Jessi x Cheetah x Kangnam – “My Type” Review

Jessi x Cheetah x Kangnam – My Type (Audio)

Jessi x Cheetah x Kangnam – My Type (Audio + Lyrics)

Jessi (from Lucky J) x Cheetah x Kangnam (from M.I.B) – My Type

Reviewed on March 28, 2015

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Personal Message: Firstly, it has been a while since I have written anything; if I am accurate, a review on BESTie’s “I Need You,” my latest writing, was 5 days ago (and this is in perspective to the time I wrote this sentence). Though it does take time for reviews to get published, I generally devote some time, even if minimal, to write every day. This may also be perhaps why I have felt “lacking” these past few days, and in some ways, unable to relieve stress. Explaining the absence, however, I have been finishing shows, such as “Channel Fiestar” catching up on schoolwork, and considering I had to write a bit for that, it allowed me to properly transition into reviewing. On a highly unrelated note, I am currently using Times New Roman as the font for reviews. However, when this review becomes published, sadly or not, the font will not translate over. Nevertheless, I can see why this font is considered a standard (or at least for MLA format); long-term and long session writings can be rather eye straining, but Times New Roman is easier on the eye for whatever reason (personally, the concise appearance helps). At the very least, even if that is not the reason for why the font is considered the standard, writing reviews with the font does allow my eyes to become highly accustomed to it, and thus, academic related works will feel more natural and friendly versus occasionally feeling highly alien.

Progressing past technical digressions, as mentioned in my previous review, a special one will take place: a review on Korean Hip Hop. Though this may be the first K-Hip Hop song reviewed, it is not the first I have listened to; even if I do not actively listen to it as much as K-Pop or ballad, I still highly enjoy songs of this genre. In focus of “My Type,” the song’s format of combining standard singing and rapping is highly seducing, and, biasedly speaking, one of the best forms of Hip Hop. Continuing with the song and, in truth, something I should have mentioned at the very start, I will throw a profanity warning: “My Type” does utilize words that can be deemed offensive and inappropriate, and though I am incredibly certain that practically every reader is of a mature enough age or mentality to understand the used language, a few may be highly uncomfortable and thus, I will deliver this warning. The audio links I used, a standard audio and a lyrics video one (I have not truly checked the accuracy of the lyrics, but I am certain it is accurate) do not censor out the words. Nevertheless, to offer my personal stance regarding the language, firstly, it is highly minimal (in fact, it is solely 3 occasions) and not derogatory and exaggerated; this song does not utilize certain words on the sole basis of instilling shock, but rather, to deliver a specific tone and meaning.

On that note, swearing, while personally uncomfortable, can be highly effective, and with situations where it is deemed effective, I am willing to accept it. The issue with swear words is their overuse and misuse; too often an unnecessary curse is attached to every sentence, and in combination, certain words that are highly demeaning are used. However, swear words are not entirely out of place, and in specific scenarios, are the most pressing words possible. For example, claiming the porn industry f***s females, literally and figuratively, can be vastly more potent than other phrases. In fact, even males are equally damaged and f***ed by what the porn industry promotes. Though I will not dive into that discussion as of this time, if a reader is highly curious on my take of pornography, I would love to discuss it as, due to obvious reasons, it is seldom discussed which, however, contributes to its effectiveness of promoting certain negative ideas. Overall, on the topic of swearing, it is not entirely bad as long as it is within boundaries. As a final example, one that is to a lighter degree than the former, swearing to bring in humor and personality is highly more effective than the general use of swearing relentlessly for absolutely no purpose other than perhaps improperly expressing anger.

Now to truly focus on the K-Hip Hop song of “My Type,” readers may recognize it as it is an OST from the rapping competition show, “Unpretty Rapstars.” If not that, those familiar with AOA will most likely recognize the show as the group’s leader, Jimin, is participating in it. Though I have yet to watch an episode, it seems enticing in terms of the raps heard. Truthfully speaking, though my heart should be with Jimin and hoping for her to win, I confess, Jessi has been the rapper I have been supporting the most. Perhaps since Jessi is “My Type” as I am utterly captivated by her voice and personality has showcased phenomenal rapping skills, and additionally, from outside of “Unpretty Rapstars,” equally outstanding singing (she is in the group Lucky J; “Can You Hear Me” is an impressive song by the men and lady), she has won my support. Ignoring my personal stances on who I wish wins the competition, all the participants are highly talented, and I am glad “Unpretty Rapstars” brings spotlight to the ladies who, though exceptionally talented, are, ironically, exceptionally unrepresented in general media.

With the subject of under representation, before entirely discussing that, I will first bring attention to the rap show’s title: “Unpretty Rapstars.” Though I do not know the technicalities of the show and how the competition is even conducted (I have only watched the rap performances), as mentioned, I appreciate its idea of bringing in female rappers as they are highly ignored (discussion on this later). However, in terms of the title, I would have preferred the show being called “Pretty Rapstars” or even simply “Rapstars.” While the current title can be seen as a form of satire, bringing in its ultimate message in a direct manner would, biasedly, seem more effective. Currently, “Unpretty Rapstars” is coined as such due to challenging the general consensus of how the rappers attending, or more accurately phrased, female rappers, and actually even more precisely, females in general, are “unpretty” due to not following societal expectations. Specifically for the show, many of the participants are rendered as “unpretty” due to drifting away from society’s general idea of a lady being “pretty”; the rappers are swearing, dissing one another, acting bluntly, and more, and interestingly, those types of behavior, through socialized concepts, causes the rappers to be classified as “unpretty.” Tracing back my initial argument, the show, while its satirical approach is not necessarily wrong, could have labeled the show as “Pretty Rapstars” in order to give a more direct message on how, despite the participants acting in ways that society deems unfit for females, are still, as the would be title, “Pretty.” Current ideas on “pretty” are highly tunnel-visioned, restrictive, and overall, simply false and used to further oppress females. As long as one is simply a female, or even a male, a human should have the automatic luxury of being deemed “pretty”; gender standards and gender behavioral expectations should not be utilized for defining who is pretty or not. Instead, the character of a person should be the determining factor, not gender or even other characteristics such as race.

Returning to the topic of female rappers being under represented, though I lack statistics as of now, I am dangerously confident that there is data unequivocally proving that more rappers presented in media are male than females; even without data, off the top of my head, truly, without “Unpretty Rapstar,” I would be unable to name any female rapper that is in the K-Hip Hop genre or a solo rapper (I am excluding regular group rappers such as AOA’s Jimin, Sistar’s Bora, Nine Muses’ Euaerin, for a few). For example, Mad Clown, Iron, and Verbal are a few K-Hip Hop artists, all of whom are male. Without “Unpretty Rapstar,” no female rapper or K-Hip Hop artist comes to mind. Of course, this does, very sadly, translate elsewhere besides music. Sports are a prime example; though personally speaking I am incredibly ignorant on sports and could not name a single athlete, male or female, I still have the ability to claim this: more males athlete are showcased in media than females (and though earlier I was speaking in perspective to Korean media, for sports, I will be in the perspective of American media).

Now, as for why I am mentioning this disparity, a large motivation is such; people, male and female, have become blinded to an androcentric society. It has become entirely normalized for males to dominate the screens, jobs, authoritative positions, and more. Sharing an incident with a friend (and as always, I am not here to antagonize, but rather, to seek improvement and learning), a highlighting example of society’s general blindness toward gender disparity was seen: in a quick summary, as a reply for how I claimed females needed more spotlight, even if it meant males disappearing, I was told “So to fix the issue, men should no longer be allowed to star in films and that females should take over media.” In defense of him, my phrasing was rather harsh itself, but the idea of the reply is what I desire to scope in on. Rather than claiming males should no longer have the ability to appear in media, simply equaling out the field so that both genders are equally represented, and equitably represented, if the latter phrase is correct, is the goal. Quantity and quality of both genders should remain fair; females and males should possess equal spotlight, and in those spotlight durations, the equitable component should also be applied to ensure that neither gender is seen as inferior since equal time does not necessarily equate to equal, proper depiction.

Tying into why this all matters, and to relate back the review, as mentioned, many female rappers, many with incredible talent, are simply not receiving spotlight due to society concluding as a whole that male rappers are more intriguing. This notion is what deserves to be challenged. Too often, males remain the highlight. As an overall message, branching beyond the delivered message of “male, male, male, male” and diversifying current consumed media should be in mind. For example, rather than solely watching and caring of male sports, placing effort to follow female sports is vital. For those equally ignorant of sports as me but are in favor of music, having a mixture of female and male artists is necessary. Regardless of the activity, media related or not, that willingness to accept difference and to acknowledge difference is incredibly crucial and, overall, an effective way to dismantle a male centered society to one that welcomes any gender, and ultimately, person. After all, feeding into solely male dominated artists, movies, and such, simply  perpetuate the current trend of an androcentric society, and thus, drifting away from such will be a form of challenging it.

Now before truly discussing the song of “My Type,” I do apologize if I remained highly incoherent with my points, which were of many. Though the delivery of the ideas may be horrendous in credit to my writing, I nevertheless hope readers take a few moments to develop a personal opinion and stance regarding the ideas. But as promised, it is truly time to focus on the K-Hip Hop song of “My Type.” 3 artists are involved for the track: Jessi, from the 3-membered group of Lucky J, Cheetah, a vicious animal with rapping, and Kangnam, a member from M.I.B. Both Jessi and Cheetah are participants of “Unpretty Rapstars.” Although my review structure, as discussed in my previous review of BESTie’s “I Need You,” is calibrated for solely K-Pop songs, I will experiment with K-Hip Hop. From mentally processing it, I expect it to work well, but I will leave a disclaimer of how it may not smoothly work out. Despite the risks, however, “My Type” is a solid song that showcases rapping and singing of a high standard, and for many readers, a new genre on the blog is welcoming.

With that said, while “My Type” is Jessi, an incredible singer and rapper with an amazing voice and attitude may be one of the rappers from the rap show, readers will always remain “My Type” for who I truly and dearly love the most.  

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Song Score: 7/10 (7.2/10 raw score) – “Above average”

– Vocals: 8/10 – Beginning with the rappers, both Cheetah and Jessi deliver infatuating vocals. Though their vocals are in the form of rapping, many appealing aspects still hold: a flowing, diverse melody, and most promisingly, both power and pacing constantly fluctuating, arguably due to the benefit of rapping form. In focus of the power and pacing, Cheetah and Jessi’s rap presented welcoming variation; every rap section possesses its own scale of power or pacing, and even inside a single rap section itself, both aspects remain diverse and commonly altering. With Cheetah and Jessi continually modifying miniscule factors, be it their rate of rapping or exerted strength per line, their vocals retain high appeal throughout the song. Transitioning to Kangnam, although his form of vocals is standard singing, like the rappers, his vocals still remain admirable. Homogenous to the ladies, Kangnam’s singing remains highly alluring in regard to melody as various notes are used. Furthermore, although his pacing and power remain relatively unchanging, with the style of the song, the instrumental, and even the vocals from Jessi and Cheetah, lacking in those categories is miniscule as other factors compensate. Therefore, with Kangnam prioritizing his tune, for “My Type” as a whole, multiple layers to enticing vocals are covered.

An 8 will be the rating. Solid vocals exist individually, but for what matters the most, in unison, the vocals are impressive.    

– Sections: 7/10 (7/10 raw score)

Introduction, Chorus (Half), Rap, Chorus, Rap, Chorus, Rap, Conclusion (Half Chorus)

1. Introduction: 7/10 – Though a more accurate breakdown of the song would be to label each rap section separately, for the purpose of consistency between reviews, I will unfortunately have to mesh the raps as one overarching section. That said, this does reiterate and prove how my review structure mainly suits K-Pop. In terms of the introduction for”My Type,” Jessi handles it.

Structurally, though quite short, the introduction accomplishes its purpose effectively and efficiently. Firstly, glancing at the instrumental, with the main, heaviest bass and the twinkling, lightest sound being the sole two components used, many benefits are gleaned: the tone and style is set, a point of easy transition and progression exists, and ultimately, a grasping effect as the soundtrack is appealing enough yet not overly revealing. Additionally, addressing the section’s structure on the vocals level, the typical K-Hip Hop style appears: Jessi offering statements versus rapping or singing. Though the mechanical aspect will be addressed, structurally, identical to the instrumental, preserving true singing or rapping further amplifies the introduction’s grasping aspect; genuine singing/rapping has yet to occur, and thus, luring in listeners becomes an outcome, a desired one as the main purpose of a song’s introduction is such.

On the mechanical side of the section, despite being moreover conserved, the section still proves to be sonically pleasing. The soundtrack showcases a catchy, soothing bass line along with a lighter sound, and though both are individually respectable, the real beauty resides with their contrast; the deeper, heavier bass sharpens the lighter sound, and expectedly, the opposite holds true with the lighter sound emphasizing the warmer, vibrating bass. In terms of the vocals, with being simple statements, they do slightly falter. Nevertheless, her voice remains energetic to promote some appeal.

Above average will be the rating for the introduction. The structure remains exceptionally impressive as preservation of both vocals and instrumental create anticipation, but sonically, the introduction does slightly languish due to the vocals being regular speech.

2. Chorus: 6/10 – Kangnam is responsible for all the choruses.

Diving into the stronger aspects of the choruses, from a sonic perspective, the choruses are solid. Kangnam’s singing individually remains captivating due to its melody, but once accounting for the instrumental, the choruses as a whole become even more pleasing. The rhythm that emanates from the instrumental is reflected in the vocals as Kangnam’s pacing follows a similar pattern. Furthermore, though little deviation occurs in terms of Kangnam’s singing, due to following the smooth, rhymatic trend of “My Type,” despite the lack of variety, his vocals hold well as complementing the instrumental’s flow augments the overall singing.

