DAL★SHABET: 있기 없기 [HAVE, NOT HAVE]

By Paris365 on November 22, 2012

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Release Date

11/15/12

Genre

K-Pop

Label

CJ E&M

Have, Not Have is the immensely popular K-pop girl group Dal★Shabet's fifth mini-album, following the release of their first full-length album, the exquisite BANG BANG, earlier this year.

The mini-album opens with a lovely R&B-flavored mid-tempo ballad called "샤르르 (for Darling)," which was written for the girls to dedicate to their fan club. It's been said that the girls wanted to go retro on this release and this track does sound a bit more like mid-90s R&B than today's R&B. That said, it still feels like a fresh, new song and a sweet and tender one at that. Also, the girls' voices have never sound as beautiful as they do harmonizing here. "Baby, won't you be my love forever?" they sing and I'm sure their many fans will want to say yes.

The second track here is the title track, "있기 없기 (Have, Not Have)," which is a dazzling dance number. It meshes punchy, modern beats and radiant bursts of disco synth along with some lighter 90's drum machine beats. As a result, it manages to sound 70's, 90's and 2012 all at the same time. Here's the English translation of part of the chorus: "Are you gonna do this or not? Are you really gonna do this or not?" Clearly, the girls don't like indecisive boys. The catchy hip-hop verse ends, in English: "To be or not to be, boy?" I guess you could say that this song is the girls' take on the old saying "he loves me, he loves me not."

Track three, "유리인형 (DON'T TOUCH)," doesn't sound the least bit retro. This one is a pure 2012 banger complete with a loud, propulsive beat, an infectious clapper and some truly funky synthesized bass as well as some slightly dark, glimmering synth flourishes as well. "Boy don't touch, I'm very frazzled, baby," the girls sing over and over again during the infectious chorus, though most of the song is in Korean.

"Falling In Love" is the fourth new song on hand. This one is a downtempo pop ballad with a subtle beat, some R&B-tinged bass, and lots of bright, sunshiny synth. Clearly, it's meant to be a very happy ballad and that's obvious from the girls' sugary sweet vocals and the overall tone of the song. It definitely has a retro vibe, too, though I'm not quite sure what era it is that they've been inspired by. If I had to guess, I would say early 90's but it could just as easily be the 80's or even the 70's. Regardless, it's retro-tastic and quite the lovely song.

Next up is the "Electro Swing Remix" of "있기 없기 (Have, Not Have)." To my ears, it's not hugely different than the original version, but that's not a bad thing. It's actually refreshing to hear a remix that doesn't sound like it has massacred the original song. What is different here is that the beats sound louder and a bit more modern, meanwhile they've added some groovy horns. While I certainly appreciate the retro vibes of the original, I actually found myself liking this irresistible remix even more.

The mini-album concludes with an instrumental version of "있기 없기 (Have, Not Have)." -Michael McCarthy

Labels and artists interested in being featured here may contact Michael McCarthy at cinema365@gmail.com. Follow Michael on Twitter https://twitter.com/paris365.

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