Before I listened to AsuRa BalBalTa, I only listened to the big singles that LeeSsang had previously released. With two years between this album and their 6th, I wasn’t really sure what to hear.
With album singles releasing before the full album, I was able to get a hint on the album with “TV를 껐네… (Feat. 윤미래, 권정열)” was a song that contained a different tone for hip-hop. There are many other groups that use melody in incredible ways, but that single and its accompanying music video pushed a different kind of theme and tone. It’s still one of my favorite LeeSsang songs.
AsuRa BalBalTa contains guest vocals from many artists along other genres. Bizzy and 강산에 guest on “죽기 전까지 날아야 하는 새” presenting hoarse, but melodic vocals and a groove that uses lighter beats accented with smaller melodic tones. It’s an amazing conglomeration of styles.
One of the more surprising songs is “격산타우 (Feat. Guckkasten)” because it uses the band as the background and 하현우 as a powerful addition to 개리 and 킬. It’s a perfect arrangement of using the core sound of a rock band and molding LeeSaang to their style rather than just simply sample the music to their needs. 격산타우 shows that LeeSang considers who their working with in the creation of their songs/
AsuRa BalBalTa was a favorite album of 2011 because it expanded Korean hip-hop by presenting a mix of the old and new. The old style of LeeSsang still exist on the album, but they have learned a lot more tricks.