For the structure, with somewhat linear singing and a rather lengthy duration for a chorus, dullness would seemingly be an issue. However, as a slight remedy, certain details are added as attempts to prevent that. A prime example would be the addition of background vocals; throughout the choruses, the voices of Jessi and even Kangnam are heard in order to create some layering, and thus, some variety for the somewhat undeviating structure. Overall, unfortunately, the structure does remain highly stagnant. Though the lengthier duration may be the most prominent factor to blame, with “My Type” being K-Hip Hop, a rhymatic, consistent flow is the standard style, and with that mindset, the structure does perfectly suit.

Slightly above average, due to consistency of reviews, will have to be the score. But, bearing in mind “My Type” is a K-Hip Hop song, the structure is excellent as it remains constant, and as a result, effective for allowing the song to deliver its rhythmic flow.

3. Rap: 8/10 – Both Cheetah and Jessi rap, and rather than gauging them individually, I will combine both of their rapping for reviewing.

After watching multiple performances from these artists, their excellence in “My Type” is of no surprise. Also, for those curious and, hopefully, without spoiling anything for those who have yet to find out, one of these ladies did win the show. Focusing on the song, mechanically, the rap sections are phenomenal. The raps remain, unlike the choruses, diverse with multiple aspects. For one, the pacing shifts around from slower to average for both Jessi and Cheetah. Different portions of their raps change in pacing, and through that, high appeal is kept as the flow continually transforms. Additionally, the rappers’ melody are equally delightful. The tune of their raps reflect the rhythm of the instrumental, and furthermore, the power placed in fluctuates when emphasis is necessary, such as with Cheetah’s parts.

Switching to the raps’ structure, being a rap, the sections remain privileged with automatically being impressive and fresh; with rapping following beats and rhythm moreover than tune, flexibility is gained and thus, every section has the potential to not be akin to a previous rap. In “My Type,” that holds true. An example: Jessi’s rapping significantly differed from Cheetah’s; Jessi’s rap followed a slower, lower noted style than Cheetah’s which was prioritizing pacing and the fluctuation of such. Nevertheless, each rapping sections remain different from the rest, and on the individual level of every rap itself, practically every group of lines hold their own unique traits.

An 8 will be given. Solid rapping exists in “My Type,” as expected considering the talent of the rappers.  

4. Conclusion (Half Chorus): 7/10 – With half of a chorus finishing out the song, Kangnam is in charge.

Mechanically, the same points as mentioned earlier translate over. Therefore, rather than extensively focusing on the sonic component, peering at the structural piece will be what occurs. With that, the conclusion for “My Type” is highly suiting. Firstly, cutting the chorus and utilizing the second half is highly beneficial; the full chorus would have been too lengthy and counteractive to concluding as it would be elongating. Secondly, using the chorus versus a rap as the closing section is vastly more suiting. With the rap sections, spikes and fluctuation occurs commonly, and though that is enticing, it does not grant the same concluding effect as the chorus does; the chorus follows a linear, calmer path, and as such, it naturally holds as a desirable end. Furthermore, with the final lines involving “My Type” as lines, a final, lasting impression is left.

Above average will hold as the score. Mechanically, the final chorus is decent, and structurally, highly respectable.

– Line Distribution: 7/10 – With solely 3 members involved, a free 10 might be given.

Jessi’s part involved the introduction and two rap sections. 3 sections will be her total quantity, and considering her spotlight is sufficient, no issues should exist.

Cheetah follows a similar amount, but unlike Jessi, she lacks the introduction. 2 sections is her count, and while that is seemingly low, accounting for the length of her raps, adequate time is granted.

Lastly, for Kangnam, concerns do exist. In terms of the number of sections, 4 sections is the total as there were 4 choruses. Furthermore, with the full choruses being rather long, excessive time does become apparent.

With Kangnam slightly possessing additional time than the rest, a 10 will not be earned. If the choruses were reduced down to the half versions, this issue would be miniscule. Above average will be the score due to the disparities that exist. The distribution is not entirely bad, but the current issues could certainly be alleviated.  

– Instrumental: 7/10 – As noted throughout the Sections section, the instrumental possesses a significant role for “My Type.” The flow and rhythm of the song derives from the instrumental, and the vocals rely upon it. The singing that occurs follows the flow given by the instrumental, for example, and the rapping follows suit with pacings and even emphasis matching accordingly to the instrumental. Mechanically, the soundtrack on its own proves to be decent. The bass line and beats are catchy and soothing, and once complemented with the vocals, even more so. The instrumental, overall, serves as a foundation for both the structure and sonic components; the overarching tone and tune of “My Type” stems from the instrumental.

Above average will be the score as the instrumental is both solid on its own and vital for the features it provides for the song.

– Meaning: 7/10 – “My Type” instills thoughts of a flirtatious story; after all, it seems to be that a lover has found “[their] type.” To compare current assumptions to what is depicted, these Korean-to-English translated lyrics will, hopefully, provide a check. As always, the lyrics are not 100% accurate:

Unpretty Rapstars
Let me ask you all a question
What’s yo’ type baby, come on

I like it when you’re specific, tell me everything
You can be mean, it’s alright, it’s alright girl
The speed when we’re walking together,
clothes that you don’t want me to wear
Tell me without leaving anything out, girl every little thing
I’m confident enough

What I need, man? A big balle’
Boss man? Dude is shot calle’
I need a smooth ride, a stallion
My blood is rushing
The temperature has risen
Obedience, come here and kiss me
My neck and my legs,
softly touch me
I’m the queen
Treat me well tonight
Put it on my dry back, baby lotion

I like it when you’re specific, tell me everything
You can be mean, it’s alright, it’s alright girl
The speed when we’re walking together,
clothes that you don’t want me to wear
Tell me without leaving anything out, girl every little thing
I’m confident enough
‘cause I’m your type
I’m different from other guys
I know what you want
more than anyone else you know
Even your smallest preferences, so give me a chance
Give me a chance right now
You are my type,
my type, my type, my type
And I’ll be your type

My ideal type is someone with more sex appeal than me
Even if I don’t say it, a guy who shows me through actions
Rather than the bas****s who are all about talk,
like a bas**** who pulls my hair so I can’t even look at other guys
You wanna check it?
I’ll raise my white flag to a guy like that
My hobby is stealing boys who don’t even know this is about them,
who are next to strict girls

I like it when you’re specific, tell me everything
You can be mean, it’s alright, it’s alright girl
The speed when we’re walking together,
clothes that you don’t want me to wear
Tell me without leaving anything out, girl every little thing
I’m confident enough
‘cause I’m your type
I’m different from other guys
I know what you want,
more than anyone else you know
Even your smallest preferences, so give me a chance
Give me a chance right now
You are my type,
my type, my type, my type
And I’ll be your type

Even without NASA/nails, with his own power, regardless of day or night,
someone to take me to space
I’m not talking about nails that you tighten or loosen, that’s what I do
Don’t worry
Now put your guns up no more frontin’
Show me baby let me see what you packin’
Body language, body body language,
call my body, get rid of the other b****

‘Cause I’m your type
I’m different from other guys
I know what you want,
more than anyone else you know
Even your smallest preferences, so give me a chance
Give me a chance right now
You are my type,
my type, my type, my type
And I’ll be your type

Correctly predicted, a romantic story is unveiled. A man and a lady are interested in one another, but also, perhaps not interested in one another. Offering my interpretation of the story, a man and a lady are, assumingly, flirting with one another. The man claims he is “confident enough” to receive feedback from her and likes “it when [the love-interest] is specific.” In fact, he is willing to even tolerate her being “mean” as “it’s alright.” As for why he is willing to have the love-interest make remarks on “the speed” of them “walking together” or even his “clothes that” the love-interest loathes, it is due to desiring her to “give [him] a chance” as she is his “type.” Swapping to the lady’s point of view, she offers her type: a “shot calle.’ “ She desires a boy who will be worthy like a “smooth ride,” and though she desires someone who has the confidence and such to be a “shot caller,” “obedience” to her is necessary as she is “the queen.” Additionally, other details are expressed in regard to her “ideal type,” such as it being “someone with more sex appeal than [her]” and a boy who shows “through actions” than words.

Though the concept of the lyrics is not necessarily intriguing, the amount of details implemented compensates. Above average will be the score. The overall story still simply reflects a standard flirtatious one, but with multiple details stemming from predominantly the first two raps and first half of the choruses, it becomes engrossing.

– “Critical Corner”: While the lyrics may be highly romantic, places worthy of critically deconstructing still exist. From memory, as discussed in multiple reviews (I have lost track of specific ones), the choice of entirely personally changing to accommodate someone is not wise. In “My Type” ‘s story, the male may be sweet, but simultaneously, is overly investing himself into his love-interest, which, in the long term, could prove to be destructive for their relationship. Simply put, it is better for someone to be hated on the premise of who they are than to be loved on the premise of who they are not. Therefore, in this song’s situation, the man, while he should be willing to adjust for his love-interest, should not overly change his entire being in order to suit her preferences.

For another subject, and one that would be highly absorbing, with the song’s related idea of flirting, gender roles has come across my mind. More in-depth discussion will take place in my next review, and once published, many will understand why such a discussion would exist, but as for now, to digress upon this topic and to relate it to flirtatious topics, gender roles should not dictate how flirtatious or dating scenarios are conducted. For a very simplistic example, the concept of who should initiate first, whether it is for proposing or paying, should not come down to gender. Though I am yearning to discuss more deeply, to leave an overarching idea, the issue with gender roles is they are not natural.

Now, a reader may bring up the “alpha male” argument, but I will offer my rebuttal of how humans are the least natural creatures ever. Furthermore, by utilizing the “alpha male” argument, it is belittling humanity to exactly such: creatures; the “males naturally take lead in the wild” idea places an assumption that humans are not yet past surviving, natural instincts when we certainly are. After all, for those who are reading this, I will reassure readers that no animal in the wild reads off a technological screen. The idea of “natural” is simply utilized to reinforce current, unfair beliefs in society, be it preventing females from obtaining a high position, perpetuating emphasis on physical beauty (a discussion on physical beauty and “naturalness” would be fascinating; I will save this for another time if I recall to), and more.

With this explanation proving why gender roles are incredibly unnatural, and instead, created by society, my next point will remain more clear and concise. With gender roles being concepts that humans have been socialized with, it means gender roles must be obtained and strived for. However, blatantly, gender roles are not necessarily friendly and leave people rather prone to feeling dissatisfaction. For example, males that are incapable of paying or initiating first suddenly feel “less of a man,” and for females, those incapable of remaining neat feel “less of a woman.” Now of course it is another topic to discuss in terms of why certain traits or behaviors have been socialized with a certain gender, but sticking to the current point, humans are diverse with behavior and traits. Gender roles are simply funnels for those diverse traits, and quite obviously, there are those who do not fit the established roles or do not desire to fit those established roles. This is where gender roles is harmful; forcing people to accept, and become, what society deems fit does not suit the reality of how every person is unique.

Cutting off the discussion here, as a final message to readers who read this portion of the review, conducting behavior on the sole basis of gender should not occur. Rather than paying for a meal due to being a male, paying due to being kind should be the mindset. And of course, for the female, paying for the meal should not be repulsive due to the idea of gender roles, and thus, being willing to do so due to being friendly should be in mind. Once more, my next review, assuming I follow my current schedule, will, hopefully, cover this topic more deeply.

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Choreography Score: X/10 – Being a rap and an OST, a dance is not expected. As a result, there is no choreography for “My Type.”

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Overall Score: 7/10 (7/10 raw score) – With the Song Score averaging out a 7, “My Type” by the trio of Cheetah, Jessi, and Kangnam finishes with a rating of “above average.” I entirely agree to the rating. The rapping is phenomenal and the singing is equally impressive. The main issue lies with the choruses becoming mundane after multiple playbacks. Nevertheless, “My Type” is a decent K-Hip Hop song.

As always, thank you very much for reading. This review did take only two days miraculously, perhaps in credit to writing for only 4 sections versus the usual 7 or 8. I have been highly slacking with reviews, even with extra free time. Schoolwork is currently where I allocate extra time, though I will do my best to ensure that reviews are improving in terms of their rate. Thank you very much for reading nonetheless, and for being patient.

For upcoming reviews, plenty are in mind but the next one will be one on an artist who went on her first solo: Minah, from Girl’s Day, with “I Am A Woman Too.” Readers may perhaps now understand why my digression above would relate to Minah’s song. After that review, a few male groups are in mind, and before I receive complaints as in the past (refer to my review on Dal Shabet’s “B.B.B”), I will cover them so that the blog remains diverse with groups. Another review that I will certainly cover, however, will be one on T-ARA’s Eunjung upcoming solo. Though no additional details have been disclosed, Eunjung will be returning with a solo which is highly exhilarating as, ignoring how T-ARA is one of my favorite groups and are ladies I incredibly admire, her singing carries a lot of potential for solo songs.

With this being the end, thank you once more for reading. I will attempt to improve my rate once work is cleared. Stay tuned and keep checking back for a review on Minah’s “I Am A Woman Too.” Despite how my writing may be mediocre, “give me a chance right now” since “you are my type” and reader.

