A quick look at “I <3 Natural” by Lee Jung Hyun (2002)

February 17, 2021Posted in2000s, albums, K-pop, Korea, Lee Jung Hyun, pop

“I ❤ Natural” is one of the more straightforward and clear albums from the legendary K-pop star Lee Jung Hyun. Even though the unclear “wildlife” theme confuses a bit. Everything’s either brown or toned-down, which doesn’t at all align with the music, that is her usual colorful and powerful eurotechno-pop. Overall less video/image niceness seems to have been made for this album, but maybe “I ❤ Natural” serves a different purpose. It’s an album packed with hits, that’s less experimental than her earlier albums but still as great. It largely follows a simple pop formula, but this simple pop formula is a great formula – you can put on whichever song on the album and know you’ll get something nice. “I ❤ Natural” is a great pop album, with both a lot of fun and a lot of structure. Lee Jung Hyun really pleases the audience on this one.

Ballads like “Believe” and “Sun Flower” stand out from the album style-wise, as do songs like “Hate You” and “Brighter Than Sunshine”, which have some (for the time) modern rnb-pop influences that the rest of the album lacks. Most of the rest of the music sounds more like late 90s than early 2000s, and is kind of nostalgic even though the 90s just was. “Ari Ari” (“아리아리”) can summarize the album with its simple catchiness, its clear verse, bridge and chorus, and its sing-a-long-ness. A hit song of the times, which can also be said about (what I suppose to be) lesser known songs like “Dara Dara” (“달아 달아”)“Time Machine”“뭘 더 바래?” and “Look At Me” (“날 봐”).

I like how Lee Jung Hyun’s strong feminine voice is melodic alongside the synths throughout the whole album. These melodies are simple but very special. There’s something with the chord structures and melodies that’s not too much and not too little but just right. They’re just nice.

Lee Jung Hyun wildlife/natural gallery: