Benzene Jo

Se Jun Park, Na Yun Sik, Min Ji Kim , Jae Kyung Song , Nyeom Lee and YU HUI HYEON

 
" Lee Nyeom contributes a total of four cues, and amazingly all four are very appealing. "

Written by Joep de Bruijn - Review of the download only release

Benzene Jo (Vincenzo) is a 2021 South Korean television series which tells the story of a young boy named Park Joo-hung, adopted by an Italian family. As he grows up, he becomes a lawyer, a counselor of the Cassano mafia and is being trusted by Don Fabio. After Fabio dies, new winds emergence, and after a failed assassination on his life, he flees to South Korea. He and another lawyer take on a case of reclaiming a building and fortune of a deceased Chinese tycoon, which again puts them in a complicated situation.

As expected, it's a K-drama series full of crime, deceit, action, humor and a romantic touch. For the music, it seems like a 'trend' in recent year K-dramas, a huge team of composers was attracted to write an original score, led by Park Se Jun and joined by names such as Song Jin Suk, Kim Min Ji, Lee Nyeom and Woo Ji Hun, all coming from a background as a musician, singer and/or actor, and some co-scored a variety of other K-dramas.

The more than 2.5 hours long release includes some songs, classical pieces and original score. Its use of the long overdue clichéd touch of 'elegance' by certain classical pieces to a crime and mafia related project is unwarranted. In the same genre as the series the score by Jeong Du-Hong - Dalkomhan Insaeng (A Bittersweet Life) is a noteworthy example of such similar class that easily exceeds such classical pieces.

I have no idea how to describe Park Se Jun’s music in general, and cannot tell what makes his musical contributions in 46 cues of the Binseno Jo score, together with numerous others, hold any appeal or memorability, because it really doesn’t. In numerous of K-dramas there are often at least a few individual cues that are praiseworthy, but there are much inconsistencies and hugely deviating quality in terms of music. Binseno Jo’ score includes hip electronics, rock-'n-roll, electronic ambience, quirky (Italian, South American) rhythmic cues, some elegant bits and pieces for (solo) piano and strings, music that sounds like demos and a lot of very generic music.

The quirky, tongue-in-cheek rhythmic cues, sometimes flavored by a very Italian feel, is highlighted by the rather amusing 'Night Of Sicily' (Park Se Jun & Song Jae Kyeong), with attractive staccato strings and accordion, while 'Addio' (Na Sang Jin & Park Se Jun) vaguely taps into similar terrain of the kind of Morricone would write for cues that go by the same name. 'Mom′s Letter'' (Kim Min Ji & Park Se Jun) is a nice cue for solo piano and solo cello.

Luckily, having such large number of composers involved, Lee Nyeom contributes a total of four cues, and amazingly all four are very appealing, even though there's some generic content. 'The Last of Babel' (Lee Nyeom) is a great horror cue, with good tension building, but is also a bit generic, and it shows something of quality and actually feels like it was written for a different project. 'Retributor' (Lee Nyeom & Jun Park Se) extends on the 'Night of Sicily' Italian vibe, with a great driving strings, solo violin, propulsive electronics and choir, and 'Undiavolo scaccia l′altro' (Lee Nyeom) does that with a similar, too familiar ostinato, choir, percussion, choir; generic, but a lot of fun. Lee Nyeom's fourth cue, 'Your Vacancy', is a nostalgic hymn for strings, piano, percussion and a wonderful performance by a wordless vocal; very lyrical and emotional.

Having seen half of the series episodes, I am inclined to say all the music does work on a very mediocre, but effective level, but musically in and out of context does suffer, especially as a 2.5 hour long listening. Aside from a few exceptions, it’s just not very well written music.





