Crossover Group Forestella made a comeback with a music release for their third full-length album [The Forestella] which is set to come out on 30 April 2021. A total of 10 songs including covers, renditions, and originals spanning 42:20 minutes was released on various music sites on 19 April 2021. This is their first full-length album in 2 years, after Mystique in 2019.
The group, known for their experimentation and majestic rearrangements, has not held back in this album either. From ballad to pop to disco and funk, [The Forestella] has it all. With its different moods of hope, heartache, ‘thrill’, and excitement, this album has been aptly titled ‘The Forestella’, as a reflection of the group itself.
Towards a Happier World:
The pre-album singles released by the group last year as messages of hope and comfort in the present pandemic situation, have been included in ‘The Forestella’.
‘Nella Fantasia’, a rendition of Sarah Brightman’s original, is first on the tracklist. Translating to ‘In My Fantasies’, this song moves from Hyungho’s impressive high-pitched Soprano, to Doohoon’s sentimental and lively vocals, to Woorim’s warm and weighty bass, firmly supported throughout by Mingyu’s flaming tenor. Forestella’s signature harmonies flow like a river in this song, painting a vivid dream-scape of a happier world.
The 2nd track on the album is ‘Words From The Wind‘, a comforting song gently nudging one to leave the regrets of the past and the worries of the future behind, and go live in ‘today’. Initially released in August last year, this song is now more relevant than ever. At #9 is ‘Together’, which was also released last year with a music video. Forestella sings “Because we are together, I am not afraid” – a perfect message reminding us that though distant from each other, we are all together in these tough times. The song is written by Lee Chihoon and sees Forestella participating in the composition, alongside SNNNY.
In the Style of Forestella:
Reinterpretations of global classics – Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’, Celine Dion’s ‘My Heart Will Go On’ and Queen’s ‘We Are The Champions’ and a Korean version of Serge Lama’s French ‘Je Suis Malade’ are also included in the track-list of the album.
Forestella’s version of Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ is the title track of [The Forestella]. This rendition has the Fore-flavour while also easily retaining the intrigue and catchiness of the original. The rendition of Queen’s ‘We Are The Champions’ which gave Forestella their record-breaking victory in Immortal Songs 2 ‘2020 King of Kings’ special also makes it to the 3rd album. But what perhaps has caught most fans by surprise is the inclusion of the Titanic OST ‘My Heart Will Go On‘. All three songs are fresh with the touch of majestic harmony of a crossover quartet, and they will surely get stuck in your head and on your playlist for quite a while.
Having recently performed Serge Lama’s ‘Je Suis Malade’ on the JTBC show Phantom Singer AllStarz and gotten a shout out from the man himself, ‘The Forestella’ also features ‘Alone with Tears’ a Korean version of this French original. ‘Alone With Tears’ is a beautiful blend of melody and spoken word, conveying the throbbing ache and desperation of a love lingering long after it’s gone. Forestella’s emotional involvement in their performances shines bright in this song, which has been written by PABAKI and group member Doohoon to retain the delicate emotions of the original.
The 5 original songs in the album touch a variety of genres like ballad, pop and semi-classical. Aside from Together and Words from the Wind, it includes 2020’s 4th pre-album single ‘Ties’ and 2 new tracks – ‘Your Song‘ and ‘One Love‘ (ft UK).
‘Ties’, the 3rd track listed, is a song inspired by traditional Korean music. It is an aching ballad of lost love, whose rawness is conveyed touchingly by the emotional and light voices harmonizing together. ‘Your Song‘, co-written by Forestella, is a ballad with a more picturesque lyrical set-up carried forth by deep and intense emotions.
Special Track ‘One Love’ created and performed in collaboration with UK is a fun & charged up song singing addressing the busyness and monotony of modern life while wanting to break from the routine to follow one’s heart instead of feeling the need to live up to others’ standards.
“We Are The Forestella“
Forestella has left its mark as a group that can play with different kinds of music and comes out successful, through their 3rd album, with the tagline “We Are The Forestella“. While the previous album [Mystique] leaned towards the classical side of the crossover, [The Forestella] leans towards popular musical genres, thereby showcasing its skills as a crossover group. The ‘division of labour’ followed by the group is quite impressive. In contrast with the dynamics in ‘Mystique‘, the two eldest members, in charge of the popular style of music take the lead here, while the two younger members, classically trained vocalists, skillfully adapt to the style and display a new side to themselves in the different songs. The carefully curated track-list is carried out perfectly to appeal to the general audience, while still retaining their roots with the crossover elements.
Overall, [The Forestella] is a package worth the wait. We can’t wait to watch all these songs being performed live in their 3rd album tour expected in the 2nd half of this year. The pre-sales for [The Forestella] is available on various seller websites till the 30th of this month, when the physical album is scheduled to release. Do get your copy of this beautiful one!
Picture Courtesy: Arts&Artists Entertainment
Video Courtesy: Universal Music Korea, JTBC Entertainment