A-Mei – R U Watching?

Release Date: April 29th, 2011
Label: Gold Typhoon (TW)

Tracklist:

  1. 都什麼時候了 (What Time is it Already) [MV]
  2. 一個人對話 (Monologue)
  3. 還有眼淚就好 (It’s Alright Because There’s Still Tears) [MV]
  4. 他們 (Them) [MV]
  5. 我最親愛的 (My Most Beloved) [MV]
  6. 你在看我嗎? (R U Watching?) [MV]
  7. 潛規則 (Treading Across Boundaries) [MV]
  8. 來鬧的 (Here to Play)
  9. 渴了(Thirsty) [MV]
  10. High咖 (So High) [MV]

With her 15th studio album, A-Mei chooses to slow things down and get a little more serious. R U Watching? is a direct about face from her previous album Amit that featured heavy rock sounds and lots of upbeat tracks.

To be honest, this review was put off for so long because I didn’t know what to write. A-Mei is one of my favorite artists of all, but R U Watching? left me feeling flat. There was nothing that stood out to me. Amit was such an amazing and creative album, and a hard one to follow up, apparently even A-Mei wasn’t up for that challenge.

The album was filled with ballads and sprinkled with fast songs like so many other cookie cutter Chinese albums. Each song on its own is good, but the album altogether was a bit of a let down. She lost her creative edge and didn’t add flavor or mix styles in her usual way. As an A-Mei fan, I was surprised at my own disappointment in the album.

The songs are good. But, the first five songs are straight ballads. I think A-Mei is a great balladeer, but it’s nice when they’re broken up. R U Watching? starts with the highly emotional What Time Is It Already (都什麼時候了). I love when ballads have so much emotion that they break language barriers, and A-Mei is one of the best artists out there to do that. The next two songs kind of blend in with the first for me, to be honest. I’m glad there was a video released for My Most Beloved (我最親愛的) though, because this traditionally styled ballad was my favorite of the album.

The album doesn’t pick up until we get to R U Watching? (你在看我嗎?), which has a great composition, I love the intro. It starts off with an orchestra instrumental, then breaks down into a dance beat. It’s this kind of creativity I expect from A-Mei, and I was glad she, at least, added it into a couple of songs. The following three tracks are fun dance-tempo songs. The album finishes out with  So High (High咖), a disco-tastic funk song similar to Summer Waves (夏天的浪花) off her Star album.

In all, I was not the happiest with the album overall, but I liked bits and pieces from it. I think I’ll be sticking to Star and Amit when I want my A-Mei fix, though.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Preview it on Xiami.com | Like it? Buy it on YesAsia

Jenna

Part-time student, full-time media whore, fan of all things Asian.

3 Responses

  1. amy says:

    I was a little meh, as well. Though, I must admit Amit left me “hmm, this is pretty good” the first time I listened to it. The more you play it, though, it sounds really awesome and sticks with you.

    The problem is that… this one isn’t really a follow up to AMIT, which is something that just clicked after her Talk Asia interview (did you see that?). A-Mei explains there that Amit is another identity, her other “me” and a complete different brand. She says that while Amit is daring and edgy, pushing the boundaries. A-Mei is what people expect of her (or something along those lines), the pop rock-ish ballads.

    I think that makes sense, and if you take that into account with this album and not counting AMIT, I think it’s different.

    • Jenna says:

      @amy, I can see how this album makes more sense now. As I said (probably too bluntly) that it was very cookie-cutter. A lot of Chinese albums tend to be a few up-beat songs and a whole ton of ballads, and that’s what the main stream Chinese market demands and expects, so if that’s what she gave out, I understand more. But even with Star and I Want Happiness there was more flavor to the songs than there was on this album. But, I’m glad I’m not the only “meh” in the crowd.

      • amy says:

        @Jenna, two years into this post. Fully immersed into the cmusic scene, I can tell you now- I really love relistening to some of the ballads in this album. It’s Alright Because There’s Still Tears, My Most Beloved and What Time is it Already xD particularly. I’ve been relistening the tracks with MVs because I’ve been updating the posts.

Leave a Reply