Tracklist
1. Ombra Mai Fu Sung Hoon Choi 3:01
2. Adrenaline (Italian Ver.) Aalia 3:27
3. Adrenaline Solar 3:26
4. Lacrimosa La Poem 3:47
5. Is This Love Aalia 3:37
6. I′M Always By Your Side John Park 3:51
7. Questo Edificio È Mio Song Jin Suk 2:14
8. Night Of Sicily Park Se Jun & Song Jae Kyeong 3:03
9. Mafia Kim Min Ji & Park Se Jun 3:33
10. The Last Of Babel Lee Nyeom 2:55
11. Appearance (Show Time) Na Sang Jin & Park Se Jun 1:51
12. For The Justice Woo Ji Hun & Park Se Jun 2:15
13. Jifuragi Na Sang Jin & Park Se Jun 1:58
14. Stopped Time Woo Ji Hun & Park Se Jun 3:40
15. Un Diavolo Scaccia L′Altro Lee Nyeom 2:48
16. Addio Na Yun Sik & Park Se Jun 3:15
17. If You Want Kim Dong Hyeok 1:32
18. Aspettate Woo Ji Hun & Park Se Jun 1:50
19. Holy Anger Na Sang Jin & Park Se Jun 2:46
20. Is This Love (Guitar Ver.) Park Se Jun & Kim Jae Hwan 2:08
21. Booty Woo Ji Hun & Park Se Jun 1:58
22. Finestra Di Espiazione Kim Ji Ae & Park Se Jun 3:07
23. Retributor Lee Nyeom & Park Se Jun 2:11
24. Lombirghini Song Jin Suk & Park Se Jun 2:12
25. Dark Side Of Me Na Sang Jin & Park Se Jun 2:05
26. A Silent Cry Na Yun Sik & Park Se Jun 2:41
27. Corn Salad Kim Tea Hwan & Park Se Jun 1:58
28. Country Of Kimchi Yu Hui Hyeon & Park Se Jun 1:29
29. Vincenzo The Phoenix Kim Dong Hyeok 1:58
30. Hold Back Yu Hui Hyeon & Park Se Jun 1:44
31. Bead Kim Ji Ae & Park Se Jun 2:11
32. Secret Weapon Woo Ji Hun & Park Se Jun 1:50
33. I′M Sorry I Didn′T Know Woo Ji Hun & Park Se Jun 2:07
34. Chaos Keumga Plaza Song Jae Kyung & Park Se Jun 2:21
35. Il Male È Grande E Vasto Na Sang Jin & Park Se Jun 2:34
36. Is This Love (Inst.) Kim Tea Hwan & Park Se Jun 2:05
37. Two Idiots Yu Hui Hyeon & Park Se Jun 1:55
38. Bungeoppang With My Mom Song Jin Suk & Park Se Jun 2:18
39. Doomsday Kim Dong Hyuk & Choi Moon Seok 2:14
40. Baksumudang Vincezo Yu Hui Hyeon & Park Se Jun 0:50
41. Zumba Dance Woo Ji Hun & Park Se Jun 2:04
42. Through The Years Song Jin Suk & Park Se Jun 2:12
43. Mom′S Letter Kim Min Ji & Park Se Jun 2:36
44. Your Vacancy Lee Nyeom 3:30
45. Exhale Choi Mun Seok & Kim Dong Hyuk 3:09
46. Why Are You Standing There Yu Hui Hyeon & Park Se Jun 1:34
47. Never Felt Better Yu Hui Hyeon & Park Se Jun 1:17
48. Lawyer Nem Song Jae Kyung & Park Se Jun 2:01
49. Happily Today As Well Na Yun Sik & Park Se Jun 1:34
50. Empty Mind Kim Min Ji & Park Se Jun 3:32
51. Inzaghi Song Jae Kyung & Park Se Jun 2:24
52. Anxious Monk Kim Tea Hwan & Park Se Jun 1:47
53. Cavalleria Rusticana Pietro Mascagni 3:32
54. Fish-Shaped Buns And Carp-Shaped Buns Na Yun Sik & Park Se Jun 1:32
55. Unmatched Cuteness Kim Min Ji & Park Se Jun 1:25
56. Sshabala Song Jin Suk & Hwang Seung Feel 1:59
57. March Of The Priests Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart 2:48
58. Pasta Party Na Yun Sik & Park Se Jun 1:18
59. It Smells Bad Somewhere Kim Tea Hwan & Park Se Jun 2:07
60. Nabucco Hebrew Slaves Chorus Giuseppe Verdi 3:54
61. Chaconne Sorro Song Jae Kyung & Park Se Jun 2:56
62. Where Is My Gold Song Jin Suk & Hwang Seung Feel 2:45
63. Vincenzo Theme But Gisuk Theme Na Yun Sik & Park Se Jun 2:33
64. Operation Start Na Yun Sik & Park Se Jun 2:01
65. Escape From Us Song Jin Suk & Park Se Jun 2:19
66. Rdu-90 Kim Min Ji & Park Se Jun 1:40
67. Gold Is In Our Hearts Lee Nyeom & Park Se Jun 2:02

Total duration: 161:16


(written 24-05-2021)
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(total of 2 votes - average 3.5/5)

Released by

Genie Music Corporation (download only release 2021)