Friday, June 23, 2017

[MUSIC VIDEO REVIEW] Blackpink - As If It's Your Last (2017)

Blackpink is back in your area! On Thursday June 22nd 2017, Blackpink released their newest single called As If It’s Your Last. It has different format from their previous hits. Blackpink launched As If It’s Your Last as a stand-alone single without album companion.

Bar rose high prior to Blackpink comeback in 2017. This is because all of their previous singles became success since debuting last year. Moreover, people also eager to see another girlband create summer anthem. This year’s summer scene is a bit dull after SISTAR, 2NE1, 4minute, and Wonder Girls disbandment.

With As If It’s Your Last, does Blackpink manage to provide summer anthem that everyone has been waiting for? Check out my review below………

Blackpink makes it clear that As If It’s Your Last is a fast paced song since the beginning. It opens with a glimpse of synthesizer sound followed by strong percussion. Then verses kick in where Jennie and Jisoo’s unique tone mixed with moombahton inspired instruments.

Verses are the strongest part of As If It’s Your Last. It has high energy and manages to grab people attention at the first place. Beside that, the instrumental adapts well with the current tropical house trend in international music scene.

The moombahton music changes during the bridge. Electronic dance music along with strong guitar riff companion comes in. It’s nice to see Blackpink keep YG Entertainment electronic music signature. However, it does not work well here.

The transition between moombahton and electronic dance music sounds jarring. It sounds like several songs combined into one. Aside from disjointed transition, As If It’s Your Last chorus falls flat. It cannot finish the strong build up in earlier part. How I wish they kept the moombahton element throughout the song.

Still, As If It’s Your Last is a nice track to sing and dance along. You will easily remember the lyrics while enjoy it together with your friends. It once again shows how YG Entertainment capability to produce banger compared to other agencies.

Surprisingly, As If It’s Your Last music video does not have the same problem like the song. It manages to combine different type of elements while makes it pleasing for viewers’ eye. The colorful visualization captures people attention since the first time.

The usage of bright colors with various setting such as station and parking lot successfully makes music video interesting. It does not make us dizzy since Blackpink tries to maintain same color tone. I love how black and pink tone dominates the whole music video.

Blackpink appearance is another plus point for As If It’s Your Last music video. Their makeup, styling, and costumes are on point this time. Their gorgeous appearance was emphasized with fast editing and close up shot. It makes all Blackpink members able to shine on their own.

As If It’s Your Last music video also shows Blackpink great screen presence. Each members command attention in different way, especially Jennie. Compared to their previous edgy release, the girls look more comfortable in cheerful song. They constantly smile while sing about fall in love. It successfully maintain the high energy atmosphere of As If It’s Your Last.

As If It’s Your Last is a safe attempt for Blackpink during summer season. This song is catchy enough although it needs many rooms for improvement. Meanwhile, the music video showcases bright element that fits summer theme.

So is As If It’s Your Last our answer for K-Pop girlband summer anthem? It’s still far from iconic title, but Blackpink potential shows that they are on the way there.

Rating:            3/5

Thursday, June 1, 2017


After seven years of their career, SISTAR announced disbandment on May 23rd, 2017. This decision was quite unexpected by public. SISTAR’s songs still received well and they still active performing in various events recently. Then the members’ relationship was good between each other too.

However, SISTAR felt that it’s time to put an end for the group and focus on their individual path. It’s sad, but the girls tried to cover it up by giving us one last comeback. On May 31st 2017, SISTAR released their goodbye single called Lonely.

So, are you ready to say goodbye to SISTAR? Check out my review for Lonely below………………

Lonely proves that SISTAR is not just one-dimensional group. This song is far from SISTAR usual cheerful and upbeat singles. Lonely offers more medium tempo sound with simple instrumental. It has acoustic and electronic guitar melody that dominated the whole song.

The vocal treatment was different from other SISTAR singles too. Hyorin, Soyu, and Dasom plays out with their softer voice while Bora maintained her signature rap style. SISTAR voices mixed well with instrumental sound. This makes Lonely soothing and pleasant to listen.

Lonely deals with how relationship change based on its lyrics. SISTAR feels that their relationship is not the same again. Their partner becomes distant and makes SISTAR lonely. The girls express this condition during catchy refrain part. I am sure you will easily remember ‘Lonely, lonely, lonely’ hook.

At the same time, Lonely lyrics also represent SISTAR career. They decide to end their relationship just like their career. Still, SISTAR does not want to bury themselves in sorrowful situation. The girls want to cherish their happy memories through Lonely music video.

