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TAEYEON Drops 5th Mini Album “To. X”

Who is TAEYEON?

TAEYEON has made her long-awaited comeback to K-pop on November 27th with To. X – The 5th Mini Album. She is known for her crucial role in the 2007 girl group Girl’s Generation. She was the group’s leader, as well as a powerhouse vocalist. The girls took the world by storm, breaking many boundaries, not just in Korea, but internationally as well.

Performing at Madison Square Garden and debuting on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart proves how monumental the group was at the time. Since then, TAEYEON has gone solo and stayed with her company, SM Entertainment, to further her career. On the Billboard Global Excl. Chart, two of her solo songs debuted, showcasing that her legacy will never fade.

Courtesy of SM Entertainment

Review of the Title Track “To. X”

A guitar-forward beat compliments TAEYEON’s high and soft sultry vocals. “To. X” is about moving on from a toxic relationship and reminiscing about the good times the couple had before it ended sourly. It was a cute title track, but it fell short of previous comebacks. Her vocals were great, but the song felt mediocre and forgettable. TAEYEON has such a strong discography, such as “INVU” and “Weekend,” where she displayed stronger melodies.

“To. X” lacks the TAEYEON flair that everyone around the world loves. This should have been a B-side or left in the drafts. The music video for this track has a darker vibe and further shows TAEYEON reminiscing about the love that doesn’t exist anymore. She replays moments between them and looks for a light in the dark. This ex of hers seems very self-absorbed and full of themselves. In one captivating moment, she lights the house on fire where those memories lay.

Overall Review of To. X – The Fifth Mini Album

TAEYEON’s strong voice on these songs is what saved the project. There were only two good songs on the whole album and it makes one ponder if her label held her back. She is such a strong singer, and it’s strange her label gave her subpar music to work with after sticking to SM Entertainment for 16 years. The title track and the mini album are very dull. Doing a darker concept and sticking to that sad sound is fine, but you have to execute it in a way that keeps your audience engaged.

Courtesy of SM Entertainment

The Two Standout Tracks

“All For Nothing” is one of the two standout tracks; it serves as a ballad. The layered vocals are gorgeous and you feel the hurt in her voice. The songs on this album use a lot of guitar-forward production, and “All For Nothing” sticks to that formula. TAEYEON’s impressive range against the strong beat is like butter working harmoniously. It is about unrequited love and the pain involved. This feeling is expressed as an illusion and wanting their attention back. The story of “All For Nothing” is relatable and executed perfectly. “All For Nothing” should have been the title track, as the underlying message gives an overview of the project.

“Fabulous” is the only English song on the album and it is definitely one of her strongest b-sides that TAEYEON has ever released. Violins and a bass beat against TAEYEON’s elegant melody. Her confidence is exuded through this song, and it feels like she is reclaiming her power from the previous tracks where she felt lonely. “I’m your sunshine, I’m your star. Babe, without me won’t get far. So divine, I’m off the charts. Masterpiece, a work of art.” The lyrics here show the song is about how the ex-lover will never find someone as amazing and classy as TAEYEON. This is the perfect ending to the project where she recognizes her strength and it being his loss. She will become stronger with her independence.

Next time TAEYEON comes back, SM Entertainment needs to do better overall. Two tracks out of six being great and a lackluster title track is weak. She deserves the best production considering this company wouldn’t be as successful without Girl’s Generation and TAEYEON. Her previous title tracks were outstanding and that is what she deserves. If you want to check out more K-pop reviews, check out the review for Stray Kids’ latest album.

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