TWICE - What is Love?

 
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Release Date: April 9th, 2018
Label: JYP Entertainment
Genre: Dance/Pop/R&B
Length: 5 Songs/16:22


 

01. What is Love? {8.5/10} 
If you haven't checked out my full thoughts on "What is Love?" already, you can see my review here. If you want the TL;DR of it, I thought that this was a catchy and enjoyable title track that fit in with what I was hoping for the song to be like.

02. SWEET TALKER {8/10}
This song is practically the definition of candy pop. It's upbeat and snappy, and it throws several catchy melodies out that can easily get stuck in your head. The bubbly nature of the song works for what I personally expect out of TWICE, though I personally didn't think that the chorus was all that great. Still, the fast-paced raps in the verses in tandem with the video game-like instrumental bits works well, and the buildup towards the chorus was solid. Overall the song is a good way to follow up on "What is Love?" as an opener.

03. HO! {8.5/10}
"HO!" evokes a more doo-wop sort of feel with it's combination of drowned out keyboard chords, simple drumbeat, and sputtering horns. It's another upbeat track, though I'll admit that this one challenged the group's vocals moreso than a lot of their other tracks. The verses are fairly simple, I'd even venture to say dull or bland, but the entire chorus is a roller coaster of high-energy vocals that have you wanting to shout and dance along. The first pre-chorus took me a bit out of the song, but I also feel like that little break was necessary to prepare you for the loudness of the chorus. I really dug the bridge "ooh" background vocals a ton, and the entire run from there on was pretty fantastic. All in all, this song has a great vibe to it and I could have seen this as a title track alternative.

04. DEJAVU {6/10} 
This track wastes no time before throwing a heavier set of instrumentals at you. Booming claps of drums and bass-heavy synth quickly fill in the introduction, though these shift to much lighter tones at the pre-chorus and chorus. This song has a bit of that mish-mash feeling, sounding like two different songs that were slapped together instead of a cohesive piece. This disjointing unfortunately ends up causing the verses to sound much more interesting than the refrain or pre-chorus. The bridge ascension was incredible, and while the dubstep trend is pretty far behind us these days, it worked surprisingly well for me here. The entire last bit had a great instrumental shift - I just wish that the chorus was more interesting so that the shift could have been more engaging overall. 

05. SAY YES {8/10} 
The last track, fittingly, slows things down for a more organic-styled acoustic guitar R&B melody. Soft and buttery vocals are what one should expect, and TWICE doesn't disappoint on those prospects. While the song is overall quieter and diminished, there are lots of catchy pieces still. While listening to this track, I was imagining that it would be a really good way for TWICE to end a live concert with. In a similar vein, this is a good song to end the mini-album on, providing a pretty clear feeling of closure and allowing listeners to end on a softer note rather than leaving on a high. 

 
 

▲ = Favorite song on the album
▼ = Least fav. song on the album
 

 

Summary
TWICE's What is Love? is a quick mini-album that encapsulates a lot of what makes the group such a commercial success. They have catchy songs that are easy to sing along with and keep things simple for the most part. While I personally have been critical on a few aspects of TWICE in the past, this mini-album does prove that the group is progressing vocally. I'm still looking for a progression of them musically, but perhaps that will come up in the next album. Overall, this album is pretty solid and worth checking out if you're a fan of upbeat, poppy jams. 

Overall Score: 8/10