BESTie – “I Need You” Review

BESTie – I Need You (Dance Practice)

BESTie – I Need You

Reviewed on March 22, 2015

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Personal Message: As promised, another requested review will be started after my previous one on Fiestar’s “You’re Pitiful” (read it here: Fiestar – “You’re Pitiful” Review). To the person who requested this song, thank you very much for the wait and for sending it in. I feel extremely guilty for the delay, but nevertheless, I hope this read is enjoyable. Truthfully, while I have been busy with schoolwork, I confess, I have been overly consuming media in the form of watching Fiestar’s reality show of “Channel Fiestar.” Though I doubt I will review the show, I have been highly enjoying it. In fact, I have, unintentionally, created a schedule of watching a few parts, if not a whole episode, per night. Additionally, the luxury of being accompanied by a very special friend when watching makes it more enticing; this friend is one I truthfully smother in kisses and hugs: my stuffed penguin. As for why I am mentioning this, I feel the need to brag that, unlike Fiestar’s Linzy, I can properly pronounce/spell penguin. However, since I believe in being honest, “Channel Fiestar” did instill feelings of romance. During one episode, Fiestar participated in a dating game, and with that, I watched it covering my mouth along with slightly blushing I did, in a few ways, wished that I was dating. Of course, I am merely captivated by the romantic setups of the show: Hyemi learning guitar with someone, Linzy composing a song with her younger date, and Cheska (a former member) and Jei being served dinner by a sweet man. Brushing aside silly, future fantasies of how, perhaps one day, I will be proposed to and be able to cook for and to have my hand held as I learn guitar from a future wife/date, my desire with dating is highly irrelevant as of now; rather than worrying about relationships, like Fiestar, I am moreover concerned with improving myself and future plans, such as being a solid English teacher (and if I am truly efficient, I hope to reach the talent of those I admire). Additionally, unlike the amazing ladies, I am still quite young, and thus, highly naive with the idea of love and relationships.

Progressing past embarrassing facts about myself and being arrogant with pronunciation miscellaneous, random information, it is time to focus on BESTie. Though I am personally unfamiliar with the group, I do recognize their name. Currently, BESTie can be regarded as unpopular, but perhaps that will change in the future. Their latest release, “I Need You,” reflects a summertime mood, and before I offer my opinion on the song in a musical sense, I would like to digress to a subject I seldom discuss (and feel free to skip to the review now): the culture of a song, assuming that is the proper label. That said, though I love and highly encourage listeners/readers to glance at songs with a social perspective, peering at a song through a cultural lens is equally interesting, and in certain cases, vital.

Firstly, as promised in my previous review (or a more archaic one; I forget which), I will explain and answer a question that a reader asked: “Why do K-Pop songs have dramatic endings in comparison to A-Pop (American in this case and so forth for this writing) songs?” Though not worded exactly, the premise of the question should hold. To answer this question, and in a broader sense, to explain why K-Pop songs tend to follow their unique style in comparison to, for example as the reader mentioned, A-Pop, it has to do with Korean culture in music. Without diving into complexity and high details (though for those curious, I encourage personal research), traditional Korean songs tend to be ballads, or a form that derives from it, such as trot. Nevertheless, ballad, overall, can be considered as the general form of traditional Korean music (and disclaimer, if anyone highly disagrees and has their own research, please send me a message; I will edit this writing with more accurate facts).

Now, knowing ballad is the foundation of Korean music, the style that emanates from it tends to drift into different genres, whether that is K-Pop, Korean Hip Hop, and more. Of course, a keen reader may ask why ballads follow the current form they possess, and to be honest, that I have yet to uncover. Regardless, with the current adequate background, the question can now be enlightened: K-Pop songs tend to have “dramatic endings,” such as note holds or two-part singing, in comparison to A-Pop, due to the origin of traditional Korean music. Ballad is a genre where vocals are highly prioritized, serving as a foundation, and the main focus; thus, more vocally-intensive singing is heard in ballads. As a result, even with Korean Pop, due to deriving from a ballad origin, the vocal priority that exists in ballad translates over. In the overarching picture, it explains why K-Pop contains traces of ballad: note holds for a climactic moments, for example, and additionally, in general, the singing following a similar style to ballad. Juxtaposing A-Pop, as the reader has noted, A-Pop lacks this “dramatic ending” to songs since most A-Pop songs do not stem from ballad (though admittedly it has been nearly 3 years since I have actively listened to A-Pop; I have very little to no knowledge on current A-Pop songs).

On this note, this is also why I avoid reviewing American Pop songs as, in truth, my current review structure and mental rubric is solely calibrated for K-Pop; I would hold many American Pop songs to a very harsh, unfair standard. To clarify with an example, many A-Pop songs, with the exception of a few artists who I do consider highly, would score an average of 3 for the Vocals grade. As seemingly implied, it appears that I am claiming many American Pop artists have appalling vocals, but that is due to my current cultural standpoint, from a sonic perspective specifically. It would be, in a sense, culturally ignorant of me to bash another culture’s music on the premise of my personal music. K-Pop songs’ vocals tend to be more allocated towards due to its cultural background, as explained earlier. In opposite, A-Pop does not function this way; from what I have perceived (once more, it has been an exceptionally long time since I last actively heard A-Pop), the foundation for A-Pop songs tends to be electronical music or similar to such. Therefore, rather than the vocals leaching spotlight, it is often time the instrumental doing so, and in opposite to ballad, the vocals adapt to the instrumental. As a result, the singing is seemingly to a lower standard.

However, realistically, rather than claiming A-Pop songs have inept singers, it would be significantly more acknowledgable to understand the differences of musical culture; it is essential to realize that the vocals are not at a seemingly lower tier on the sole basis of skills, but instead, due to the cultural background that emphasizes a catchier, dance club instrumental versus more prominent vocals, such as the singing heard in ballad. Of course, this applies to anything, even outside of music. Peering at another culture, be it life style or music, and contrasting it with a personal culture (a certain term exists for this action, I sadly cannot confidently recall it) is highly naive and misguiding. Final point being, in terms of music, a culture’s music deserves respect as it is highly important and an identity. Criticizing a foreign culture’s songs on the sole basis of a personal, limited perspective is incredibly atrocious; after all, music may be an efficient, effective bridge to being exposed and emerged to a culture.

Truly being on topic with BESTie, the ladies of Hyeyeon, Uji, Dahye, and Haeryeong released “I Need You” during September 2014. Though it is agreeable that a summer mood is attached, in terms of accepting it as a stellar song, there is indeed some hesitation. While “I Need You,” the reader, I unfortunately cannot reiterate the same phrase to the song.

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Song Score: 6/10 (6.4/10 raw score) – “Slightly above average”

– Vocals: 6/10 – As seen in a few other reviews, although the skills are apparent, execution of said skills falter. Firstly, in terms of the positive, the vocals do remain diverse; “I Need You” showcases different singing paces, high and lower pitches, and a range of power. Though a multitude of aspects are reached, solely achieving variety does not constitute outstanding vocals. For specific moments of inadequate singing, somewhat paradoxically phrased, the powerful singing sections are weak. The potent singing may be impressive from a mechanical standpoint, but the utilized style at the chorus, a prime example, is overly conducted; excessive power compromises a crucial aspect of “I Need You”: melody. On this tune, in addition to the immoderate strain and force that construe the melody, even with other sections prioritizing it, the verses and pre-choruses for a few examples, the tune remains partially bleak.

Nevertheless, slightly above average will hold. The vocals are variated, and even with excessive power and plain melodies at certain times, the vocals still sufficiently hold. Simply summarized, potential exists, execution, however, does not.  

– Sections: 6/10 (5.5/10 raw score)

Introduction (Verse), Verse, Pre-Chorus, Chorus, Verse, Pre-Chorus, Chorus, Bridge, Conclusion (Bridge)

1. Introduction (Verse): 6/10 – Uji handles the first half of the introduction and Hyeyeon simultaneously sings with the remaining portion. Also, perhaps the first time in a review, the introduction of “I Need You” utilizes the verse.

Focusing on the mechanical aspect, Uji’s initial lines are soothing; a lower tone and calmer pacing grant the song a highly welcoming introduction from a sonic perspective. Unfortunately, for what does languish, once Hyeyeon contributes her vocals, the melodic, slow rhythm suffers; while it is not directly her singing at fault, meshing both the members’ vocals causes the crisp, clean melody that was in place to cease as a newly unified voice takes over.

In terms of the structural side, the verses’ format prove to be effective for an introduction. Gradual progression remains as the introduction’s strongest point. Uji’s lines open “I Need You,” but for what prominently and potently transitions the song, the simultaneous singing deserves credit as it allows a natural hastening of the beats. Furthermore, the instrumental complements the efforts; the periodical strums of a guitar (assuming I am accurate) and blatant transformation at the end aid in progressing the song along naturally and fluently.

While the structural component holds well, the mechanical aspect does remain a drawback. Slightly above average will hold be the rating. If the simultaneous singing continued the previous established trend of transparent, smooth vocals, a higher score would be possible.

2. Verse: 5/10 – Dahye is responsible for the two verses in the song.

Though Dahye’s voice itself remains highly captivating, the singing lacks a phenomenal amount of depth. Mechanically, Dahye’s deeper voice offers a delightful, soothing aspect, but ignoring the pacifying effect, nothing else holds. Overall, her singing is relatively dull: the melody, pacing, and power categories of her singing remain stagnant. At most, a lower note spectrum becomes heard due to her voice, but a sole pitch range does not compensate for the linear singing presented.

In terms of verses’ structure, the standard role of being a bridge between the prior section and the upcoming pre-chorus is fulfilled; though mechanically weak, Dahye’s lines work in favor of giving a natural and steady progression for “I Need You” as a whole. With a slower pace and deeper notes, even if both remain unmodified, a foundation exists from which progression can properly occur. For example, the upcoming pre-chorus becomes transitioned to fluently due to it remaining an opposite to the verse: fluctuation with both notes and pace occur. This contrast, and thus, proper transition, derives from the verses’ structural setup of being linear and slower paced, lower pitches. In terms of the verses’ structure on the individual level, unfortunately, akin to its overall concept, it remains linear. Though the first and second verse do differ with their formats, the structures of both hold as plain and not necessarily beneficial or impairing to the section as a whole.

Overall, average will be the score for the verses. As a section in the entirety of “I Need You,” a vital role is satisfied. Scoping into the verses at solely the section itself, however, it does falter; the mechanical and structural aspects fail to be enticing.      

3. Pre-Chorus: 6/10 – Haeryeong handles both pre-choruses on her own, though background vocals do accompany her.

As mentioned earlier, the pre-choruses hold an interesting position as they can be regarded as an utter opposite to the verses. This applies to practically every aspect. Firstly, unlike Dahye’s voice, Haeryeong’s vocals emanate a fragile, softer tone. Though the sound itself is not problematic, it affects a few aspects of her singing, though most prominently, power. With gentle vocals, traces of power are dampened, and sadly, not being able to yield sufficient power causes a semi dull flow, and additionally, a negative effect on the structural perspective. However, before swapping over to the section’s structure, in terms of other mechanical aspects such as melody and pace, those two categories are successful. The vocals’ melody and pacing waver with a prime example being the second half. After the first half of a pre-chorus, higher notes are heard along with different paces, which, in result, allow the pre-choruses to possess a pleasing flow and sound.

Now for the structural piece, as briefly mentioned, the lack of power delivers a hassle. With the pre-choruses becoming relatively amplified in juxtaposition to previous sections, the vocals would expectly follow suit. Though the tune and pacing become more energetic, the vocals themselves remain overly fragile, and thus, the same trend is not equally applied, and in turn, causes the section as a whole to feel unbalanced; the instrumental and other aspects, be it melody and pacing, are seemingly energetic, but the force of the vocals in comparison remain underwhelming. Disregarding that aspect of the structure, for what is positive, the variation is admirable. The first half delivers standard singing, but the remaining half offers an interesting take: background vocals. Background vocals are used to not only deliver diversity, but also a clear, efficient transition.

Overall, slightly above average will be the rating. The mechanical aspect and structural aspect  still hold decently, even if the power of vocals is slightly lacking.   

4. Chorus: 6/10 – Hyeyeon and Uji team up for the choruses.

If certain traits of every section were evenly distributed, many issues would be redressed. In the choruses’ case, the main issue lies with excessive power; for the sonic and structure components, the amount of force exerted from the vocals cripple both pieces. Mechanically, even if incredibly impressive, the power nullifies the pacing and melody. With a sizeable amount of strain being used, the powerful notes become stretched. As a result, the pacing follows a linear, unchanging path and, homogenous to such, the melody remains restricted to the executed note stretch. Factoring in the lines that are not the powerful note stretches, the same style is kept, the difference, however, is the degree of power is lessened. Nevertheless, for an overarching outcome, the powerful vocals cause the choruses to remain highly stale as the excessive force creates unmalleable corners for variety.

Structurally, the most impeding aspect gleaned from the powerful vocals is how inflexibility dominates the sections; like the sonic aspect, the layout of the section remains unchanged as the powerful vocals set a route to be followed, and drifting away from such would be overly contrasting. Many, if not all, the lines follow the same route of showing off strong vocals. Although the scale of power may fluctuate, the same, identical structure is in place, and thus, the section as a whole loses much charm due to a lack of multiple, appealing aspects.

Slightly above average will be the score. Skillfully impressive but sonically and structurally lacking would be a summarizing phrase for the choruses.

5. Bridge: 5/10 – Every member contributes one line for the initial moment, but afterwards, every member simultaneously sings.

Vastly, and unfortunately, similar to the choruses, the same issues translate over, and in some cases, even new issues arise. In terms of the bridge’s sound, repetition occurs, but unlike in songs where that is properly used and therefore effective, “I Need You” improperly manipulates it. Initially, the bridge follows a pause in which everything pacifies. However, the line used at this moment is recycled by every member. Due to the sluggish statement-style conducted, a musical aspect is not garnered. Afterwards, when standard singing resumes, the issue of excessive power revives, though to a lesser scale; powerful vocals once more dominate the song and restrict any potential of tunes that deviate away from what the vocals establish.

For what is beneficial of the bridge, in the structural sense, a climactic moment exists due to the section. Even if the mechanical aspect is slightly tainted, the concept of the bridge continuing the choruses’ style versus, for example, a lengthy note hold, is more suitable for the song. Ignoring the overall layout, however, the section from an individual point of view does suffer. Repetition of the same lines remain mundane, and sonically, the downfall of such is witnessed.

Average will be the score. Mechanically, it simply is not appealing; the vocals’ talent may be admirable, but due to a lack of variety, it remains incredibly tedious. Likewise, for the structure, though the song’s climactic moment is preferable to other forms, it still remains plain.

