OVERALL THOUGHTS

“Alive” is a solid effort from Big Bang. None of the songs measure up to the Big Bang classics such as “Lies,” “Haru Haru” and “Heaven” but it’s definitely better than their last EP. The album is very consistent – there is no bad song, but at the same time there isn’t one song that stands out and calls for multiple repeats. All of the melodies are pleasant and the production is great across the whole album. The group has definitely shown their growth in versatility and improvement in vocal and emotive abilities throughout the album. I am extremely excited that they have planned a world tour over the rest of the year and hope that I can make it to one of their shows! They are definitely one of the best K-Pop artists out there and I’m very happy that they are getting so much attention around the world.

TRACK BY TRACK: 

Intro (Alive) – 9/10

This is an energetic introduction to the album. Despite not understanding the exact lyrics, I can feel the sentiment and positivity. After everything the group went through last year, the group is alive and ready to continue their journey. The sound is reminiscent of some older Big Bang songs and the production is great. I wish this was a full song and not just an intro!

Blue – 9/10

It’s a little weird to go from such a positive intro to a mellower song. I definitely think that “Blue” is the best song on the album. It took me a couple listens/video views to really get into it, but I love the feel of the song and it has a great melody. One thing I love about Big Bang is how good the members are at emoting through their voices. I can’t understand most of what they’re saying, but I can still feel everything they are singing. The chorus has a catchy hook and they all sound great. I look forward to a performance!

Love Dust – 7/10

“Love Dust” has a Europop feel, which I of course love. It’s got a positive melody and is one of those songs that you naturally start bopping your head to. I like the verses more than the chorus though. The chorus is a little underwhelming and doesn’t really match the build-up in the music. The middle 8 is definitely the best part of the song in my opinion.

Bad Boy – 8/10

When I first heard this song (through watching the music video), I wasn’t that into it. However, the song grew on me really fast and I now really like it. I think I was too distracted by G-Dragon’s awful hair when watching the video to give the song my full attention. I love the chill vibe and the beats sound great when using headphones. I love the use of piano and its subtle R&B feel. This is definitely one of my favorites off the EP!

Ain’t No Fun – 9/10

Love the 90’s feel of the song! From the second the music started, I knew I would like this song. The feel of the song reminds me a bit of “Fool” from Big Bang’s Hot Issue EP released back in 2007, which is still a favorite of mine. I love the chorus and this is definitely a standout for me on the album! Can’t wait to see the MV and how they perform it.

Fantastic Baby – 7/10

This song sounds like a Black Eyed Peas song. The instrumental sounds extremely American. It’s a good club track and is probably the most predictable song on the album with a simple hook and a generic electropop vibe. The whole feel reminds me of 2NE1’s “I Am The Best” and GD&TOP’s “High High,” which isn’t a bad thing. It’s definitely catchy and rounds out the album well, but it’s not my favorite.

Wings – 8/10

When I heard that Daesung was going to have a solo on the album, I was expecting a really emotional ballad about all of the problems he faced last year. But I was pleasantly surprised when I heard it because it’s actually a very happy song! It has a great melody and is very radio friendly. The use of guitar brings in a pop/rock feel, which kind of reminds me of some of Kelly Clarkson’s instrumentals (which of course is a great thing). Daesung has a great voice and I’m really glad he got to showcase that with this album. The song is a great way to end the album.