Believe

Total Score: 4.80

believe

MV: n/a
Sound Quality: 4
Singing Quality: 4
Contextual Fit: 4

Lyrics Only | Live (from SS1, I think)

Release Date: 12/05/2005

I believe (ha) this song goes lower, if only for a second, than any of the other songs on the Twins album; it reaches a B2 and (even to present day) a lot of the members have trouble supporting a note that low. The song also has several A4s in the chorus, all of which are flipped up to falsetto (with varying levels of quality), so probably this was the best key signature for the song, even if it ended up weird on both ends of the vocal range. (Or, you know, just rewrite the vocal lines so it’s more singable…)

I took some vocal notes while listening to this, but before I get into that, I would just like to point out that this is the last track from the Twins album, and yes, Shindong did not have a single feature on the entire thing. I looked ahead a little bit and I think he has one six months from this song chronologically, which is six songs after this one, but the site I saw that on has really bad color coding (i.e. yellow on white and six variations of blue/green) so I am not 100% positive. But whenever it does show up, I will slap that “Shindong” tag on that song with pride. You go, Shindong Coco.

It may just be because I was looking into it a little bit yesterday so the topic is fresh in my mind, but I think this may be the first SJ song that pairs Ryeowook and Sungmin up. The first I actively noticed, anyway. And it was a good match, at least for the first few years of SJ; Ryeowook’s vibrato is really shaky, almost jerky in this song, and Sungmin’s to this day is smoother but still has a quality to it that’s like flipping on a switch: “this is me with vibrato, and this is me with no vibrato.” Their comfortable vocal ranges were about the same and both had a lighter quality to their voices.

So, here are my nitpicky notes, and they’re not all criticisms I swear:

  • Heechul and Eunhyuk can barely hit that B2 at all (the C3 sounds much more solid) and Leeteuk manages it but just for a moment.
  • When Donghae comes in before the 1st chorus, he sounds really good, until the line takes him to a D3 and Eb3, at which point he loses vocal support.
  • Nobody has exceptionally good falsetto in this song; Kangin’s is super breathy (it was better on other songs so this may be related to it being a single note as opposed to a phrase) and Ryeowook’s is, I don’t even know what note that is, somewhere between an A4 and B4? (His G4 is clearer)
  • Kangin, however, does do a very nice job on the lead in to the 2nd chorus, including the D3 and Eb3 that Donghae whiffed on.
  • Leeteuk somehow has this ability to sound flat even when he’s not. I mean, sometimes he really is flat, but I think the rest of the time it may have to do with the nasal quality of his voice making my ears anticipate the flatness.
  • And that is why Leeteuk and Yesung should not sing back to back like they do in the 2nd chorus here, because Yesung is so much better and it makes Leeteuk sound worse by comparison. (Out of curiosity, since Leeteuk got to be on “You Are The One” earlier, I wonder who SM thought the weakest singer in SJ was at the time. Hangeng? Kibum?)

Overall, the Twins album has a lot of energy and hope and determination, and a lot of nervous, unconfident vocals (Ryeowook and Yesung are probably the most confident-sounding of the group, when it comes to singing, anyway). I peeked ahead to try to find a point when the unconfident part goes away, and of the songs I already am familiar with, my best guess is “Marry U” which is a full 18 months away from this song.

But, coming up tomorrow, TVXQ joins the fray for a song that, at least going by the album art, will be WAY TOO DAMN CROWDED!

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2 thoughts on “Believe

  1. Pingback: U | An SJ A Day

  2. Pingback: Super Show 1: Part 5 of 5 | An SJ A Day

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