellow reviewers that her adlibbing is overdone. Ofcourse I respect everyone’s opinion, but the adlibbing is one thing that I actually like about BoA, not many people can do it right. I think she gave this all she had and it turned out amazingly well!

That guitar riff that plays throughout Heroine (Siseon) gives it something Latin and unique that I haven’t heard in any other track. I think that’s what saves this from being generic again, but BoA’s singing melodies in the chorus are very pleasant too. Not among the favorites, but definitely nice.

I got some ‘THE END Soshite and…’ vibes from the beginning of Sum.. (Breathe Again) because of the sound of rain and soft music opening the song. But then again this song was there first. It has quite a typical 2005 ballad sound if you ask me, but it’s a very beautiful track. BoA can always do nice ballads, right? It needs a little time, but eventually it’s breathtaking.

Now this is an interesting way to end the original album… Gaeulpyeonji features BoA singing acapella and some birds chirping in the background. She sings a lovely melody and I wished this would be longer than just 0:50, I was just getting into it!

Closing this version of the album, here we go one more time with Girls On Top (Chinese ver.). Is there anything this girl can’t do?! Korean, Japanese, English and now Chinese, wow. Ofcourse I love this track, probably in every language, and BoA’s Chinese sounds pretty good for a layman like me. Kickass!

The strange thing with this album is that there are some very good and catchy tracks, some amazing ballads and then a couple of generic songs. There are absolutely no bad songs here (can BoA even do a really bad song?), but sometimes the songs sound too much alike or they lack something that makes them really stand out. Those generic songs are what makes this a decent effort instead of another amazing one. I’m already surprised by the fact that this album was better than I expected (usually I don’t listen to older stuff), but there could’ve been more.

Favorite songs: MOTO | Do You Love Me? (Duli Hamkke) | Girls On Top | Oneul Geutael Bondamyeon (If You Were Here) | Love Can Make A Miracle | Gongjung Jeongweon (Garden In The Air) | Can’t Let Go | Sum.. (Breathe Again) | Girls On Top (Chinese ver.)

3½ stars

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