6. Conclusion (Bridge): 5/10 – Since the bridge is reused for the conclusion, every member is involved.

For the conclusion, interestingly, the bridge is used. Sadly, with the recycled section being weaker, it will negatively affect the conclusion. Sonically, the same issues present in the bridge simply carry over; overly potent vocals constrict the section from variety, and the monotonous lines hinder any change in sound.

In terms of the structure, independently, the same, undesirable repetition remains. Focusing on the more pressing aspect of being a conclusion, utilizing the bridge once more for the end is harming. With the bridge following a highly energetic state, lowering it to a point of calmness would need to exist or else the risk of abruptly ending remains high. In “I Need You” ‘s case, the latter occurs: the song abruptly ends. While agreeable that the very last seconds of the song does indeed fade away, the period prior to such is incredibly energetic and possessing the vocals at their high caliber of strength. Cutting off the song, even if done with fading, at the few remaining seconds does not grant a proper closure; allowing the conclusion section to reach a point where it can naturally, seamlessly fade out is the more proper end to a song. In this song’s case, the vocals’ final impressions of being in full capacity lingers around versus being at a calm, resting point. As a result, this will mark the conclusion as abrupt, and thus, structurally for the song as a whole, it fails to meet the standard criteria.  

Average will be the score. At most, the song’s key point of impactful vocals is left as the final impression, but the expense of such rests with an improper and abrupt ending.

– Line Distribution: 9/10 – With solely 4 members in BESTie, the Line Distribution score should automatically receive a high score. Emphasis: should.

Firstly, for Hyeyeon, her lines consisted of partial moments at the introduction and the first half of the choruses. In total, 3 sections is her count. Depending on the following members, this may or may not be an issue.

Glancing at Uji, her spotlight includes the introduction and the two choruses. Exactly identical to Hyeyeon, she also possesses 3 sections. With already half of BESTie having the same quantity of sections, both being the main vocalists as well (gauging from the song), an equal distribution is expected for the rest.

Swapping to Dahye, solely the two verses in the song belong to her. With being 1 short from the previous members, this is not necessarily an issue, though it does prevent a chance of achieving an utter perfect 10. Nevertheless, no major issues are apparent.

Lastly, for Haeryeong, similar to Dahye, she is responsible for two sections, both being the pre-chorus. Trouble is nonexistent.

Before accounting for the final score, the bridge and conclusion does include every member, and thus, more equal spread of lines is seen. Overall, a 9 will hold. Every member was responsible for a section: Dahye with the verses, Haeryeong with the pre-choruses, and both Uji and Hyeyeong with the choruses. Additionally, the bridge remains evenly shared. If the introduction was perhaps shared with every member, then an utterly flawless score would have been earned. Nonetheless, a very impressive distribution is seen.  

– Instrumental: 6/10 – The instrumental for “I Need You” does hold decently in both categories of mechanical and structural. Peering from a sonic lens, the instrumental consists of light, rhythmic beats, and additionally, even a trumpet and guitar. Most promising from the soundtrack, however, is its beats; the upbeat and energetic beats disclosed from the soundtrack remains simplistic yet appealing. Nevertheless, even with decent instruments and sounds, it lacks aspects that renders it as utterly infatuating. In terms of the structural perspective, the instrumental greatly aids the vocals. For one, the soundtrack completely and accurately syncs to the vocals’ intensity; every section was met with proper calibration, such as additional instruments/sounds to augment the choruses’ upbeatness, or reducing complexity and layers to bestow a calmer presence for the verses.

While the structural portion heavily thrives, the mechanical aspect, while catchy and delightful, is not intriguing enough to push it towards a higher score. Slightly above average will hold, but regardless, the instrumental is respectable.

– Meaning: 5/10 – With a song title of “I Need You,” a flirtatious story is anticipated. Considering the cheerful atmosphere of the song, perhaps a lover will express their love towards a love-interest. To discover the truth, these Korean-to-English translated lyrics will provide such; though not 100% accurate, the depicted story should become unveiled:

Just hearing the sound of the rain reminds me of you
I miss you more than yesterday
I need you, oh need you
I need you, oh need you

When I buy pretty lingerie, when I have a scary dream
When I’m cooking alone, when I get into a car accident
I need you, oh need you
I need you, oh need you

You were always by my side without a word
I didn’t know I would be the only one hurting
(You’re really) All I need
(You’re really) All I need, all I need is you

I need you, I need you
I don’t want anyone else
I don’t want to forget like the wind
I need you, I need you
I get nervous without you by my side for a single moment
You’re everything I need

We didn’t know that keeping love simple was the best
We kept measuring things out
Pulling out our hair, fighting and getting deep scars,
burning the only photo that remains in my heart

You were always by my side without a word
I didn’t know I would be the only one hurting
(You’re really) All I need
(You’re really) All I need, all I need is you

I need you, I need you
I don’t want anyone else
I don’t want to forget like the wind
I need you, I need you
I get nervous without you by my side for a single moment
You’re everything I need

I need you, I need you
I need you, I need you
Bad at feelings and love
Endless jealousy
I want you back, want you back
want you back now
I want you back, want you back
want you back now

Bad at feelings and love
Endless jealousy
I want you back, want you back
want you back now
I want you back, want you back
want you back now

Contrary to the cheerier tone that is showcased, “I Need You” displays not a flirtatious story, but rather, a melancholy one; a lady (though as always, in a general sense, lyrics are gender-neutral) has separated from her love-interest and sorely misses them. And for hopefully a jocular story, I will share how I came to the conclusion that the lover is a female: lingerie. As I always believe in being true, I will confess, I had absolutely no idea on what lingerie was. With the lyrics describing it as “pretty,” I inferred it being related to clothing, and humorously, I was not too off. Of course, to be certain, I had to ask a friend, and, as a few might forecast, comedy ensued. My question of “Do you buy lingerie, if so, what is it, I bet it is pretty and you should show me yours if you have any” received life threats, shock and awkwardness, but ultimately, the answer of female’s underwear and laughter. On the positive side, I heeded my friend’s advice of needing to leave my rock become vastly more aware of different clothing apparel.

Story and feelings of self disgust and embarrassment aside, and in hopes of not permanently scarring our friendship, “I Need You” reveals a lady who, as the title, “[needs] [her love-interest]” in her life. Whether she has a “scary dream” or is “cooking alone,” she yearns for her former love-interest to be there. She desires “[no one] else” and feels a sense of “[nervousness] without [the love-interest] by [her] side,” even if for a “single moment.” Answering why the couple parted ways, not “keeping love simple” led to their fallout; “[they]” kept measuring things out,” and thus, got into multiple arguments which, in the overall timeline, caused them to surely separate.

Average will be the score for the lyrics. Mainly gaping issues are apparent: the lack of details, repeated details, and a standard story. A vast portion of the lyrics are primarily aimed towards the idea of the main character needing their former partner back. In fact, solely the second verse deviates away from that idea; nearly every section in “I Need You” solely reiterates the idea of needing the love-interest. With the song in essence delivering the same message, the story becomes highly uninteresting and plain. If more details existed and were not mere repeats of the same, regurgitated idea, then a much higher score would be earned.

– “Critical Corner”: Though previously discussed in my last review of Fiestar’s “You’re Pitiful,” the topic of overly investing a life into another person appears once more. Since I am feeling relatively fatigued due to catching a cold partially lazy, I will simply redirect readers to read that review’s section of the “Critical Corner.” The same idea should shift over, though in summary, while it is understandable on the emotional trauma that exists after a relationship is broken, moving on is a vital, growing experience, and in many ways, essential. In this song’s case, the main character unfortunately has yet to reach that stage, but, after time passing, will hopefully do so and progress on with their life.

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Choreography Score: 4/10 – The choreography for “I Need You” is surprising. Negatively. This may be perhaps the lowest score I have given so far for a choreography, but remaining unbiased and truthful to my words is my priority. On topic, the breakdown of both the dance’s key points and syncing disclose lower ratings in regard to both. In terms of syncing, it remains a split issue; maneuvers that are linked to the song’s beat are properly matched, but for the portions of the song that are moreover focused towards the flow than beats, such as the chorus, the choreography, peculiarly, continues to sync to the beat despite how the flow, the main spotlight, should be what is synced to. In that sense, though the syncing is accurate, it is unsuitable at times and thus, overall, not necessarily syncing properly.

As for the key points, considering the vocals’ style and the general aura of the song, energetic and organized dancing was foreseen. In this song’s case, the sheer opposite occurred: lifeless, plain and towards the end, chaotic dancing exists. While other sections remain adequately appealing, the choruses hold as appalling; the light tapping, while on point with the beat, is incredibly insipid. Furthermore, with, ironically, the most boring, lackluster key point occurring at the most eventful portion of the song, the created contrast from such lowers the choreography’s rating. Other painful aspects, such as the bridge becoming overly random and complex, and additionally, even the backup dancers proving to be unnecessary and simply escalating the choruses’ weak key point, further decrease the score.

In the end, though it will be a large burden for the Overall Score, a 4 will be given here. Simply phrased, the choreography in “I Need You” is slightly below average. While it is not completely unsynced or possessing distasteful key points, it does still remain mediocre.

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Overall Score: 5/10 (5/10 raw score) – With an average of 5, the Overall Score will hold as such. This indicates an overall rating of average, and unfortunately, I do reside with it. BESTie, while unlucky with the song’s composition, does remain lucky in terms of being able to showcase their vocals’ potential. Every member delivered excellent vocals, even if the setup of the singing is questionable. Perhaps future releases will bring improvement. At the very least, the clothing concept is admirable; the members’ chic fashion reinforce once more on how hideous my fashion, or better phrased, lack thereof, is. Nevertheless, BESTie has singing potential. While “I Need You” did not allow their talent to be genuinely delivered, I will remain optimistic of future comebacks serving their singing skills justice.

As I always, and will always say, thank you very much for reading. To the person who requested this, thank you so much for being patient. I appreciate the request, and I hope you enjoy the review, and additionally, that you disagree with my claims. On a side note, truthfully, I believe my writing here was rather poor; many argument points were unclear and the mechanical writing itself feels rather incoherent. If my belief is true, I do apologize. While I can offer the excuse of becoming ill, I will accept the faults and work harder to improve my reviews.

In terms of upcoming reviews, with spring break arriving, I have extra time to invest towards reviews. I will attempt to achieve 6 reviews for March 2015, and assuming current school work is finished, that will be an easy feat. Two special reviews are in mind: an album review, and for what many readers would enjoy, a song that is not necessarily Korean Pop, but instead, Korean Hip Hop. Though I am unsure if my review outline will process it properly and fairly, I will attempt it, and at the very least, it can be regarded as a bonus review. As for the album review, I am excited as it is a very respectable one.

With this marking the end of the review, once more, thank you very much for reading. I cannot express enough gratitude. Many reviews are in mind, and though I listed the upcoming two reviews, many artists did have comebacks, a few being Girl’s Day’s Minah with her first solo, Boyfriend, and countless others. I will review them as hastily as possible. For now, however, stay tuned for a review on a K-Hip Hop song. It is one that is highly popular and recent, and unfortunately I will not leak further information. Keep checking back, after all,”I need you” and “I want you back.”   

Fiestar – “You’re Pitiful” Review

Fiestar – You’re Pitiful (Dance Practice)

Fiestar – You’re Pitiful (Music Video)

Fiestar – You’re Pitiful

Reviewed on March 15, 2015

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Personal Message: Coincidentally, and in some ways, luckily, a request was sent in to review this song. I planned to review it regardless of extraneous influences, but now a simple win-win situation exists; the requester receives the review and I get to publish a song I originally intended to cover (thank you to the person who sent it in and for the additional kind words, I wholeheartedly appreciate it). Truthfully, however, initially I planned to review another requested song (to the person who sent that in, I apologize; the song will be reviewed promptly after, and thank you for sending it in). Nevertheless, considering how Fiestar is slightly trending, I will publish this review while that occurs. Even if they were not receiving some public spotlight, I still find their recent comeback of “You’re Pitiful” to be highly admirable and worthy of a review. It has been a quite some time since I have last heard an infatuating song, but Fiestar redresses that.

“You’re Pitiful” is extremely impressive, and equally, to see Fiestar improve. The ladies’ previous release on “One More” (which I did review, feel free to read it: Fiestar – “One More” Review) showcased a song that was not necessarily too bad, but, as the review states, it is solely “slightly above average.” However, once accounting for the choreography, “One More” holds its own very well. Focusing specifically on “You’re Pitiful,” while the choreography takes a miniscule dent, the sonic component of the song is a significant improvement over “One More”; the vocals are to a higher tier, the line distribution is seemingly more diverse, the rapping is solid, and much more (as will be covered in the review itself).

Quickly addressing the links, the first is Fiestar’s beloved standard dance practice video, and uniquely, the music video for the second (I will explain later why I included it). In terms of the dance practice video, it is currently labeled as the “White Shirt version,” which makes me wonder if a “Black Dress version” another version will be put out. Nevertheless, from gauging a few live performances, the choreography itself is consistent, even if future releases will bring different clothing. Offering a comment on the choreography, while the dance is not to the caliber of “One More” (the choreography will be graded in the review), it is still decent, but certainly, Fiestar’s skills continue to shine; every member in Fiestar most likely, actually, definitely, has more strength in one leg than I do in my entire being, and of course, the level of dexterity to dance in high heels and, though trepidatiously, on top of chairs adds onto their dancing talent.

Transitioning to why I included the music video (at this point, feel free to skip to the review itself), the previous subject of high heels will provide a bridge for that. Two interesting incidents occurred: a remark made about high heels, and a personal conversation with a friend regarding the music video for “You’re Pitiful.” Following a chronological order, I will address an intriguing event regarding high heels. To instantly clarify, I am in no means attempting to degrade or offend the people I will mention (and I will explain their perspectives which are completely viable), but remaining critical and being able to view a topic from many angles is vital, and that I will bring, hopefully.

