March 12, 2012
This album made us sad. The overall packaging was poor and lackluster design-wise.
The photobooks were awful; this is one of the only groups that is LOADED with eye candy, and this pictorial spread made them look like the other plain boy bands out there. B1A4 is probably the most overall attractive younger group, being void of a repulsive person, but the main photoshoot was yucky. It made us even more sad. The behind the scenes secondary photobook had better material, but still failed to capture these boys at their best.
01. “Baby I’m Sorry”
02. “This Time Is Over”
03. “So Fine”
04. “Super Sonic”
05. “둘만 있으면 (Just the Two of Us)” (Baro Solo ft. Miss A’s Min)
06. “웃어봐 (Smile)”
08. “짝사랑 (Crush)”(Sandeul Solo)
09. “You Are My Girl”
10. “Wonderful Tonight” (Unplugged Remix)
11. “Baby I’m Sorry” (Instrumental)
B1A4 has completely turned their whole concept around from their debut. They had established a concept of that adorable boy next door. Between Let’s Fly and It B1A4, there was not a serious grown up song to be seen. But this full album really surprised us. While maintaining that lovable youthfulness that we really appreciated from their first two min albums, they added a professionalism and grew up just a little.
What really separates B1A4 from other rookie and new groups is the fact that they not only have a fairly talented rapper but an amazing vocalist. Without either their songs would fall quite flat like many other groups. Baro’s deep voice and overall flow ties the different parts of each song together, and Sandeul’s unbelievable vocals really finish each song with intensity and power. Very few people have the shear power and volume that Sandeul has, and we are really impressed with B1A4 for showcasing his talents, and putting him front and center in this album.
We absolutely adore the way this album flows, and not one song feels unneeded or out of place. Though this was on the short side coming up just short of 40 minutes (including an instrumental piece), we didn’t mind. The flow is really great and this album is best played in the order arranged.
I adore B1A4 because of Sandeul’s stunning vocal ability. In the groups previous mini albums, his voice is noticeable good but not exactly showcased enough to draw a solid conclusion. But songs like “Time Is Over” and his solo “Crush” really feature his immense talent. Though he is fairly new to the K-Pop scene Sandeul is one of the best males at vocal belting. His power and talent are very impressive and even live he is able to turn it out (a feat many do not even attempt). I give mad props to B1A4 as a group, because in this album it was not a matter of even distribution of lines among the five members but a fair distribution of lines and time based on talent. Now this may anger the fans who favor members like CNU and Gongchan, but the biggest shame in K-Pop is the squandering and waste of those who are phenomenal singers. By giving an equal distribution of lines among everyone in the group is the antithesis of fairness, by disregarding those who have talent to just give people equal time is truly unfair to those who have more talent than that of the average idol.
What really shocked me about Ignition is how good Baro is a rapper. In B1A4 of past times, his rapping was quirky but not really serious. Again with songs of the likes of “Time Is Over” and “Baby I’m Sorry”, being exponentially more grown up than “Beautiful Target” and “Let’s Fly”, Baro’s real talent is shown. While he is no TOP or G-Dragon, he is undoubtedly impressive. His voice standing out the most amongst the group, gives a smooth and even sexier vibe to their songs. His solo “Just The Two of Us” has really grown on me over the last week or so. While most cross-sex duets fall quite flat, mainly from the reason the males voice is not much different in range or aesthetic from their female counterparts. Baro’s for the most part raps and Min sings most of the chorus’ the song was well planned and excellently arranged. I think that this type of R&B song is much more suited to Baro’s style of rapping than a strait-up rap as we see from YG artists. As “Just the Two of Us” many of Ignitions songs do start sound better after a bit of time.
In addition to Baro’s solo, I am quite inclined to like Sandeul’s solo “Crush”. Ballads are just a personal weakness of mine. While The clarity and sweetness of crush is just heart melting. While it is emotional, it does not work up the listener, the song remains calm and delicate in its entirety. Singers like Sandeul are just so refreshing. Without relying on changing pitch every second or showing off with ear piercing falsettos, Sandeul just powers through this soft little ballad as he does with every B1A4 song.
Ignition is a good stepping stone for B1A4, it maintains that playful boyishness that they are well known for, but it is a good transition into them becoming men.
I thoroughly enjoy Ignition and must admit I am quite obsessed with more than a few of the songs that it contains. I mostly can’t even listen to a group if their is not not a dedicated vocalist that is spectacular, because all of the members are at the minimum above average as singers, B1A4 is a group that can be enjoyed watching in videos and performances but just listening to as well. They most certainly are a promising group.
P’s Least Favorites:
There is really no song that is horrible on Ignition. Some are not as dazzling as others, but this is to be expected from any group. Because of careful direction and production this album is an overall success musically.
“Baby I’m Sorry” is a really cute pop song. Its uplifting, the singing is light and the rap is refreshing. I’m not much of a fan of Baro, but I didn’t mind his rapping much in this song. It was a more mature side of B1A4, but still retained their famed carefree and happy attitude. Despite the maturer vibe, the song maintains its catchiness (something I notice is lost in a lot of “mature” songs) for the chorus and playful attitude. Similarly, I also enjoyed “So Fine” for the sole reason that it seems more mature, but still cute, and especially catchy. In my opinion, this, as well as “You are my Girl”, was the catchiest song on the album, and it was done without being downright annoying.
And then we have “Smile” which is so sweet and adorable. The singing is wonderful, and the song is exactly what you’d imagine a lovestruck guy singing about some girl he likes. The emotions were conveyed appropriately without being overbearing, the chorus is lovely and not in any way boring, and though the song is on the slower side, it still has a bit of “umph” and retains my attention, so job well done.
B’s Least Favorites:
Just as The Peach said, there was no bad song on this album. Some weren’t as attention grabbing as others, but all were of fit quality and there was no awful piece.
Overall Rating: 8.4