Beenzino’s third album ’12’ is here! In the last year Beenzino has been busy with shows and various projects and although he pre-released a few tracks, this album has been a long time coming. Here is my review of ’12’!
Track 1 – Time Travel
I know it’s just the first track but this is probably one of the best songs on the album. If the rest of the tracks are this good then Beenzino has kept us all waiting for very good reason. One of my favorite things about Beenzino’s songs is his blend of jazz and hip hop and one of Beenzino’s best qualities as a rapper is his recognizable and yet versatile style.
Track 2 – 토요일의 끝에서 (feat. Blacknut)
Who knew that a track featuring Blacknut would be one that you’d want to blast at a party? I almost didn’t recognize the controversial rapper’s voice. I guess Beenzino is capable of bringing out the best in anyone. This is a really fun song that I am already planning to add to my summer playlist.
3 – I Don’t Mind
We got a taste of what can happen when Beenzino dabbles in rock & roll with ‘Break’ (included on this album as well). Well now we have ‘I Don’t Mind’ to add to the list of great rock/rap fusion songs. I love everything about this one- the drums, the guitar and the really catchy hook.
4 – Flexin
This album just gets better and better. I love the groove of this song and the best way to describe Beenzino’s rapping on this track is skillful. Remember Beenzino’s verse on the Illionaire track ‘연결고리 (YGGR)’? The beat is very simplistic and it doesn’t change throughout the song. It can get monotonous because everyone raps with a similar rhythm. Then you get to Beenzino’s verse and he has a totally different approach that in my opinion made him stand out. This track is one of the best examples of the way Beenzino can switch up his pace and flow on the same song with ease.
Track 5 – January (feat. YDG)
Not bad but not great either. This one is my least favorite so far. Having actor-rapper Yang Dong-Eun feature was an interesting choice.
Track 6 – Being Myself
“I’m unique, so unique, I’m so busy I’m being myself” ~ This track is a declaration of Beenzino’s individuality and I dig it. This track incorporates a great use of sampling and a groovy beat (there are elements that make me wonder how much influence Kendrick Lamar’s music has had on Beenzino). I like to be hooked at the beginning of a track but I have to say the second half of the song is the best part for me (starting around the 2:25 mark).
Track 7- Break
Released last October, Break is one of my favorite Beenzino songs.
Track 8 – Imagine Time (feat. 수란)
What a pleasant surprise this track is. I like the way the song starts with Beenzino rapping over slow muted piano music mixed in with what sounds like the background noise of a park in the city. The song changes when the beat comes in and then the piano comes back in later. Beenzino featured on singer-songwriter Suran’s song “Calling In Love” back in November and both artists featured together on one of my favorite Primary creations “Mannequin” (from his ‘2-2’ album). Suran’s vocals add a great element to the song and her voice helps to round out the track at the end.
Track 9 – 젖고있어
The instrumentals on this song are fantastic. This track has the vibe of a Hyukoh song and Beenzino’s sound is more sentimental to match. I think this is my favorite song on the album.
Track 10 – Dali, Van, Picasso
Another pre-released song, one that I had the pleasure of enjoying live when I saw Beenzino in NY back in December (check out my concert recap here).
Track 11 – We Are Going To
Like good books, sometimes the best songs are able to transport the listener elsewhere. This song was pre-released back at the end of November and it is structured in such a way to make you feel like you’re traveling. I think this track was the best way to end the album.
What did you think of ’12’? Leave me a comment and let me know! Make sure to like the SeoulRebels Facebook page to stay up to date on all the latest recaps and reviews! Many thanks to HiphopKR’s Youtube Channel for the uploads of Beenzino’s new songs. You can subscribe to their channel here.
UPDATE: You can find the lyrics to the songs on the album here courtesy of Pop!Gasa.