Firstly, for the remark on high heels, offering context, a librarian hosted a “ritual”: drown female stereotypes and such. Personally, I am in favor of her holding such a ritual, however, an interesting comment was made. In summary: “And all of those pictures of women needing to wear 4 inches high heels to be beautiful, drown it!” Now, initially, I utterly agreed with that statement, and in truth, I still do in terms of her connotation; the idea of how females are beautiful solely if they wear high heels is one that needs to be challenged (along with other requirements to meet “beautiful”; refer to countless reviews I have written that slightly cover that). While that message is indeed positive, there is a subtle component, intentional or not, that is left: females should not wear high heels at all. Of course, one may argue (and personally I do believe so) that she meant the earlier statement, however, this type of remark is somewhat related to one that is often heard: females should not wear makeup, high heels, dresses, skirts, and anything “feminine” (in two reviews, I will actually address the concept of “masculine” and “feminine”; for a short preview, there is no such thing) in order to challenge and stop sexism.

Unfortunately, those who do hold this stance are, surprisingly, supporting and reinforcing sexism, intentionally or not; sexism, homogenous to other types of oppressions (racism, classism, and more), in modern time is highly invisible, and the mentioned stance is one that reveals how sexism remains highly cloaked. Females should be free of a beauty standard, but ironically, to deny them of their own desire for beauty, such as encouraging females to reject “feminine” items, is indeed setting a new beauty standard for females. If there was truly no beauty standard, then, assuming one comprehends the idea of “no,” there should be absolutely zero remarks made on what a female should or should not wear. Removing current beauty standards in place is utterly necessary, such as the librarian’s point, but equally crucial, ensuring no other standards become set should be in mind, such as preventing the idea of females needing to reject “feminine” items. If my point lacks clarity, I do apologize. Quickly summarizing my argument with an example, a lady should not feel the need to wear high heels to feel beautiful, but a lady should feel free to wear high heels in order to feel beautiful if she desires to.

Now, while on this topic, I will bring in my second point that regards the music video. Similar to the concept mentioned above, this music video follows such except in a different perspective: admittedly blush-inducing awkward to say, sexual attraction. Although my friend and I became utterly hypnotized and captivated by the amazing ladies of Fiestar calmly and thoroughly enjoyed the music video and had a small discussion, our topic shifted to one that is necessary to share: sexualization. Truthfully, this subject is one that I have recently been attempting to deconstruct, and I doubt I will reach a personal consensus, nor will society, assuming it has not already done so. Hastily summarizing our conversation topics, excluding the artwork and plot of the music video, and the members’ exquisite eyelashes causing envy towards their mascara and false lashes the cosmetics and makeup, my friend confessed a sense of unease with the sexual components to the video, which are truthfully somewhat rife. Nevertheless, although this is a subject in which many feel uncomfortable (such as in her case), I highly believe there needs to be a conversation, and I will offer my current butchered, incoherent opinion of the concept of sexualization/objectification.

Specifically with “You’re Pitiful,” I will claim this video is not sexualizing. It is sexual at moments, but not sexualizing. There is a phenomenal difference between the two, though both are akin in terms of being exceptionally lengthy to ruminate about. Tying back my earlier argument, the subtle layers of sexism reappears; ironically, claiming the music video is sexist due to believing it is sexualizing is potentially sexist in itself. Now, depending on whether the video is indeed sexualizing or not will influence answers, but that gauge is highly vague and subjective. To offer my opinion, and clarifying once more, I am not ever correct with what I claim, and thus, I highly encourage readers (if people read this portion) to create their own stance, I believe “You’re Pitiful” is not offensive at all, and at most, it is simply sexual at times (even if often).

Firstly, sexism appears once more in a highly discreet manner: females are restricted from being sexually attractive. Often time, on the sole basis of a music video being sexual (though bear in mind, this is another discussion; should anything ever be sexual in the first place is a point worthy of examining), many will automatically assume the video is sexualizing females, and thus, offensive. However, a female should indeed be able to feel and be sexually attractive. For what is obscured, subjectiveness plays a major role in determining sexualizing and sexually attractive; there is a difference between claiming that Hyemi is an utterly “sexy” lady versus her (the level of embarrassment is incredibly high to say this) body is “sexy.” This is where sexualization becomes utterly vague and complex.

While I perceive Hyemi to be “sexy” as she is incredibly hard working, talented, intelligent, and, to keep a consistent argument, I will include even her physical beauty which I envy, it is not necessarily sexualizing nor negative to perceive such. We have been socialized with the idea that females cannot be sexually attractive or else they will be classified as certain atrocious labels. However, realistically, females should be able to. Therefore, to claim Hyemi is “sexy,” physically and non-physically, is not negative, and relating back the music video, though the physical aspect of her “sexiness” is emphasized, there is no shame in that. That said, however, there is still an issue: often time, “Hyemi” is substituted by “body” or–inserting my personal phrase–goodness-forbid, specific body parts. This subjectiveness is where I personally believe sexualization truly does occur (though the delivery of the sexual matter also influences this). To forget Hyemi as a person, a human, and to solely see her for her body is where sexualization does occur. While it is definite that the music video for “You’re Pitiful” emphasizes the members’ body at times, once more, there is no shame in revealing the ladies’ physical attractiveness. What proves to be an issue is when that physical attractiveness is overly interpreted by viewers, and thus, people begin to not see Fiestar, an incredible group of highly adept idols, but instead, sheer bodies. Adding clarity, and giving an overall point, rather than shaming females and enforcing them to hide their physical attractiveness and body, teaching people, both male and female, to view females as equal human beings should be the approached route, not the current oppressive system where every and any sexual instance in a music video is labeled as sexualizing, and thus, in a subtle manner, pushing forth a message that encourages females to hide and loathe their bodies.  

Of course, I will agree sexualizing is not utterly inaccurate, and unfortunately, there are very blatant instances of such, but remembering to not overly label everything as sexualizing is important. Should “You’re Pitiful” ‘s music video have depicted the ladies as dolls that were used for solely their body and sexual purposes, then I would burn down the music video’s director’s house be highly mature, non-violent, but highly frustrated and angrily challenging the video. But, as explained, even with high emphasis on their body, there is no shame in claiming Fiestar themselves, not their bodies, is sexy, physically and non-physically. With all of this said, and I very much do apologize for becoming excessively talkative of this subject, let us focus to “You’re Pitiful” as a song.

As mentioned, it has been a while since I have heard a song that utterly captivated me, but Fiestar corrects such (Hyorin x Jooyoung – Erase (Review) was probably the latest song I highly, utterly enjoyed). The ladies of Cao Lu, Jei, Linzy, Hyemi, and Yezi return with “You’re Pitiful,” and confessingly, that title perfectly reflects my current mood; I feel pitiful knowing Fiestar is unpopular. On the positive side, I hope, and expect, their popularity to significantly rise due to this incredible, solid song, as this review will reveal.

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Song Score: 7/10 (7.2/10 raw score) – “Above average”

– Vocals: 8/10 – From what I recall, their previous song had a rating of 7 for vocals. With that numerical value translating as “above average,” Fiestar incredibly manages to improve this aspect. “You’re Pitiful” showcases exceptionally astounding vocals on the levels of both individual and collaborative. For the individual members, highlighting the groups’ main vocalists, Hyemi and Linzy continue to impress. Though I humorously nicknamed Linzy as “Pepper Honey Vocals,” in their current comeback, Linzy unequivocally showcases why her original nickname is so; “Honey Vocals” Linzy is highly accurate as her moments in the song remain alluring, variated, and though power is still an added component, her melody is what remains the spotlight as it proves to be incredibly infatuating and sweet, like honey. Focusing on Hyemi, homogenous to Linzy, her vocals follow suit with the exact traits and merits. Now, in terms of other members, their parts still hold a high tier. Cao Lu’s lines, though less in quantity, provide the lower notes of “You’re Pitiful,” Jei offers excellent melody and, in opposite to Cao Lu, emphasis towards the higher notes, and lastly, Yezi contributes her vocals via rapping, and at that, a solid one.

Overall, simply stated, solid vocals exist in “You’re Pitiful.” A plethora of desirable traits occur: power, sweet and soothing melody, high and low pitches, different paces, and, though I confessingly should have addressed earlier, excellent chemistry in terms of Fiestar’s vocals meshing well against every member’s voice.

– Sections: 7/10 (6.86/10 raw score)

Introduction, Verse, Pre-Chorus, Chorus, Rap, Pre-Chorus, Chorus, Bridge, Chorus, Conclusion

1. Introduction: 7/10 – Before beginning, as consistent readers may realize, I have created a new label for this portion of reviews; instead of “Song Structure,” a more efficient and accurate term will be used from here on out: “Sections.” Focusing on the introduction, it is solely the instrumental.

Mechanically and structurally, the introduction excels in both categories. Addressing the structural side, this section satisfies its standard role of an introduction efficiently and effectively. With utilizing a pure soundtrack, the vocals are preserved and thus, the aspect of attracting attention is easily met due to the crafted enticement. Furthermore, with vocals being nonexistent, the song follows an exceptionally natural progression; “You’re Pitiful” begins calmly due to possessing a pure instrumental, but afterwards when vocals appear, a natural transition occurs. Switching to the mechanical aspect, the utilized soundtrack remains charming. Though the beeps may be slightly odd, when meshed along with the guitar, it provides a melodic and catchy tune. Besides being a solid complement to the beep noise, the guitar itself remains equally attractive. Both sounds offer “You’re Pitiful” its melody, and the delivery of the two remains properly paced and suiting to the atmosphere of the song.

Above average will be the score. The mechanical piece does slightly falter, but with the structural side heavily compensating, the introduction as a whole still holds well.    

2. Verse: 6/10 – Jei and Yezi cooperate for this section.

The first and only verse has a delightful approached route, but the execution is not necessarily successful. Focusing on how the section sounds, in comparison to the structure, it slightly falters. Firstly, Jei and Yezi’s singing thoroughly emulates one another, and while that in itself may not necessarily be an issue, due their singing style, the duplicated styles prove to be hindering. Being more specific with the two members’ singing, both ladies conduct lower pitches, and though the tune itself is soothing, little variation and fluctuation exists, and thus, in terms of the mechanical sound, it does create a lifeless, monotone section. Nevertheless, for what the section does achieve, the structural aspect, specifically progression, holds well. The verse’s qualities of being slower paced and calm are beneficial to such; Jei and Yezi disclose lower notes with a somewhat sluggish rate, and ironically, though the singing is a downfall mechanically due to that style, for the section’s structure, it becomes aided via creating a natural flow and transition for the song as a whole. No abrupt transition occurs after the introduction due to how the verse’s structure holds.

Slightly above average is the score. The concept behind the verse is excellent, and in many ways, vital to “You’re Pitiful,” but unfortunately, expending the section’s mechanical potential for its structural component to thrive is not a desired pathway.

3. Pre-Chorus: 7/10 – Jei returns once more. This time, however, Cao Lu joins her. The pair handles every pre-chorus.

Juxtaposing the verse and pre-chorus, a huge improvement appears: the pre-chorus remains charming with both its mechanical and structural components. In terms of the section’s sonic piece, variety proves to be a prominent factor. For one, the melody heavily fluctuates in a unique nature; an echoing aspect is attached to Jei’s line. Even Cao Lu’s line follow suit, though to a lesser degree and remaining moreover basic. Now, for the most promising portion, during the final line, Jei’s singing becomes phenomenal: the higher notes become reached, the melody becomes highly addicting, and power is included. As for the structural side, transitioning to transitions in specific, the pre-choruses follow, as a current recurring trend seems to be, solid progression. The first half of the pre-chorus is a period of the song developing, and with the second half offering very melodic, potent singing, the chorus becomes properly hyped and transitioned to. Ignoring the pre-chorus’ role for “You’re Pitiful” as a whole, on the individual level, contrast is exploited to strengthen the section. Cao Lu’s lines may be somewhat plain mechanically, but her lines help prevent staleness; “Baby I don’t know oh I don’t know,” in comparison to Jei’s echoing lines, grant a foundation of standard singing. As a result, while the echoing style is intriguing, without Cao Lu’s lines, its effectiveness would be dampened.  

Overall, above average will be the rating. Jei’s echoing lines, and most pleasing, her final line, offer the pre-choruses’ mechanical charm. Cao Lu’s added lines, in addition to the section as a whole following excellent progression, create a desired contrast that grant the section’s admirable structural layer.

4. Chorus: 8/10 – Fiestar’s main vocalists, Hyemi and Linzy, are responsible for the choruses. Though admittedly I biasedly believe the choruses in “You’re Pitiful” deserve a 9, it is not quite flawless enough to acquire that score. Nevertheless, the score will still be in the higher scale.

Mechanically, with two highly impressive and adept singers, this element of the choruses will carry no burden. Although Hyemi lacks her own nickname, she proves to be equally deserving of Linzy’s; both ladies emanate vocals that live up to “Honey Vocals.” The singing possesses a plethora of traits: melody, power, pacing, and as an overarching outcome, diversity. Focusing on those traits individually, the melody remains highly captivating and infatuating as a mixture of middle and high notes are used, and additionally, stretched. As for the pacing, it interchanges between an average singing rate and a slightly unhurried one. Despite how a fast rate is unheard, a simple change in pace, even if the general spectrum is still slow, still vastly aids the song. Finally, addressing the couple’s vocal power, this characteristic is what nearly ushers this section into a 9. Interestingly, the power fluctuates in “You’re Pitiful”; every line contains traces of power, but throughout the chorus, the amount of stress and strain placed per line greatly varies from another, something I have yet to truly hear often. Factoring all of these attributes, an excellent, beautiful flow, and overall, section exists. The diverse notes, changing pace, and fluctuating strain and emphasis per line create an exceptionally tuneful section that fails to dull. Unfortunately, the slight error that hinders the choruses from earning a 9 is its structure portion. While the choruses, from a sonic lens, are nearly, if not, flawless, both members replicate each other’s lines identically (ignoring lyrics; the melody and mechanics remain exactly akin). Initially, this does not seem pressing; with mechanics this stellar, having it repeat will not be harmful. Contrary to that, however, the uniqueness and potency of the chorus comes from hearing it once; when Linzy arrives for her lines, the same charm does not exist as for Hyemi.

