By the time an artist is sort of a decade-and-a-half into their profession, you would possibly assume you’d be capable to predict precisely what their subsequent strikes is perhaps. Whereas that is perhaps true of some musicians effectively into their careers, that’s not an announcement that may be utilized to Taeyeon, certainly one of Ok-pop’s most persistently versatile and ever-evolving stars.
This summer season, the Girls’ Generation chief will rejoice 15 years since she made her debut with the group however – because the rollout for her new solo album ‘INVU’ has confirmed – she’s removed from settling into one groove. Resting on her laurels and trotting out protected songs that hold her safe in her place as a beloved star however don’t problem our notion of her are usually not strikes you’ll discover her making any time quickly.
Through the years, Taeyeon has turn into best-known for her gorgeous vocals, possessing a voice that may fly by her vary as effortlessly as an acrobat nailing a gravity-defying transfer. However her 2021 single ‘Weekend’ – which may also function on ‘INVU’ – discovered her utilising her voice in a method not generally related together with her. Its pastel-hued refrain is colored with virtually hushed falsetto chirps, her vocals refined and low-key slightly than the highly effective and soulful sound she’s usually praised for. This modification, although, isn’t any dangerous factor – as a substitute it provides one other string to the singer’s bow and presents yet one more method wherein she manages to attract the listener in.
A key side of Taeyeon’s vocals and, subsequently, her artistry is her capacity to painting the richest of feelings in only a few notes. Korean composer Yoo Younger-seok as soon as likened her singing to that of “a girl who has been divorced seven occasions”, and it’s exhausting to disagree with that evaluation. However simply because the ache of heartbreak doesn’t diminish regardless of what number of occasions you undergo it, neither does Taeyeon’s voice ever waver in its capacity to devastate. Even when she’s switching issues up, as on her previous single ‘Can’t Control Myself’, one line nonetheless has the ability to make us crumble emotionally.
Like ‘Weekend’ earlier than it, ‘Can’t Management Myself’ additionally gave us but extra new angles to think about the “sound supply queen” from. Emotive and uncooked, it dips into the pop-punk that’s on-trend across the globe proper now, however places a contemporary twist on it, setting Taeyeon other than the gang. As a substitute of ripping by one thing extra in-your-face and loud, she moulds the heart-wrenching feeling and clear guitar hooks of the style right into a stirring ballad. It’s a sensible transfer – deciding on the weather of the zeitgeist sound that work together with her emotional storytelling and utilizing them to create one thing totally refreshing.
After all, “King” Taeyeon – as followers usually consult with her – has at all times had a penchant for experimenting together with her sonic fashion, gliding by genres like a magpie on the hunt for shiny new treasure. After constructing her identify as a solo act by OSTs for dramas – usually poignant and highly effective – she ventured into pop-rock on her solo debut single correct, ‘I’. ‘Fantastic’, from her 2017 album ‘My Voice’, noticed her merge folky acoustic guitars with gleaming power-pop, whereas ‘Why’ – launched a 12 months prior on the mini-album of the identical identify – mixed gently juddering EDM beats, R&B glimmers and balmy tropical pop. Taeyeon has at all times made it very clear – stagnating in a single place just isn’t for her.
The newly launched ‘INVU’ little doubt reinforces that notion as soon as once more and provides us yet one more assorted and multifaceted file to dive into. We’d not be capable to pin down the place Taeyeon will take us subsequent however we wouldn’t have it some other method. The aspect of the unknown helps hold her journey thrilling, even this deep into her profession, however there’s one factor we are able to predict with absolute certainty – no matter flip she makes subsequent, it’ll at all times undoubtedly be nice.