Album of the Month – William Wei ‘Journey Into the Night’
Happy May! The weather still can’t make up it’s mind. It keeps doing some lovely 20-30 degree jumps in a single week. Adding to horribly fluctuating temperatures is the fact the wild weather from winter is following us into other seasons. Not to say there is snow, but just crazy weather with lots of wind, precipitation, and some rather nasty storms. Got to love it…I guess. Back to the topic on hand. I was thinking and thinking about just what album that I wanted to feature this month. March’s album was by a Korean indie band (who I think have actually disbanded in April, sigh). April’s album was Korean indie again with project group Standing Egg’s spring-like album Ambler. So, lots of Korean music, huh? Nothing wrong with that as I do listen to more Korean music, but I think it’s good to feature some other non-Korean music. How about some great Chinese music?
The album of the month for May is Journey Into the Night by William Wei (aka Wei Li An, Weibird, Weibird Wei). Weibird, a Taiwanese artist, apparently was a talent show winner (I don’t follow American talent programs let alone foreign ones, so it’s always news to me to learn this). He’s also not just a singer, but a songwriter, too. I don’t know if I have listened to much of his music before discovering his February 2014 single 狼 (Wolf). With that song, I was hooked. One month later and he released the full-length album Journey Into the Night. The amazing thing about this album is just really how diverse it is. There is a particular name for fusion music which mixes traditional Chinese pop with modern pop and I forget the name, but this album has several examples of these songs. It also has straight up pop songs and ballads. I love that it fuzes the traditional with the modern. Pop with rock with ballads. It makes for a very great album that keeps your attention. And even if there are diverse genres, it does gel together on a whole.
01. 狼 [Lang; Wolf]
This is a song where more traditional Chinese music meets modern pop. It’s an interesting fusion song and surprisingly, I found myself really enjoying this song when it was released as a single and then as part of this whole album.
02. 沉船 [Chénchuán; Sinking Ship]
After the fusion song, we go into a gorgeous ballad. I like how it starts off soft and rises in volume to go back into the soft singing and raise again. In the music, we also get a faint marching drumbeat it seems like.
03. 金銀島(feat.Matzka) [Jīnyín dǎo;Treasure Island]
Another more fusion song. This one actually sounds like it’s part of a children’s song, lol. This is also an interesting song if you listen to the vocals and wasn’t aware, like I was initially, that there was someone else featuring in the song. I was trying to figure out how Weibird could change his voice so much, but it wasn’t him in the chorus. It’s rather an amazing effect that works well with the overall tone of the song.
04. 在你身邊 [Zài nǐ shēnbiān; By Your Side]
Weibird’s voice is so sensitive and sweet in this song! I could gush all day.
05. 江郎 [Jiāng láng; Drained]
Love the piano and the strings in this ballad. The cool thing is about a minute and a half into the song we start getting some heavier guitar sounds under the beautiful melody and it’s an interestingly good combination.
06. 格雷的畫像 [Géléi de huàxiàng; Picture of Dorian Gray]
This song…is a good song. It has a mysterious quality about it, but I have to say the sound effects kind of shocked me and freaked me out when I first heard it…probably because I was listening to it in my car and wondering what the heck was making that noise and then I realized it was the song. It’s a great song…but I do wonder about how much better it could be minus the sound effects.
07. 面具 [Miànjù; Mask]
This was the second song off the album I listened to as Linfair uploaded the MV to their YouTube channel. It’s such a beautiful ballad and showcases Weibird’s vocals well. Love, love, love.
08. 迷路(feat.蛋堡) [Mílù (feat. Dàn bǎo); Lost]
We go from a beautiful ballad to a swing beat or is it more jazz or a mix of the two? Definitely a diverse album. I don’t hate this song, but if I picked a least favorite song, it would be this one as it’s not a favorite genre of mine. Still good, but not my cup of tea. I do like, again, that electric guitar coming in underlying the main beat to add some rock edge.
09. 生存之道 [Shēngcún zhī dào; Survival Guide]
Just like if I had to pick a least favorite…if I were to pick my favorite, it would be this song. It’s a nice medium song after the slower ballads and more of the fusion tracks. It’s highly addictive and an awesome song overall.
10. 相信誰 [Xiāngxìn shuí; Sheep]
I like the stop and go portions of this song. The music and vocals build, brief pause, and then the song continues on.
11. 曙光 [Shǔguāng; Breaking Dawn]
I can’t think of anything but the horribleness that was Twilight when I first see anything referencing “Breaking Dawn” together. This song is thankfully much better than that less than stellar book and movie series. This is a more medium/up beat song in comparison to the ballads. About 2:40 into the song…LOVE that instrumental part! Towards the end…it’s an interesting ending and definitely different in comparison to the song’s beginning.
I will definitely be checking out all of Weibird’s past works now a well as keeping an ear out for any future releases.