Julyssa’s Music Highlights of 2011

6. Milow – North And South

I wrote how this album took my soul away. I love it when by sheer chance you find something to love. To me, this is among one of the better European releases of the year. It’s cute, it’s easy to sing along to, it doesn’t get boring — because often with singer/songwriters, it can all start to sound the same. But with Milow it’s just right, charming with a huge glint in the eye.

I think that what I most appreciate about Milow as an artist is how hard he works. He just finished a huge European tour, where he had gigs almost every single night. His passion for his craft and his hard work comes through in his music and that makes me appreciate it so much more.

Listen to the album on Xiami. Get the album as a CD or on iTunes.

5. 2NE1 – Mini Album Vol. 2

And here is one mainstream Kpop mini-album that was just right. For the most part, I am not that fond of 2NE1. Sometimes everything is a little too much, like they try so hard to be different. But that is mostly their style — when it comes to their music, I do not have much to complain about besides Dara’s inability to sing.

Sometimes all of their songs pretty much sound the same, but I still jam out to them. Somehow 2NE1 always makes me fist-pump. Seeing as I am about to embark on a new path of my life, I need all the fist-pumping music I can get my hands on.

Listen to the album on Xiami. Get the album on YesAsia.

4. JYJ – IN HEAVEN/Tohoshinki – TONE

Oh no she didn’t!

Oh yes I did.

To be quite honest, I did have my issues with TONE — so many that the draft for my review has been saved for months in my computer. But as I’ve been listening to it slowly, god dammit if it isn’t a lovely album. I think many of the reasons as to why I was so opposed to it was because it was just Changmin and Yunho singing. As much as I adore them, they are not my favourite singers, per se. But that is really water under the bridge because when it comes to just production, TONE was lovely from beginning to end. Sure, it was a very different sound to previous Tohoshinki albums, but it was crisp and fresh.

When it comes to IN HEAVEN — this was the album that made me go, “Hallelujah”. Not so much because it was a perfect album all around, I was just thankful that JYJ released music in Korean. Not that their English album The Beginning was that horrible (*cough*ayygirlshoulddieinapitoffire*cough*), but yeah, I prefer them in Korean. I also prefer them writing their own songs. In Heaven was one hell of a ballad that managed to get my Cassiopean heart beating fiercely again. Damn you, Kim Jaejoong.

Also, this whole thing about JYJ and Tohoshinki releasing their albums with one day in between them — too much of a coincidence if you ask me. I love both of the albums very much. It gives me hope for the future. I like that these bandmates have found their sounds. It works really well. I do prefer TONE a little more but should I just pick one? No way in hell.

Listen to the JYJ album on Xiami  and buy it on YesAsia. — Listen to the Tohoshinki album on Xiami and buy it on YesAsia.


Music is all I do: I work in music, I write about music, I listen to music.

12 Responses

  1. Mirella says:

    Damn, the only song I can recognize is the 2NE1 one, and that’s only because I have a friend who is a fan of the group (and keeps dancing this particular song all the freaking time).

  2. Dani says:

    I am confused. You put Republic of 2PM on the list, say it’s good and sexy and all that….but then you say that “their first Japanese album didn’t cut it for this list”……what? Republic of 2PM IS their first Japanese album and it looks like it’s on the list so this is really confusing. Are you sure that you didn’t just want to mention I’m Your Man, their second single?

    • Julyssa says:

      @Dani, It’s not on the list. The list contains 10 entries. I added 2PM as an honorable mention. Cus as much as I love the album, well to me it wasn’t good enough to make my list.

      I am just being biased and using it as an excuse to again share that overly sexy 2PM mv….

  3. E says:

    Can’t believe I missed Nicolas solo! She was my fav member too (mostly based on looks actually).

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