SISTAR bond is the highlight of Lonely music video. We see how each member looks close and enjoy each other company. It’s bittersweet to see them play around in hotel room, laugh along on the street, and take picture together.

Lonely music video also creates homage to their signature sexy concept. One scene shows SISTAR walk in beach with sleeveless shirt and hot pants. This reminds us with SISTAR previous video clip such as Loving U or Alone. Our memories comeback again when SISTAR decide to dance their previous hits during beach scene.

Since Lonely theme is more melancholy, music video tone tries to capture this mood.  The usage of color seems softer instead of bright like SISTAR previous video clip. Lonely music video also focuses on showing quiet scenery in Macau setting. Take a look at how the shot of empty streets dominated throughout music video.

Lonely is a beautiful goodbye from SISTAR. The song was nice to listen while the music video complements it well. It’s nice to see SISTAR tries something fresh at the end of their career. They choose melancholy song instead of the usual bright summer songs.

Still, I wish SISTAR release another summer anthem beside Lonely.  It would be great to see SISTAR smashes with their last summer comeback and leaves their legacy. But, I take what I get and I am glad with it. It’s better than left with nothing, right?

SISTAR will always be one of my favorites girl group. Thank you for lighting up K-Pop music scene with your catchy yet fun summer tracks for the past seven years. Thank you for letting people know that it is not wrong to be sexy as long as you are comfortable. At last, thank you for setting example that every woman is beautiful no matter how different their skin colors, body shapes, concepts, and mannerisms are. You will be missed.

Rating:            3.5/5

PS: While reminiscing old SISTAR hits, check out my review of their various summer comebacks here.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017


It’s summer time again, which means another showdown! After focusing on girl groups and soloists in previous year, I decide to make a change this year. In 2017, it will be boy group showdown between iKON and Seventeen.

Both iKON and Seventeen had  comeback on the same day, May 22nd 2017. iKON released single album called NEW KIDS: BEGIN with two title tracks, Bling Bling and B-Day. Meanwhile, Seventeen launched their new mini album AI1. It has Don’t Wanna Cry as title track.

iKON and Seventeen comeback has garnered public anticipation. This is because both are young and rising boy groups in K-Pop music scene. So, how does their comeback going? Who come out on top? Check out my review below………

iKON – Bling Bling & B-Day

Bling Bling and B-Day is the usual YG Entertainment club banger. Both songs dominated by electronic music, unique hook, and loud chants. However, iKON still tries to showcase thing that make them different from other YG Entertainment groups.

In Bling Bling, iKON offers grittier sound. This song manages to put B.I. and Bobby rap upfront. Their rapping seems raw, especially after being complemented with strong horn instrumental. In fact, Bling Bling sounds more cohesive if they only keep the rap part. 

The vocal part unfortunately fails to get similar spotlight. iKON members’ soft vocal often get covered up with loud music. Even Junhoe who has deeper voice, must auto-tuned his voice in Bling Bling. The rap and vocal part does not mix well together. It disrupts the song dynamic. 

Bling Bling tells a story about how iKON brags about their skills. This lyrical theme is clearly seen on the music video. It displays various luxurious properties and setting. This then accompanied by flashy camera effect, which eventually becomes double-edged sword for Bling Bling music video. I like that it's bold and eye-catchy. But, it also looks tacky. 

While Bling Bling focus on iKON rawness, B-Day brings their youthful aspect. It talks about how the boys like to have fun. This song combined hip-hop and rock music. It's interesting to hear B.I. and Bobby rap with electronic guitar riff as its background. The vocal also sounds stronger too compared to Bling Bling. I love the song dynamic! It really pumps up our spirit.

The music video also displays iKON fun aspect. It shows how the boys roaming around in forest-like setting. Then we get a glimpse of B-Day choreography, which looks energetic. Aside from fun, B-Day music video also seems bizarre. Take a look at the scene where iKON members turn into bee. This reminds me with TWICE change into alien in Signal music video. 

Rating:            3/5

Seventeen – Don’t Wanna Cry

Seventeen tries out something new with Don't Wanna Cry. They leave their usual high energy and cheerful music and change to something more melancholic. Seventeen vocal seems softer in the verses as well as its music. It sounds lovely while also fits the song theme, which is about trying to forget your former girlfriend. Beside that, the line distribution provides nice surprise. We finally hear rappers' singing voice for title track!