Though overall it is highly miniscule, the rating will be an 8, which is still highly respectable as it represents, simply put, good or solid. If Linzy’s lines slightly differed or even continued the choruses’ excellent trait via a different format, a 9 would easily be earned. Nevertheless, a very impressive section, and as stated, while statistically and realistically the choruses hold at an 8, I do believe this section is a 9.

5. Rap: 6/10 – Yezi, expectedly, appears for the rap. From memories and replaying the song in my head, if I am accurate, her rap in “One More” was relatively mediocre. In terms of individual improvement, I will credit Yezi; while her rap in “One More” was weak, her rap in Fiestar’s current comeback is decent.

Glancing at her rap’s mechanical aspect, many standard characteristics are met. Deconstructing each feature individually, for the melody, though it is not necessarily extraordinarily tuneful, it satisfies for a rap. Furthermore, power follows suit; the added strength is not overly or underly forceful. In terms of flow, Yezi remains highly fluent and smooth; every line became executed properly and no peculiar pause or unfitting endless stream occurred. Lastly, for her pacing, an interesting incident does occur. Shifting away from usual trends, while most raps tend to remain set with a consistent rate, this rap section differentiates by having a rate that becomes increasingly faster. Tying somewhat into the structural component, Yezi’s pacing, most notably at the end, becomes highly hastened. Mechanically, it allows for variety and a showcase of fluency, and structurally, a natural transition occurs as the quickened pace reflects the upcoming pre-chorus’ style and energy.

In the end, an improvement is certainly seen, but in terms of presenting a highly captivating rap, not quite. Slightly above average will be the rating. The structural layout of the rap is admirable, however, with a mechanical aspect that is not utterly captivating, the score will not be higher, though it is not definitely not bad.

6. Bridge: 5/10 – The pre-chorus pair returns; Jei and Cao Lu handle the bridge, though towards the second half of it, practically every member, in essence, contributes (being specific, Jei, Hyemi, Linzy, and Cao Lu alternate turns).

The bridge is a slightly weaker section of the song. Conceptually, the bridge has potentially and is suiting, but in focus of it from an individual perspective, it does remain somewhat lacking. Analyzing the structure, in the large scheme, due to the final chorus possessing the climactic moment, the bridge, which often time is the section used for such, is now bereft of that role (for a side note, a reader did once point how interesting it was that many climactic points are rather identical, and either below or in a future review, I would love to address why that is so). As a result, providing a slight break and pause in the song becomes its revised purpose. In terms of achieving that objective, the bridge does, though questionably. Jei and Cao Lu’s initial lines are exceptionally tranquil and slow, and even with the second half, the used repetition simulate a momentary pause for the song. Unfortunately, though the repetition adds the pausing piece, in focus of the bridge itself, it proves to be horrendously tedious and mundane, and blatantly, leached of appeal. Interestingly, however, the mechanical aspect is not too hindered, even with the sheer repetition. The repeated line of “Why, why, why, why are you?” holds as melodic, and occasionally, even catchy. Even the first individual lines from Jei and Cao Lu are decent as the slower and lower singing offer a soothing, calming effect.

Though Fiestar’s vocals and skills lift the bridge’s weaker points, repeating a line, even if highly catchy, for many cycles does become incredibly dull. In addition, catchiness does not necessarily correlate to decency. Average will be the score, though respect should deservingly exist for Fiestar’s singing.

7. Conclusion: 9/10 – Specifically, the conclusion is its own separate section as it is the solo instrumental. However, it would be highly shameful if I utterly disregarded the final chorus as, in a multitude of ways, it is highly incorporated as the song’s conclusion. With that, the members involved are Hyemi, Linzy, and Yezi.

In focus of the final chorus, the sole miniscule issue of the structure becomes entirely fixed, and additionally, the sonic portion becomes refined further. With two-part singing from two members occurring, the previous lack of variety towards the second half dissipates; the final chorus prevails with remaining highly diverse due to soft, melodic note holds from Linzy, and additionally, from Yezi, standard, though slightly edited, singing vocals. Besides redressing the structure, the mechanics, as stunning as the singing already was, becomes enhanced. The two-part singing adds additional layers to the mechanical side: Linzy’s note hold is graceful and tuneful by itself, and though Yezi’s lines may not be individually appealing, the contrast created between Linzy’s part and Hyemi’s usual singing (or Linzy’s, once she returns to singing) further improve the sound.

Swapping to the technical conclusion, after an excellent climactic peak to “You’re Pitiful,” utilizing a conclusion that remains highly similar to the introduction proves to be suiting. Hastily covering the mechanical and structural parts, the instrumental remains pleasing, as it is the introduction’s, and for the latter of structural, with being lengthy and a soundtrack, it provides a perfect end to “You’re Pitiful”; final impressions are left, the previous chorus still lurks, and the longer duration guarantees no abruptness transpires.

A very high score will miraculously be earned. The final chorus proves to be highly attractive and potent in both categories of mechanical and structural, and with the true conclusion perfectly ensuring a smooth end, an exceptionally high score will be proper. With reviews being more realistic and my desire to bring genuine ratings, a 9 here should indicate how outstandingly impressive this section is.   

– Line Distribution: 9/10 – In honesty, I have forgotten “One More” ‘s rating for Line Distribution. Nevertheless, in “You’re Pitiful,” I expect the score to be relatively high as there are only 5 members, and the song itself remains diverse and alternative from a casual standpoint.

Fiestar’s leader, Jei, possesses lines at the verse, the two pre-choruses, and the bridge. With her amount totalling up as 4 sections, depending on the following members, this may or may not be an issue. However, based on previous reviews, 4 sections tend to be the proper amount, thus, I will presume Jei’s share remains proper.

For the group’s fierce rapper and youngest member, Yezi receives spotlight at the verse, her solo rap, and a subtle task of two-part singing at the final chorus. With 3 sections being the outcome, assuming no major disparity occurs in comparison to the remaining members, no problems are apparent.

Cao Lu, their lovely member who is actually Chinese and not Korean, remains responsible for lines occurring at the two pre-choruses and the bridge. Although numerically she has 3 sections, unlike, for example, Yezi, who possesses the exact quantity of sections, Cao Lu’s lines are significantly shorter. Though in the broader sense that remains miniscule, it could be an impairing factor later. Nevertheless, as of now, with 3 out of 5 members holding similar quantities, Fiestar’s line distribution for “You’re Pitiful” is respectable.

Transitioning to the main vocalists pair, firstly focusing on Hyemi, anxiety does occur due to her role. Brushing aside predictions, her lines involve the 3 choruses, and with having a lengthier duration, no issues are present unless if the time span becomes excessive. 3 sections is her total.

“Honey Vocals” Linzy follows suit with Hyemi; her lines exist at the 3 choruses, and the two-part singing will be accounted for inside the third chorus. With that, 3 sections is the amount of sections she possesses.

For a very slight bonus, the second half of the bridge does practically carry everyone’s vocals. With the number of sections being nearly equal with either a 4 or 3, a high score will be earned. The sole existing issue appears as the varying durations; Hyemi and Linzy’s lines are partially lengthier than Cao Lu’s, for example. However, considering every member did have sufficient and consistent spotlight, a very high score will be earned.

– Instrumental: 7/10 – The instrumental for “You’re Pitiful” fares well in terms of the mechanical and even the structural layer. On its own, the soundtrack presents a melodic tune that derives from the unique beep sound and guitar. Furthermore, a pleasing and complementing rhythm is attached; the heavier beats add onto the guitar and beeps to further accentuate the soundtrack’s melody. Moving over to the structural portion, the instrumental vastly excels. Though individually the instrumental is not absolutely enticing, once combined with the vocals, it serves a crucial role: the instrumental perfectly supports the vocals. During the more energetic sections, such as the choruses, the instrumental reciprocates the energy via adding more complexity and an increased rate. In addition, despite the soundtrack retaining either a passive or assertive position, it remains subtle enough to deter away spotlight, and thus, Fiestar’s vocals still hold the main focus.

Above average will be the score. Though the soundtrack languishes on its own, once coupled with the group’s singing, the soundtrack immensely thrives with being a perfect mix to the vocals.

– Meaning: 5/10 – With a title of “You’re Pitiful,” a frustrated vibe radiates. A love-related story will most likely be the scenario, and unfortunately, it seems that a lover now dreads their love-interest due to certain circumstances. Ending the speculations, through these Korean-to-English lyrics, the translation should clarify the story. As always, these are not 100% accurate:

The cold words you said to me
It has been a while, but you’ve finally faded
But my heart races in my sleep sometimes
My broken heart hasn’t healed yet

You were bossy (Baby I don’t know, oh I don’t know)
I was thrown (Baby I don’t know, oh I don’t know)
Yet after all this time, you want me to hold your hand

You’re so pitiful, more so than when you left me behind
So pitiful, over the past few months
I’ve heard things are different for you now
You’ve become so small
You’re pitiful, no matter how hard you try
You’ve changed so much
The way you talk, the way you look
So unlike you, so weak

Yeah, le’ go
You and I, what brought us all the way here?
Only wounds remain between us, I can’t believe it
Our good days, when we were happy to be together
Ruins of the days’ past
But now when I see you I feel pity for you

You were bossy (Baby I don’t know, oh I don’t know)
I was thrown (Baby I don’t know, oh I don’t know)
You have your head down, trying to escape my eyes

You’re so pitiful, more so than when you left me behind
So pitiful, over the past few months
I’ve heard things are different for you now
You’ve become so small
You’re pitiful, no matter how hard you try
You’ve changed so much
The way you talk, the way you look
So unlike you, so weak

Don’t give me that look
Don’t reach your hand out with those eyes
I don’t want you, yeah
I don’t want you no more, no more, no more
What is this? Why, why, why are you?
Why, why, why, why are you?
After all this time, why, why are you?
Why, why, why, why are you?

You’re so pitiful, more so than when you left me behind
(You’ve become so pitiful)
So pitiful, over the past few months
(Over the past few months)
I’ve heard things are different for you now
You’ve become so small
You’re pitiful, no matter how hard you try
(It’s nothing like before)
You’ve changed so much
(You’ve become nothing)
The way you talk, the way you look
So unlike you, so weak

In terms of what the lyrics depict, a lady or man discloses their pity and ponders over their former partner. Despite how “it has been a while,” the lover admits their “broken heart hasn’t healed yet.” The catalyst behind the couple’s separation appears to be due to the love-interest being “bossy,” and for what truly provoked the split, the lover “was thrown” away and understandably tired of so. Interestingly and ironically, however, despite tossing away their lover, the love-interest “[wants] [the lover] to hold [their] hand.” Of course, the lover decides to not submit to that, and thus, the title of the song exists; the lover states the love-interest is “so pitiful, more so than when [she/he] left [them] behind.” Further remarks are created: “You’ve become so small, you’re pitiful no matter how hard you try,” and “You’ve changed so much, the way you talk, the way you look.”

In summary, while the plot remains interesting, and in a few ways, even admirable in terms of the lover holding her/his stance, it lacks many details. The verse and rap are the main sections that bring forth extra details, but ignoring those two sections, the rest focus moreover on labeling and degrading the love-interest. If more varying details were added versus the current high emphasis on shaming the love-interest, even if deserved, a much higher score would be granted. As of now, average will be the score.

– “Critical Corner”: Blissfully or not blissfully, the “Critical Corner” has little use here. Also, as a few readers may notice, I have officially incorporated the “Critical Corner,” though the label is liable to change depending on readers cringing and complaining feedback. On topic, nothing of the lyrics spawn a discussion. At most, I will claim the lover does the correct choice with refusing to get back with the love-interest, a seemingly horrible partner. A relationship should be genuinely cheerful and full of love, not one of constant arguments and one-sided points. As for the love-interest character, a tiny discussion could take place regarding his/her behavior: obsessiveness. Although the lover has her/his moments of painful memories, overall, they are still capable of progressing on. In opposite, the love-interest fails to; she/he remains “weak” and has changed, for the worse, as a person. Losing the lover has prompted them to become, simply put, “pitiful.” Realistically, while there may definitely be periods of immense emotional trauma after a separation, to utterly lose an entire identity, such as the love-interest’s case, should never occur. Remaining an individual person and not someone who invests their entire life into another person should always be in mind, whether it is during a relationship or simply any situation. Excluding my romantic advice for readers, nothing else is pressing and worthy of discussing in this song (which, in truth, is a good thing).

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Choreography Score: 7/10 – While this message may be incredibly late, for readers who return to the top, after the “Song Score,” which did get revised as a label, the song’s sonic rating is listed. In “You’re Pitiful” ‘s case, it does render as an “above average” one. Also, as for the label change, instead of using “Song Total Score,” I decided to simplify it as “Total” is inconsistent (there is no “Choreography Total Score”) and redundant (blatantly, the “Song Score” is the “Total”).

Focusing back onto the choreography of the song, after watching the dance practice multiple times, and additionally, even their dance tutorial, the choreography is a mixture of opinions. Firstly, on the subject of their dance tutorial, admittedly, it is, for a lack of the proper diction, highly corny. In fact, the degree of such makes my professor’s jokes highly more bearable brings additional appreciation to other highly jocular jokes I have heard, such as from my incredible professor. Now truly on topic, the dance almost reaches a rating of 8, but due to a few prominent errors, it will remain a 7, which nonetheless is highly respectable.

