[08] Album Analysis: 2PM – Hands Up

2PM with Hands Up

01 Hands up
02 Electricity
03 Give It To Me
04 영화처럼 (Like a Movie)
05 모르니
06 Hot
07 Without U
08 I’ll be back
09 I can’t
10 Hands Up (East4A Mix)
11 Electricity (220v Remix)
12 Thank You
13 Don`t Stop Can`t Stop

The beastly K-POP half of 2OneDay has returned with a second album entitled Hands Up.  Junho, Taecyeon, Nichkhun, Chansung, Wooyoung and Junho are back – same old 2PM, all new style.

One thing will always seem to remain with 2PM, and that is their very unique way of harmonizing — without actually having to blend their voices with each other. It may seem ironic, but the distinction of voices in every 2PM song has given them their signature in the music industry. To further illustrate, notice how Junsu and Junho’s voice rise above the rest, pulling of high notes early into the song. Peppered with adlibs and raps all throughout, 2PM has created their own version of the K-Pop flavor.

This second full album gives you that same 2PM flavor tweaked a notch (or two) up. The title track bearing the same name as the album, Hands Up, embodies a Friday night out at the club feel, with its bar party feel. The heavy beats and elating synths make it hard not to dance to — throw in 2PM’s raw voices and you have an absolutely energizing song to make you feel like you’re clubbing with the boys themselves. At the 2:02 mark, you’ll hear Wondergirls’ Sohee saying “Oppa, Can I trust you?” and Taec responding charismatically. The rap this time is immensely different with regards to the previous rap parts. Why? Because Taecyeon has significantly grown and developed better rap skills. Alongside him raps Nichkhun, playful with the words he delivers, coating the song with fun. Chansung and Junho do a good job with the chorus, and it really does want to make you put your hands up. Inevitably, Junsu delivers well, and his oh-so-distinct voice always seems into any genre. His crooning, balladic voice is just as well-suited for upbeat songs such as this. This might be my own fault, but Wooyoung wasn’t a stand out that much audibly, but in the Music Video he absolutely catches your attention with the bright red regal outit. His camera-friendly personality enabled him to be spotted easily, not just by his blonde hair and red suit, but because of his radiating presence.

Now Electricity, this track has so much power and charisma to it, it leaves you shocked. (No pun intended.) It’s a mischievous song, with the chorus going Let me touch you, and give you electricity. A kind of subtle delivery, wrapped in a playful hip-hop beat. There isn’t really much to say, because listening to it gives you a better understanding – and this applies for this song especially. I’ve pinned this song down as my personal favorite track in the album, and really, it’s quite the addictive song. Just a fun fact if you don’t know, Electricity was featured in the drama Dream High. Here’s a clip:

Which version do you like better? Jason’s solo version, or the full 2PM version?

Another track that’s got sick beats is Hot. With electronic influences, the song stays true to the club-style feel of the album. It’s another upbeat track that showcases 2PM’s power vocals in the chorus, making it just a bit more interesting. When you get to the peak of the song, it gets even better. If Junsu’s high notes won’t give you goosebumps, I don’t know what will. It’s very techno, without taking away the 2PM flavor. I don’t know why, but the song left me hanging. If this song was played in a club, you might get so caught up in it, that you’d forget the world. Call it cliche, but the track is that good.

To give you a break from the heart-racing upbeat tracks, 2PM has a track called Give it to Me that is relatively laid-back. It’s a chill, club song. It’s a song, that I myself, imagine listening to on a rainy day, in the confines of my room. The song also makes for a driving-through-the-city-at-night song, pop it into your dashboard stereo and let the song drown the low hum of your vehicle as the wheels bite the asphalt road. (How’s that for visual impact?) It verges on being an RnB and dance track, and it makes for a good listen. Taecyeon was spot on, with his deep, velvet voice; crooners Wooyoung, Junho and Junsu leading the way, their voices very comfortable to the ears.

Moreuni or Don’t you Know is a sweet track off of the album. It’s about a love sick guy who expresses his frustrations at the girl he likes, who does not seem to notice his infatuation over her. Here’s an excerpt of the chorus:

You still don’t know that once I look at you, my heart goes thump thump
Come one step closer to me, no matter what you want I’ll give it to you
Baby know my heart, lady tell me if you know
I’ll make you happy every day, so come on now, give me an answer

The song will absolutely make you smile, if not make you dance out in the open. It’s a happy upbeat track that will keep you listening, and understanding what the song means will give you much more of a reason to smile, as you could imagine yourself being the receiver of 2PM’s love sick cries.

Like A Movie, the only slow song in the album, features a soldier-march snare beat in the background, and 2PM’s emotional voices. It’s reminiscent of a Westlife song (If you’re familiar with the popular Irish boy band in the 90s) and it would do you much good to take time to grasp the English translation. Similar to BEAST’s Fiction, it’s about a guy who cannot forget the memories with his lover, and he is reminiscing their time together, relating it to a movie.

The rest of the tracks are 2PM’s previous releases, Without U, Thank You, I Can’t, Don’t Stop Can’t Stop and I’ll be Back are but bonuses to the album, along with two remixes. One for Electricity and one for Hands Up. The Hands Up remix isn’t considerably great, but the 22OV Remix of Electricity tickles your eardrums; although in the end, it is always your preference that matters.

Hands Up, 2PM’s Second Album is worth your while, and even worth your money. This Friday night party themed album is a fresh reprieve from 2PM’s usual strong and dark concepts of hurt and heartbreak. I cannot emphasize enough how Taecyeon has significantly improved — it’s not just spitting out words now, I do sense he has learned that rap is not just a “side dish” to a song, it’s just as stand alone as singing. It was also very nice to hear Wooyoung, especially for the track Like a Movie, he brought out the emotion. It’s nice to see the boys living it out in a high-end bar, endlessly drinking and partying, having the time of their lives. Don’t forget to check out the Music Video AND don’t forget, to purchase the album to support the artist! 2PM is still the hottest time of the day, and they always will.

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