Tohoshinki, rampaging through the Japanese (among other countries') pop scene, brought together a third album as a double-disc (also available as a two-CD, two-DVD extravaganza). Though the members are Korean, their biggest success has been in the Japanese market, and in the course of the long T, the boy band gets to show off all of the good and bad points of the Japanese pop standards. The album opens with "Trick," a chaotic mess of sounds that ranges from quick tidbits of four-part harmonies to shouted, grunted versions of Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal." The track never gels, standing as a messy way to open a set. Within a couple of tracks, the group has made it to "Purple Line," using a heavy barrage of percussion in conjunction with more careful harmonies (and at least a couple of sound effect nods to classic boy bands like Boyz II Men) to bring together a much better sound, focusing on the group's formidable vocal abilities and harmonization. Ballads like "Forever Love" are perhaps a bit more standard, but are also well-engineered for the group, focusing more on the group dynamic than the (more fallible) individual personas. "Ride On" is tinged with a bit of Rockwell, and "Darkness Eyes" with a touch of gothic elements. "Shine" could be a leftover from a slightly jazzy mid-'90s R&B session and comes off surprisingly well. "Last Angel" was a bit hit for the band in conjunction with Kumi Koda, but the version on T has no Koda, just the band weakly attempting to cover her portions. Similarly, Clap! bears elements from groups like *NSync and C+C Music Factory, but seems lost in the mid-'90s. The group has a lot of ability, but can't quite seem to decide whether to use it for good or tuck it away in over-engineered pop evil.
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