For the key points of the dance, “You’re Pitiful” extensively shines. Firstly, the addition of chairs and backup dancers add an appealing complexity to the choreography; rather than standard dancing, the ladies of Fiestar are, though apprehensively, dancing on top of chairs, and for many key points, the chairs serve as a bridge for the backup dancers to be involved and for unique formations and transitions. On the subject of backup dancers, the gentlemen partaking in the choreography serve their role effectively; additional formations and key points, especially in the form of giving the coat, are gleaned from them, and simultaneously, stealing attention away from Fiestar is not a problem. Also, with many sections possessing their own maneuvers and differentiating from the rest, the key points further flourish. When it comes the dance’s weaker part, the syncing is not entirely accurate. Every moment excluding the choruses (except the final chorus) remains precise with syncing to the music. With the choruses, the key point after taking the coat remains vague; the shaking of hips left and right and going down to up do not seem to correlate to the music. Adding on, the moment afterwards of walking to the chair remains highly bleak of syncing, though fixing that would be rather difficult if not impossible.

Despite the unsynced choruses, with very splendid key points and syncing elsewhere, the choreography will still hold a 7. If the choruses proved to be slightly more reflective of the song’s sonic component, such as the final chorus, an 8 would easily be earned. Above average will remain the score, and even so, the dance is still beautifully crafted and constructed.  

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Overall Score: 7/10 (7/10 raw score) – With averaging out the Song Score and Choreography Score, a pure 7 is the result. In the end, Fiestar’s recent comeback of “Pitiful” can be regarded as “above average,” and while I biasedly disagree, it does sound proper for a rating. Personally, I hold this song to an 8 or even a 9. For those curious on my preference of songs, “You’re Pitiful” can be seen as the epitome for such: the vocals contain multiple diverse traits and are the main focus, the instrumental avoids being electronic based, and for how the sections are executed, the progression and flow of the song as a whole is gradual. As a result, I hold this song as either an 8 or 9, but of course, being realistic and fair, it is solely above average, which is still admirable. Should Fiestar continue their streak, their popularity should rise incredibly. “One More” was a decent song, and with “You’re Pitiful” adding on, future comebacks will be highly anticipated.

As I always, and will always say, thank you very much for reading. Strangely, this review took many hours to write (roughly 7 hours almost, which is absurdly high and “pitiful”). That said, however, to bring in positivity, I am officially cleared of my other activity (depending on time, a future reflection may be posted regarding that), and thus, I will have much more time for reviews. Currently, however, I will be allocating that extra time towards school work, but after that, it will hopefully all be invested into reviews. Also, to the person who did request this, I hope you enjoy it. Though it is pure luck that we both happened to want this review, I do hope this read is delightful.

In terms of upcoming reviews, BESTie’s “I Need You,” a requested review, will be out promptly after this one. Thank you for being patient, I will work hard to give a thorough review of it. Other reviews after that will most likely be a male group. Two are in mind, though time will tell. After this review is published, I will attempt to publish two more reviews, and considering my extra free time, I expect that to be an easier feat.  

With this being the end, thank you once more, and do look forward to extra reviews, and hopefully, a vastly accelerated rate of reviews. Even if “it has been a while” since my last review, “my heart races in my sleep sometimes” and “my broken heart hasn’t healed yet” knowing many readers desire quicker reviews. Stay tuned for future reviews and more corny conclusions. Keep checking back for a review on BESTie’s “I Need You.”

4Minute’s Mini-Album – “Crazy” Review

Reviewed on March 7, 2015

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Firstly, before beginning, I want to thank readers for giving feedback in terms of desired types of reviews. My previous album review was on AOA’s Mini-Album “Like a Cat” (Review), and though many readers enjoyed it (perhaps since it is a significantly quicker read), I believed, and more accurately, believe, it is disorganized in a few ways. As a result, I became hesitant on releasing album reviews, but due to a few readers liking them, I will continue to publish these types of reviews. That being said, I have two album reviews in mind (including this one), and through practice and trials, I anticipate these types of reviews improving.

Before diving into 4Minute’s album, I will leave a few remarks regarding my previous review on their release of “Crazy.” Interestingly, perhaps utterly coincidentally, a few readers displayed heavy dislike towards it: 5 followers were lost. Of course, this may be pure coincidence and completely unrelated to the previous review, but considering past instances, a chance that the two correlate is high. In an older review on Dal Shabet’s “B.B.B” (feel free to read it: Dal Shabet – “B.B.B” Review), though the degree was slightly less, 3 followers were lost after the review had been posted for a few days. Now, to clarify and before diving into my speculations on why these incidents occurred, I am not necessarily upset at the lost of followers (quantity-wise, there is a miniscule impact), but rather, the connotation behind such is what disturbs me; if it is true that certain reviews have prompted unfollowing, it showcases the general, inefficient response many people unveil when faced with disagreement or sensitive subjects: evasion. Before progressing, for further clarification, while I may be personally vexed at their decision, I am using assumptions (versus the chance of pure coincidence), and thus, I am most likely not accurate in the following claims. Secondly, even if my speculations prove to be true, though I disagree with the choice made, I still respect those individuals’ decision; often time people are lost in the idea of “right” and “wrong,” but realistically and as I constantly promote, it is not about two specific angles, but instead, the infinite angles in which a person may view a certain topic, and specifically here, how one reacts to it. Lastly, even with my own stance, I will apologize. If any reader was or has ever been indeed offended, I am sincerely sorry. While I will still continue offering my own perspective, I am not perfect, will not be perfect, and in fact, should not be perfect. That said, I may at times leave offensive remarks unintentionally, and while I could become defensive and argue I intended no harm, it is not what I say that matters, but instead, how a person perceives my message. As a result, I am sorry for those who did feel irked due to my previous review (and older ones).

With context added, I will now explain my personal opinion regarding those who did unfollow after my review on 4Minute’s “Crazy.” To potentially answer why a few have chosen to do so, there are primarily 2 reasons: for one, people might have heavily disagreed with my tangent, and secondly, many could have opposed my numerical ratings. Addressing the latter first, disliking my review of “Crazy” on the basis of my ratings is rather staggering; the purpose of my reviews (and reviews in general) is to offer my own personal opinion regarding a song, show, or whichever medium. Furthermore, while in the past I have arguably failed at this, in current times I remain as unbiased as possible and grade based on a systematic deconstruction of a song. As a result, what I rate a song is simply my stance of how solid or weak it is, nothing more, nothing less. A lower rated song does not mean a group/artist is bad and vice-versa with a higher score; the song itself is the focus, not necessarily how the group/artist themselves hold. Reiterating my final point, these reviews are based solely on my opinion. I am not a professional music producer or analyzer, I am simply a reviewer who breaks apart songs on a simplistic level. Additionally, music is exceptionally unique; what is deemed amazing by one may be revolting to another. What would have been more desirable, and in truth is what I hope, is that the people who did decide to unfollow me did so due to disliking my process of reviewing; perhaps my mediocre writing and analysis repelled them away. In that scenario, it is completely acceptable, but should it have been the lower scores that caused them to flee, that remains highly questionable. In terms of the other reason, my opinion regarding why it is an issue to criticize 4Minute for “too much makeup” could have been too extreme, and thus, I could have offended a few. Nevertheless, I will not shy away from putting forth my opinion. Rather than taking my stances as unequivocal facts, they should be regarded as my personal perspective, and hopefully, new insight is gleaned in the end.

On track with this review, considering I did potentially offend readers with my review on “Crazy,” I am hoping this review will clarify misunderstandings, and additionally, offer some extra showcase for 4Minute. Their mini-album titled “Crazy” showcases 6 sings. Unfortunately, as admirable as the ladies of 4Minute may be, while their skills with singing and rapping are definitely disclosed, many songs in this album are not too solid. On the positive side, however, a few songs do shine, but overall, this album is not necessarily the strongest I have heard. With enough background added, it is time to begin. Though I could make this transition “Stand Out,” I am afraid it will lead readers to being “Crazy,” and if not that, then certainly readers will “Show Me” their anger as if it was a “Cold Rain.” Due to that, I will now have to “Cut It Out,” but hopefully readers receive a “Tickle Tickle Tickle” feeling.

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1. “Crazy” – Crazy (Review)

Since I have already reviewed the song via my standard reviews, I will not cover it here. For those curious, I will link my review of it. Also, to bring in some cohesion for album reviews, I will use the following format: first, the lyrics will be briefly summarized, and after that, the vocals and the song’s prominent aspects will be elaborated on. Due to a less detailed approach, I will not leave numerical ratings as those are reserved for standard song reviews.

2. “Cold Rain” – Cold Rain (Audio)

Foreshadowed by its title, a sadder story accompanies “Cold Rain.” Additionally, due to the emotional atmosphere, “Cold Rain” takes the genre of ballad. Progressing past the title, “Cold Rain” depicts a lover who loses their love-interest. While death can be argued as to why the couple has separated, many details imply it was a typical breakup; the man/lady lost their love-interest, either on their own decision or the love-interest’s, after discovering many “warm lies.” With being naive and deceived, the lover fell upon “the sin of nicely being in love because [she/he] didn’t know love, [she/he] just believed in people.” As a result, the main character now remains in anguish; “without [the love-interest], [she/he] [struggles].”

Ignoring the melancholy lyrics, in terms of the song itself, it has its promising aspects as well as weaker ones. Focusing on the vocals, 4Minute proves how adept they are at singing. Every member showcases phenomenal vocals: Jihyun offers melodic humming and single lines, Gayoon continues her usual higher tiered singing, Jiyoon, surprisingly, sings versus rapping, and at that she excels, and lastly, for the members that do rap, both Hyuna and Sohyun unveil a soothing, smooth rap. Swapping to the song’s structure, unlike the mechanical aspects that excel, it slightly falters. Overviewing the entirety of “Cold Rain,” while it is a ballad, and thus, remaining calm and consistent, it proves to be stagnant; section to section, the same flow and style retains. As a result, the ballad does lose a sense of uniqueness and comes off as slightly repetitive.

Overall, however, “Cold Rain” is a decent ballad. From what I am aware of, “Cold Rain” will be the first ballad they have released in a long time (if not the first, though I am certain they possess an older ballad). 4Minute’s vocals heavily shine in this song. The downfall exists predominantly in the lack of variety and fluctuation per sections. Ignoring that, however, “Cold Rain” is not too bad.

3. “Tickle Tickle Tickle” – Tickle Tickle Tickle (Audio)

With a highly absurd title, many will ponder over its meaning. As jocular as the title itself, the lyrics showcase, specifically, though as always the main character could be any gender, a lady who is “tickled” by a boy via a “touch that brushed” by and simply her feelings of infatuation. In short, it is a more flirtatious story of a lover “going crazy” over their love-interest.

For the musical aspect of “Tickle Tickle Tickle,” to already offer my stance, it is the album’s weakest song, and in general, a very weak song. While the bassline may be exceptionally catchy, it becomes abominable and vexing. Furthermore, the vocals lean towards the poorer side as well; obnoxious vocals equally exist, though there are moments where lower pitched singing is heard. Nevertheless, the lower noted, slower, charming lines do not compensate for the rest of the vocals nor the highly chaotic instrumental. In focus of the song’s structure, variations are minimal. Factoring in the endless bassline, the song becomes extremely sluggish and loses much of its strength, assuming it had some in the first place.

Overall, “Tickle Tickle Tickle” is moreover a sillier song. The vocals remain tiresome, the song follows a mundane structure, and most loathing, the bassline taints the song from any potential that could have existed. Arguably catchy, but certainly, humorous and pitiful.

4. “Show Me” – Show Me (Audio)

Truthfully, this was the song I highly anticipated. From a teaser before 4Minute’s comeback, the chorus of “Show Me” was revealed. Instantly I was captivated, but blatantly, a song does not solely comprise of a single chorus.

On topic, the lyrics of “Show Me” showcases a flirtatious story involving a lady and a scenario with her love-interest (as always, a male could also be the main character). Unlike, for example, “Cold Rain” where the main character is hurt from love, the depicted character in “Show Me” remains a sheer opposite: they are highly confident, satisfied, and in some ways, even arrogant. Relating specifically to the lyrics, a lady is attempting to win a boy’s love since “[she] knows [she’s] exactly [the love-interest’s] style.” Somewhat comically, her desired outcome seems be off-centered. Often time her frustration is shared, such as “Where are you looking? Look here,” and “I’m sick of the stupid boys coming at me” in reference to other males that desire her love, and in addition, even towards other females for “copying [her].”

Addressing “Show Me” in terms of the vocals, power remains a highlighted aspect. Remaining impactful versus soft and melodic is a style “Show Me” adopts. Nevertheless, even with power being moreover allocated than melody, the song still retains a tuneful nature. Individually, every member shines via her section; Hyuna and Sohyun fluently handle the rap sections, Gayoon, Jiyoon, and Jihyun offer solid vocals for the remaining standard singing parts. For what does hinder “Show Me,” the structure is partially at fault. The post-choruses leech a hefty amount of positive attention. “Eh eh eh eh eh eh” being tediously replayed becomes a drawback. Despite that, however, “Show Me” is not too bad. The choruses, raps, verses, and even pre-choruses are noteworthy.

In the end, “Show Me” is a stronger song for the album. In general, it may not be highly promising, but it can hold decently. Repetition remains the pressing issue.

5. “Stand Out” – Stand Out (Audio)

To clarify, from my knowledge, a person is technically featured in this song: “Manager.” For those considering that a strange alias for an artist or wondering who he even is, “Manager” is actually 4Minute’s manager. This would also explain his part being dialogue versus singing and such. Overall, however, “Stand Out,” in essence, does not feature any artist.

