“Stay As You Are” is the first solo mini-album released by B1A4’s Sandeul. It contains five songs altogether, including the title and music video track “Stay As You Are”. Overall, I was pretty pleased with how Sandeul’s debut album turned out, and I highly recommend that you also listen to it!
Stay As You Are: This is the title and music video track for a reason. It was a very winter feeling to it, and it would be the perfect track for a winter drama. Sandeul’s sweet and charming voice sets the perfect mood for the rest of the album. With a voice like his, you would never guess that Sandeul was an idol group member, he sounds like a highly skilled ballad singer here! I love everything from the piano backing track to Sandeul’s deep voice and the emotions he conveys in the song.
Home: “Home” is another slow ballad. This was probably my least favourite track on the album. It was a bit difficult to listen to, especially at the beginning, because I wasn’t sure of where Sandeul was going in his musical direction. The song DID improve however, and Sandeul demonstrated his vocal range gracefully. I loved his softer vocals here and I felt they tied in perfectly with the piano and orchestral accompaniment.
My Childhood Story: The third track on the album feels like a homage to older, more popular, Korean ballad groups and singers. From the track’s introduction alone, I immediately thought of the likes of Monday Kiz and SG Wannabe. That being said, that is just the backtrack at play, Sandeul once again demonstrates his use of soft vocals and sings wonderfully in a another light song. This one, again, brought a winter feeling to it, and I can see it being a Christmas song.
Ya!: “Ya!” is a track featuring the Mamamoo member, Wheein. This is one of the more upbeat tracks on the album, and I meant “upbeat” lightly. It has a slightly more r&b feeling to this time around with the use of chimes and percussion. It was an r&b backbeat that reminds me of early 2000s r&b. Here Sandeul uses more “pop” sounding vocals that suit his role as a Kpop idol. My favourite part about the song is the chorus, where Wheein pops in to give show off her vocal prowess. The duo’s harmonisation is flawless and I love the repetitive melody in the chorus. I really liked Wheein’s part in this song, it fit perfectly! This was definitely my favourite track on the album.
The Way With You: The final track on Sandeul’s mini-album “Stay As You Are” is “The Way With You”. This certainly does sound like an album closer, from start to finish. The song borrows elements from ballads, pop, and r&b – creating a great fusion of sound. Once again, we get to hear Sandeul’s vocal range from deep tones to higher tones. His voice has really matured since his B1A4 debut days! I love the harmonies in this track and Sandeul’s diction. Each word he sings is carefully pronounced and I can hear him clearly.
Overall, this is a great solo debut for Sandeul, and a perfect autumn/winter album. I highly recommend it to fans of ballads and slower music!
Review written by Isabelle