Almeng "compoSING of Love" (2014)
An Album a Day is my exploration into the Korean music scene. This podcast will cover mainstream, indie and some underground artists within the scene and provide both factual and opinionated commentary. The biggest benefit to sharing my thoughts this way is that it will hopefully expose you to more great music and exploration of your own.
Unexpected. It’s the first word that comes to mind when reflecting on today’s group, co-ed duo Almeng. The “little eggs” (the meaning of the group’s name in Korean) are K-pop Star 3 alumnus who combine hip-hop and R&B with an unexpected approach. Their short discography, right after the drop.
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Onto the music!
Almeng consists of two members -- miss Choi Rin and mister Lee Haeyong -- born in October in 1990. Unlike our most recent co-ed duo, these two are not siblings but met during their days in college. An Internet search of images of the group gives you no idea what type of music you’ll hear. Even more cleverly, stereotypical expectations will make you believe that once you hear the first few sounds of their music, you know who’s bringing what type of vocal experience to the table. Unless you were consumed with interest from K-pop Star 3 in 2013 and 2014, you’d have no idea that Choi Rin soars in rapping and Lee Haeyong’s grainy singing voice is wonderful. Although these lanes occasionally cross on their October 12, 2014 debut album, “compoSING of Love,” both members know where they excel.
“compoSING of Love” was released with YNB Entertainment and features six tracks, making it a lovely EP. Choi Rin can sing but the woman has range when rapping. Her tone is intriguing and her cadences are worth a rewind, language comprehension doesn’t even matter. Lee Haeyong takes the theme of the album, love, and convinces you that it’s essential to a life well-lived with his gorgeous vocals. And both members joined hands in writing, composing, and producing their debut album, making it a true reflection of their ages and style. They once joked about this, stating in an interview with Korean publication News 1 that because Lee Haeyong had already served in the military, his writing brings more to the music process than similar duos because of life experience, acknowledging their entertainment seniors AKMU in the process.
What I enjoyed most about this album is the fact that they sound mature. This is not a jab at other artists and I don’t want it to be mistaken as such. These artists were already in their early 20s when they made their debut and each single they’ve released since “compoSING of Love” reflects a progression of maturity that comes along with aging. Now in their early 30s, their music resonates most with my personal preferences and similar, more recent experiences. This might not be as enjoyable for a person just entering university or a passive listener to R&B, but it works for older fans.
K-pop fans on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being essential listening and 1 not worth mentioning, the A3Day rating for this album is 5. I’m a bit frustrated that they’ve only released singles since this album, but at least they are still active. Continue to check out the #A3Day Highlights Playlist on Spotify, as it features tracks from today’s albums and past episode’s artists, and I’ll catch you in the next episode, bye y’all.
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