For the 5th week of 2012 we will be reviewing EXO-K’s “What Is Love”, F.T.Island’s “Severely”, Se7en’s “When I Can’t Sing”, Miryo’s “Dirty”, Block B’s “Nanrina” and Twi-light’s “Twilight”.
EXO-K’s “What Is Love”
January 29, 2012
As a “small” showcase of what EXO will be like, this song is fairly unimpressive. It isn’t unique or groundbreaking, and in fact, it had a very DBSK-esque vibe. EXO’s style of singing is so reminiscent of DBSK’s “Before U Go”, it’s just exacerbating. We were really hoping for something groundbreaking from SM Entertainment, but of course our hopes were too high. SM is just stuck making the same indistinguishable groups.
As for the song itself, it was really mundane. The singing was good but nothing distinctive or unprecedented. “What Is Love” is a really slow and long ballad, and truthfully seemed to drag on ceaselessly. It had a decent R&B vibe but there was no soul and no fire. Since they obviously weren’t able to give the song a sense of vehemence, EXO should not even be singing R&B. The singing didn’t convey any anguish or ardor, and as a result the song felt lifeless and limp.
We don’t really think that such a slow ballad was really the smart decision as a showcase for EXO, for as we all know, debuts of rookie boy groups will be saturating the entirety of 2012. In comparison to their competitors, EXO has already started off relatively weak.
“What Is Love” as a video was beautiful. It was simple and clean, and could have actually been even more minimalistic and still good. The attempt to combine all of the teaser clips into one video was a tad ridiculous. There wasn’t enough of a common link between any of the different clips, and it seemed like a crazy mash-up of everything we have been seeing for over a month now.
Though EXO doesn’t have any variation from the typical SM group, they do bring a sophistication that almost no other rookie group has. For example, though B.A.P (and we mean no fan wars, but as a simple comparison between two groups that are obviously going to be rivals) debuted strong, they still retained the ghetto-chic concept many groups are aiming for (now, whether they succeed or not is the question), whereas EXO is attempting a suave and sophisticated avenue (at least, based on this video). The fact they are not following this trend is commendable, but we hope they can become interesting enough.
The video did accomplish one thing though, and that is to pip our curiosity as to what kind of group EXO will emerge as.
EXO really just has to distinguish themselves from their label-mates, or they will become just as irrelevant as F(x).
F.T.Island – Severely
January 30, 2012
“Severely” is a typical rock-ballad. Compared to some of F.T.Island’s past releases, it appears they are going for a more emotional vibe rather than fun and jumpy. However, we can’t help but feel that, as compared to happier songs, “Severely” sort of lacked out. F.T.Island is plenty talented; they’re true musicians, and certainly know how to write good music and everyone knows Hongki is an amazing singer. We just aren’t feeling “Severely”. It’s specifically unmemorable and not the best song when you’re trying to stay awake.
All we have to say is: Really?
For the most part, this entire music video is basically a remake of JYJ’s “In Heaven”. The turning back time, saving-girl-from-getting-hit-by-a-car-by-pointlessly-sacrificing-yourself-instead-of-taking-her-damn-earphones-out endlessly cheesy plot. The only real difference was the fact that, half the time, we kept getting distracted by Hongki’s awful hair and really distractive nails.
Se7en – When I Can’t Sing
January 31, 2012
“When I Can’t Sing”, compared to, say “Digital Bounce”, is much more appreciate-able. The painful autotuning in “Digital Bounce” destroyed the beauty in Se7en’s voice, and this song does wonders bringing it back. The vocals were beautiful, and the melody was soft and pretty. The song was not a ballad however, as it remained uplifting and definitely far more complex than a simple “sad” tune. We would’ve appreciated it, however, if the song was more catchy- though catchiness doesn’t “make” a song, it definitely helps a lot, and while “When I Can’t Sing” was a beauty, it’s hard to remember it without the necessary “it-factor”.
The video was really pleasant in its message. It was really cute and extremely refreshing to see Se7en, acting as himself, and the daily struggles of an idol. Normally, we never really see such an approach taken, but in this case, the video fit the song perfectly. While there was no particular plot, there was definitely meaning, and we are presented with scenes of Se7en attempting to escape from fans for the joy of taking a leisurely, but plenty meaningful, stroll. The set (and snow) was beautiful, and though we normally don’t think much of videos without plots, Se7en has managed to make a “pointless” video meaningful and even a bit sad.
Miryo – Dirty
January 31, 2012
“Dirty” is, in a word, awesome. It’s a pretty well-known fact Miryo can rap like no other, and her rapping did not disappoint. Miryo was catchy, on point, and “Dirty” fell right into Miryo’s usual style of slightly feminine badassness. While her rapping we can definitely say we enjoyed, we wish we could say the same for the singing. Overall, the song was great, but we can’t help but feel the chorus was a bit lackluster. Most likely though, this is probably due to the fact that, the chorus, in this case, was a sort of chanting cheer, sort of like those choruses that are a lot more fun hearing live than in your earphones. The singing definitely got a lot better as the song carried on, and it was almost as if Miryo herself was getting more and more into the music.
Miryo you funny girl.
This music video was a total surprise. Upon seeing the teasers, we completely expected some horror-riveting plot. What do we get instead from one of the newly acclaimed biggest K-Pop trolls? Bras on faces, buff guys in underwear, Miryo flipping us off and plenty of butt-slapping for all.
Absurdities aside though, the video actually does have some real value. Miryo portrays a seemingly paralyzed girl (seemingly as she hilariously shows emotion throughout the entirety of the video), who witnesses several accounts of flirtation between her doctor and nurse, and, despairingly, her two best friends. Hurt and frustrated, Miryo gets back at them by the end, after finally regaining some control of her body. Only Miryo would sprinkle her adult humor into such a cute story.
Block B – Nanrina
February 01, 2012
“Nanrina” is amazing. Truthfully, the song takes over one listen to get used to, but once you get over the shock-busy factor, you learn to appreciate just how catchy the chorus is. The rapping is great, and Zico is sounding sexy- which actually brings us to our complaint. It was nice hearing Zico and everything, but this song was almost entirely him. The other members had a few lines spared here and there, but we hardly hear any of the other members. Zico is an amazing producer, and this song is perfect proof of that, but next time, better arrangement between the members should be the goal, because in all honesty, this is a problem in a lot of K-Pop groups.
The music video for “Nanrina” was everything there is to love about Block B condensed into five minutes: Block B’s derpiness, dorkiness, and childishness all in one video. There was obviously some precedent of making a cool, west-side story type plot, what with the two “gangs” having some sort of stand-off. Apart from the lame plot though, the members were looking good in their solo shots. The members looked great, and while Zico’s blonde hair is going to take some getting used to, he didn’t look awful either. The choreography was exceptional, and it was pretty hilarious that only B-Bomb and U-Kwon dared lift their shirts up. As an overall comeback of Block B, “Nanrina” was great; the members pulled off the concept rather well, and Block B came off much more mature and ready for business.
February 02, 2012
We didn’t really think there could ever be another music video that could compete with Six Bomb’s “Chiki Chiki Bomb” for the award of “Worst Music Video”, let alone with only the fact this came out a mere week after Six Bomb ‘s.
The song was atrocious, but unlike Six Bomb it was not offensively bad but hilarious. It was just a huge turd and plain awful.
The video was a rare creature, and pleasurably disgusting. EVERYTHING was wrong: the clothes, the makeup, the sets, the camera work. Whomever approved of this garbage should be sentenced to SM’s dungeon, because this is nothing more than a joke.