Although the vibe is different from previous title tracks, Seventeen tries to bring out their signature style. Electronic music still becomes the main element of this song. I really love the dreamy synthesizer and percussion sound in Don't Wanna Cry verses. It adds more dynamic to the song.

However, Don't Wanna Cry chorus does not able to continue its lovely verses. The electronic breakdown sounds cliche and lazy. I wish they create something stronger instead of repeating the same phrase throughout the chorus. They could make the good use of Seventeen powerful vocalists. 

Meanwhile the music video itself perfectly describes sorrowful theme of Don't Wanna Cry. We see all Seventeen members wandered around in Los Angeles street. Their expression looks sad and lonely. This accompanied by beautiful cinematography and fast editing. The music video does a good job in showing members of Seventeen without looking too crowded.

It's also great to see Seventeen keep their choreography scene in Don't Wanna Cry music video. The choreography looks sleek and graceful, so it matches the song theme. I love the music video shot when Seventeen dance in the middle of desert. 

Rating:            3.75/5

iKON and Seventeen tries to prove themselves in this comeback. iKON seems eager to establish their signature music and style as a way to differentiate them from other YG Entertainment groups. As for Seventeen, they want to show something fresh and more ear-friendly to public.

It's great to see both groups explore themselves in early days of their career. However if I have to choose, Seventeen comes out on top. Their song and music video complemented well. 

Still if we look at the bigger picture, both songs are not outstanding releases from iKON and Seventeen. We know they have potential to do much better!

Monday, May 15, 2017


Nothing can stop TWICE at this moment. Three months after releasing their TWICEcoaster: Lane 2 album, the girls are ready to launch new music. TWICE just released their new album called Signal on Monday, May 15th 2017.

Signal is a mini album, which consisted of same name title track and other five songs. This album feels special since JYP finally composes TWICE title track for the first time. Many people have anticipated whether JYP manage to create another hit for his idols. Also, people were curious to see if TWICE could continue their success streak.

So, does Signal meet people anticipation? Check out my review for TWICE newest music video below…………………….

Signal once again showed JYP capability to create catchy melody. This song will grab people attention since the first listen because of addictive rap part. It then followed by lovely singing verse and chorus. The latter is the best part in Signal. It differentiates this song from TWICE previous hits.

Rather than the usual powerful chorus, TWICE takes more laid back approach here. I really like the ‘jjirit jjirit’ part. It sounds adorable and easy to remember! Other than chorus, Signal also shows differences in TWICE vocal distribution. It is surprising to see vocalists like Jihyo, Nayeon, and Jungyeon lead verses with Jungyeon gets the biggest part. Meanwhile, Tzuyu and Sana takes on chorus. This change spices up Signal a bit as TWICE song.

Good melody and vocal distribution must have proper other elements to accompany them. Unfortunately, this is where Signal falls. The song structure is messy with its sudden transition. It becomes confusing when people start to enjoy the melody, but the song abruptly takes different turn.

The music arrangement also makes this disjointed part clearer. Signal only has strong drum and bass beat along with synthesizer throughout the song. This simple arrangement fails to cover up transition. Plus, it makes some TWICE members’ weakness in vocal sounds visible.

Meanwhile the music video itself is able to make up song flaws. TWICE manage to bring back their fun signature in Signal music video. It is interesting to see domination of all those pop colors such as pink, red, and yellow.

TWICE members look gorgeous too, especially when they styled as retro girls. Moreover, we get glimpse of Signal choreography. It seems easy to remember, so there is a high chance that it would become viral.

Aside from fun, TWICE also known for their quirky style. Signal might be TWICE most bizarre music video yet. It tells a story about how TWICE members fall in love with an alien. They try to get alien attention by sending signal just like the song lyrics. The funny thing is TWICE shows their interests by displaying super powers. Take a look at Mina’s way to hypnotize the alien or Momo’s action to run fast in front of the alien. We enjoy all of their actions, but wait until you see twist at the ending ;)

With Signal, TWICE showed that they could create another memorable song again. It has catchy melody although paired up with disjointed arrangement. The music video itself continues to display TWICE fun and quirky charm.

TWICE still has long way to go to showcase their potential as a group or individual. It’s great to see them manage to create consecutive hit while keep their momentum. However, I wish TWICE slow down a little bit. They could take a break to prepare for their new music and increase its material quality. They don’t have to be worried since we will patiently wait for them J 

Rating                         : 3/5