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Music Releases, Original Features

[Album Review] G-Dragon - 'Kwon Ji Yong'

By Patrick_Magee   Saturday, June 10, 2017   57,083   12,780   0



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(For those that don't know, Yong means Dragon in Korean, so you get his English stage name from his Korean name - Ji (G) Yong (Dragon)).

After promoting with Big Bang consistently for almost two and a half years, G-Dragon has returned to the stage as a solo artist with the release of his self-titled 'Kwon Ji Yong' album. His return comes at a complicated time for YG Entertainment, as fellow bandmate T.O.P is in the spotlight for his medical overdose and marijuana scandal, but G-Dragon manages to stand confidently and assert himself as an event to behold. With 'Kwon Ji Yong,' G-Dragon showcases a dramatic evolution and maturation of sound that fans are sure to fall in love with. The physical album comes in a USB thumb drive instead of the traditional CD.

Album opener "Middle Fingers Up" is astonishing once it warms up, offering the happiest incarnation of trap music this reviewer has ever heard. G-Dragon shows dexterity in the verses, acknowledging controversies head on. The chorus is sing-songy and jubilant, showing that G-Dragon's shouts of "middle fingers up" come more from a place of playfulness than aggravation with the world. By the third verse, GD is simply rapping his head off, modulating his voice in a way reminiscent of Kendrick Lamar at his most heated.

The next song, "Bullshit," packs an invigorating guitar sample and a surprise (but welcome!) traditional music influenced section, and the diverse range of influences come together to form one of the more musically intelligent "bangers" that G-Dragon has made. Follow-up "Super Star" is an unusually melancholy song for how heavy it hits, and its lush production recalls what made Song Mino's 2016 single "Body" great.

The title track of this release, ironically called "Untitled," is one of the most mature tracks G-Dragon has ever released. The song shows GD utilizing previously unheard vocal range and clarity. There are emotionally resonant highs, as well as a melody that makes sense (sometimes reinventing the ballad can be the wrong move!). It was overall a bold choice to use this as the title track, and the notion is appreciated by fans who wanted G-Dragon to diversify his image among the general public. With the aforementioned circumstances, coincidental timing has worked in G-Dragon's favor; such an emotionally potent song will be appreciated by fans having a rough time processing T.O.P.'s situation.

Outro track "Divina Commedia" immediately stands out because of how much it recalls Daft Punk's "Veridis Quo" from 2001 album 'Discovery.' Perhaps there was a sample or deliberate sound-alike here? Regardless, to listeners that can move on past the similarities, the track brings a moody ambiance that adds some depth to G-Dragon's emotional arsenal. He packs attitude into the chorus, with his words coming out like more of a sneer before melting into a distorted and auto-tuned puddle. GD talks about the highs and lows that come with success here, doing so in a way that allows listeners to get a glimpse at both his sincerity and his pain. Once again, G-Dragon proves that he is an expert at delivering "emotional bangers."

As a complete piece of art, 'Kwon Ji Yong' succeeds and manages to offer listeners a mix of what G-Dragon is known best for with a smattering of new tricks. GD shows maturity with this release, and each track is like a more potent and evolved version of his previous work (while still standing out as new and original material in its own right). Perhaps the only harsh criticism I have to offer is that the project feels under-stuffed! Fans waited a long time for a new solo release from G-Dragon, and it can be safely assumed that he recorded quite a few more than five tracks in the sessions for this release, so it's unclear why this release was held back from being a full-length LP. With 'Kwon Ji Yong,' G-Dragon uses his namesake and a lot of raw emotion to prove that he is truly "One of a Kind."


Album Production.....10
Album Concept.........9
Tracklisting...............8 (Note: this is not an indictment of the tracks included, rather, a plea for more! It just seems like so much trouble for YG to promote and distribute only five tracks, knowing that more are probably in the bank)


SEE ALSO: G-Dragon personally hands roses to his fans in Osaka

  1. G-Dragon
  2. kwon ji yong

Iheartv Tuesday, June 13, 2017

I cryed when I heard Untitled.......I can't understand Korean it just gave me the feels you know

ygbad_boy Sunday, June 11, 2017

WHAT? A positive review in AKP about G-Dragon's album?

Ashley_juarez Sunday, June 11, 2017

What I like about this album is that GD didn't really release it to appeal to the masses or gain recognition (although hes king so it did), but put it out for the fans. I feel like there was this message GD was/is trying to get across, but really just wanted a final goodbye to fans before enlistment.

MunchieMinx Saturday, June 10, 2017

I really agree with the last part I would have loved maybe 3-4 more tracks since more than likely this is his last full party before military stuff and who knows what else I got the digital and just want more so much! Yes I am a greedy gut I admit it!

ShalikaLopez MunchieMinx Sunday, June 11, 2017

hopefully this is like MADE album where another part will come out? or am I being to ambitious?;'D

MunchieMinx ShalikaLopez Sunday, June 11, 2017

Nothing was ever harmed by dreams and hope! Wishes, prayers--all in for a part two or intermission for the third act!

Fatimaaxo Saturday, June 10, 2017

Allkpop knows what's up

kiko_san Saturday, June 10, 2017


kiko_san Saturday, June 10, 2017

World Music Awards G-Dragon is the 1st K-Pop male solo artist to reach #1 on the iTunes Worldwide Album Chart! With the release of his new solo Album 'Kwon Ji Yong', BIGBANG's G-DRAGON broke 2 world records, becoming the first Korean Male Artist to reach #1 on the iTunes Worldwide Album Chart and the Korean Artist with the most NUMBER 1 on iTunes album chart! Congrats!

Sdkokproject Saturday, June 10, 2017

I like superstar.

NoonaVip Saturday, June 10, 2017

Uh it's a 10🙄

kookiemonstah Saturday, June 10, 2017

When he first released this...let's say EP, like everybody else I was like "what?? only 5 songs??" but now that I thought it through I get why he released only 5. We all know he has so many songs written already, do they all fit the concept of this album? Probably not. Are they good enough to be released? I doubt all of them are. Will he release more songs before he enlists? Maybe. I don't think this is his worst album. It's the most raw and emotional one for sure. After 4 years people expected an album full with bangers, what did they get? They got one proper banger (Bullshit) and now most of them are disappointed bc they had certain expectations that weren't fulfilled. I agree with the review that GD shows maturity with this album. No wonder he says that he came back as Kwon Jiyong and not G-Dragon. But calling this album bad or boring is kind of inappropriate imo.

LOVEBIGBANGTAEYA Saturday, June 10, 2017

i dont care people said 5 is not enough or whatever. for me GD RULES!!! KING of THE KING is back ! his songs are awesome, his voice are dope, the untitled 2014 touches a lot of hearts, and all 5 tracks are about his life which is so beautiful and artistic i love it, both Kwon Jiyong and G-Dragon are awesome. oppa saranghaeeee

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