With that in mind, the lyrics for “Stand Out” do reflect, once more, a flirtatious scenario. However, in this song’s case, the story proves to be highly jocular, and in certain instances, even cute and sweet. Whether it was due to the boy’s “sexy voice” or, humorously, “fantastic butt,” “Stand Out” reveals a lady who is highly infatuated with her love-interest; she is in love with a boy who she labels as her “superstar.” She has “found [him]” to “stand out,” and in fact, “[she has] dibs on [him].” Other sweet details exist, such as desiring the love-interest to “come into [her] arms.” Furthermore, for where 4Minute’s manager becomes featured, it is a phone dialogue that provides extra details. For those curious on what was said, it should be similar to this (not 100% accurate, but seeing as no lyrics translation has covered it, I will):

Love-Interest: Hello
Lover: What’s up/What are you up to?
Love-Interest: I’m currently at my house
Lover: Come out here
Love-Interest: Yes? No, I do not want to
Lover: Come out right now, coming out?
Love-Interest: Noona… (“Noona” is the term younger males use to refer to older females)
Lover: Hey!
Love-Interest: Wait a moment…ugh…

In summary, the lyrics are indeed comical and sweet. Shifting to the song’s musical component, to instantly address a positive point, “Stand Out” does stand out via being diverse. Structurally, the song remains varied, and every section possesses its own niche. In addition, the progression of the song remains decent; transitions to the next section are fluent, and for the flow, “Stand Out” follows a standard path of calm to upbeat. Glancing at the vocals, solely the post-chorus remains questionable. During that section, the vocals do languish and become wearisome. Ignoring that, however, the rest prove to be solid. For example, the choruses, arguably the main highlight, remain highly impactful yet melodic, and other sections, such as the pre-choruses, possess their own charm via lower pitched singing.

Overall, “Stand Out” proves to be a decent song. The vocals and structure hold well, and additionally, the lyrics are comical and intriguing. For 4Minute’s album, this is one of the stronger songs.   

6. “Cut It Out” – Cut It Out (Audio)

Firstly, from the start, I will claim this should have been the title song over “Crazy.” The same concept is kept, but musically it is significantly, excessively significantly better (though the dance for it may be less fitting conceptually). Also, I am impressed by the versatility of 4Minute; Jiyoon has proven to be highly talented with singing, and in opposite, Sohyun has exhibited stunning rapping. Returning back to “Cut It Out,” this is the album’s strongest song, and even in general, this song is definitely respectable and to a high standard.

Lyrically, with the title of “Cut It Out” (or the Korean title of “Stop At The First Verse”), and considering every other song in the album being related to love, this song would automatically be associated with such. Surprisingly, it is not. “Cut It Out” can be related to love, but overall, it is more; “Cut It Out” discloses a crucial message: do what you want to do and ignore those who oppose you. Jiyoon’s moment at the chorus easily summarizes the lyrics: “Leave me alone, I have my own world. I’m gonna go my own way, with my own moves, with a natural rhythm. My own rules, a dream that’s different from others.” Overall, “Cut It Out” elaborates that idea and encourages people to truly follow what they desire, not what others believe. For a simple example, if someone, as a male, enjoys makeup, they should be able to do so without being put down. Relating back to “Crazy,” should a lady desire to use heavier makeup, she should feel free to do so without warranting hate. The message “Cut It Out” gives is one that deserves to be reiterated.

From a musical lens, the song still holds well. Structurally, a beautiful aspect is the utilized contrast: rapping versus singing. Viewing the song from an overarching perspective, the song is either in the form of a rap or standard singing. Though both may be significantly different, the difference that does exist augments both parties; the raps are more bold, fierce, smooth, and brisk, and the singing are additionally melodic, graceful, and even powerful. Another point worthy of acknowledgement are the transitions. Despite the rapping and singing taking significant shifts, “Cut It Out” does an excellent job keeping it all cohesive. Lastly, in terms of the vocals, 4Minute’s highest potential becomes uncloaked. Individually, every member completely aced their lines. Sohyun and Hyuna continue their streak of superb rapping, be it remaining melodic, fluent, and swift, Gayoon, as expected, flawlessly handles the more vocally-intensive lines at the chorus, Jiyoon exposes her versatility of being a phenomenal rapper and singer, and finally, Jihyun utterly redeems her poorer bridge in “Crazy” by granting an outstanding bridge.

“Cut It Out” is by far the album’s superior song. The lyrics are detailed and meaningful, the song remains unique with its distinct rapping and singing, and for the vocals, the 5 ladies continue to garner the ears (and hearts) of listeners.  

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Personal Ranking:

Offering my own position regarding the songs, here is my personal order, from best to worst, of the songs in 4Minute’s mini-album “Crazy.” Bear in mind, this list is based on my limited opinion and knowledge; a more thorough and systematic breakdown of each song to find their statistical value would provide a more accurate list (such as if I were to review every song through my standard review format).

1. “Cut It Out”

2. “Stand Out”

3. “Cold Rain”

4. “Show Me”

5. “Crazy”

6. “Tickle Tickle Tickle”

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With this being the end, I will now offer my general opinion regarding the album. A few songs are noteworthy, but many of the songs are either purely average or somewhat horrendous. Buying their album should mainly be done to support 4Minute as many of the songs are not too solid. Of course, a few stand out such as “Stand Out,” but other than those songs, I do not recommend this album. Nevertheless, I do believe 4Minute is a highly talented group, and biasedly, I do adore their current concept.

As I always say, thank you very much for reading this. This review is definitely a lot shorter than standard song reviews, and thus, I am certain many will enjoy it for its length. Truthfully, it is a huge challenge to write album reviews as I cannot make a sound conclusion due to not properly deconstructing a song. There are many layers to a song, and with album reviews barely reaching the sheer surface, I feel dissatisfied in terms of my analysis. But, of course, to summarize an idea by an amazing English teacher, the hardest writings are not the longest ones, but instead, the shorter ones. That said, I will still publish one more album review, and unless if any requests are sent in, I will not create more except for a special occasions (similar to show reviews). One aspect that does remain promising, however, for reviewing albums is, blatantly, they are much shorter, and thus, more time efficient. This all also reminds me, on the subject of requests, I did receive one. Although I am certainly going to review one of the sent in songs, I will gauge my current schedule and may review Fiestar’s comeback first before that (to the requester, if I do slightly delay the request, I am very sorry). Many songs are in mind, it all depends on my determination.

With this being the end, thank you once more for reading. Many reviews are in mind and I will do my best to publish them. For now, please continue to “Show Me” support and love. Though I may appear as “Crazy,” at the very least, I “Stand Out.” As long as I do not bring a “Cold Rain” such as through an appalling conclusion, I am certain that readers will feel a sense of “Tickle Tickle Tickle.” Perhaps this is a cue to “Cut It Out.” On a more serious note, stay tuned for perhaps a review on Fiestar’s new song, a requested review, and many other songs.

where you from?

Hello. A rather simple question, but it is one that will provide exceptional clarification for readers. I am, and writing, from America. Contrary to a few humorous ideas, I am not from South Korea nor do I live there. Also while I am at it, I am not a professional musician or producer (and as a side note, I believe I have finally come to a conclusion on what I would enjoy doing for my life/an occupation). 

Many readers have came to those ideas, and while in some cases I feel exceptionally flattered, such as readers believing I’m a skilled musician, these are not quite the truth. In fact, some are far from it, literally in terms of being from South Korea and figuratively with music (I need to get back into guitar).

Anyhow, thank you very much for a quick question. Hopefully this answer provides insight for you, and of course, for other readers as well. 

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On the subject of quick, for some hasty news, I am currently in the progress of reviewing an album. I am hoping the review will be out by this weekend, though it may potentially be later due to schoolwork. Nevertheless, I will do my best to release it soon. For other news, I have a few English subtitled videos being made. For those who enjoy those, look forward to them. Lastly, Fiestar had a comeback very recently. If I manage my time properly, I do wish to review the song, but already I will claim I am rather impressed by it. Their comeback song does highlight the group’s musical capabilities, and knowing Fiestar, I expect the choreography component to be equally promising (I have only listened to the audio; I have yet to see a performance, and hopefully, a dance practice video). Besides Fiestar, I have an ever growing list of songs to review, and unfortunately, it will not be until the end of March where I will receive extra free time (refer to my Blog Reflection: February 2015 for context). As a result, my rate will still remain sluggish, but I will attempt my best to keep it productive (on the positive side, I will have a week off for the last week of March).

That said, thank you for reading. Stay tuned for an album review that will be published shortly.    

4Minute – “Crazy” Review

4Minute – Crazy (Live Performance)

4Minute – Crazy

Reviewed on March 1, 2015

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Personal Message: 4Minute’s comeback was one I planned to cover for quite a while, but due to time restraints and other work, it was delayed. Nevertheless, I will now cover their recent return of “Crazy.” To already address the link, it is a standard live performance, and as a result, for those who desire full clarity, searching for the official audio will provide that. Thankfully, though, the dance is disclosed (though for future readers, a potential dance practice might become released). For other news, despite February being a much shorter month, chances of meeting my personal goal of 6 reviews may be possible after all. But, of course, determination will be the deciding factor.

Focusing on 4Minute, I have reviewed their previous song of “Whatcha Doin’ Today,” and besides recalling how atrocious my review was archaic work, this provides a chance to see some growth and change by contrasting the two reviews. Even though skimming over that review gives a tremendous sense of embarrassment, in the far future, should I ever glance back at this review, I hope the same feeling of shame returns. Continuing to improve is always in mind.  

Now, to be truly on topic with 4Minute (feel free to skip straight to the review at this point), their current song of “Crazy” has been garnering a solid amount of popularity. The concept for this song is rather indescribable, but to vaguely breach the surface, fierceness, boldness, and confidence are summarizing adjectives for the song. Many have enjoyed this style, and in fact, according to 4Minute themselves, they have noticed that female fans, in specific, are the ones that have been going “Crazy” over their concept. Of course, there may be readers that find that irrelevant, but I will bring my opinion on why I find it beneficial that 4Minute’s female fans, and plain female viewers, are taking pride in their comeback. Bringing in an effective, transparent example as for why that matters, let us first address a common criticism that exists against 4Minute’s current concept: too much makeup.

Before revealing how 4Minute’s comeback combats that prevalent comment and significantly more, first, I will offer my own take on it. Though the remark of critiquing 4Minute’s stage appearances may be considered miniscule due to the idea of how they are idols or since it is simply offering opinion on style, there is a much greater danger to such; consistent, heavy, and ubiquitous judgement on the group’s appearances reinforce multiple negative mindsets, be it emphasis and value on purely physical appearance, but more vitally, the idea of policing females becomes unveiled (if 4Minute were males in the first place, much of the criticism regarding appearances would cease; refer to my review on Hyorin’s x Jooyoung’s “Erase” for a miniscule example). Taking a more critical stance, one must ask who is predominantly commenting on the group’s “excessive makeup,” and in truth, the general person to do such is most likely a boy. However, bear in mind, even if males are the ones mainly remarking such, it is true that ladies can still be equally guilty, even if less in quantity (later I will explain this).

Referring back to why a simple mere comment of “too much makeup” can induce a hefty of damage, if boys are truly the ones creating those comments, rather than defending their right to make remarks on a lady’s physical appearance, it is better to challenge why they deserve that right in the first place. Male privilege, and more clearly, sexism, comes into play, but before progressing any further, I will address this possible refute: “But females can critique a male’s look just as much.” Blatantly, both genders can, and do, critique one another’s appearance. While that contributes to the described issue of emphasis towards physical beauty (to save time, refer to my review of Juniel’s “I Think I’m In Love” for the beauty-related issue side), there is a very noteworthy disparity: males are more often the ones to do the judging, and thus, in that regard, they set the standards for how females should dress, but furthermore, in reverse, no beauty standard is ever set for them; seldom is a boy told to be “pretty” (but of course, there are still exceptions; some men are told and expected to be pretty). After all, recall the many day-to-day examples that have become, sadly, normalized and solely aimed towards ladies; females are told to “smile,” to “not get dirty,” and more. Now addressing the earlier piece of how a few ladies may be the ones to actually impose such comments, such as the previous two examples, this ties into another concept: internalizing sexism. The main idea of how males police and control females for the sake of themselves are not necessarily always imposed by males, but occasionally, and more accurately worded, once again, sadly, commonly, females have internalized that concept as well, and as a result, impose it onto other females.

Anyhow, since I have introduced too many concepts, let us focus back to the main, initial argument of why critiquing 4Minute for having “too much makeup” is exponentially negative. Ignoring the side of valuing sole physical beauty versus non-physical beauty, the idea I wish to challenge is how males tend to be the sole-center for everything. In an androcentric society, such as this case, the fallout of such is seen through this sheer comment of “too much makeup.” The main reason for why a boy would create that comment is, despite whether this reason is realized or not, they dislike the style. They dislike the excessive makeup since they prefer lighter makeup on ladies. They also dislike it when a lady dresses up in a certain way but not another, they also dislike it when a lady styles her hair in a certain way but not another, they also dislike it when a lady succeeds them and is smarter. Point is, that sole line, that single, seemingly harmless line of “I dislike it when 4Minute has too much makeup,” is the invisible, subtle privilege given to males that allows them to have, and to perpetuate, control and power over females, and in this specific case, control of females’ physical appearances. A male (or female) saying that comment is, in essence, claiming 4Minute’s appearance is not appealing, yet it should be pleasing, for males’ sake and enjoyment. For them. Again, the male-centered idea and concept is the catalyst for this comment, hence why it is extremely negative as it implies females should be set and held to the standard of males, as if females were purely dolls versus the incredible, beautiful, intelligent, and highly talented humans they truly are.

Assuming readers have not skipped this section or swore at my name and wished for my life span to be shortened, I will bring in some positivity. Firstly, while I targeted, and truthfully, nearly antagonized males, I do not want to correlate my previous words so that every male is guilty on an individual level. In fact, in truth, as long as one is a male, these hidden privileges are in place and unfair advantages are created. It is not the individual person at fault, but rather, a society and a system to blame (and the side of how ladies can also be equally guilty of the criticizing and therefore contributing to this issue). Also, if a person has made a comment, male or female, I am not here to insult and degrade perpetrators; rather than shaming and embarrassing, I believe a more vital and important scenario is possible. For readers who have commented on 4Minute’s or other ladies, men, whoever, for their physical appearance, be it makeup or fashion, this is a chance to simply self reflect and to improve from mistakes. Instead of shutting down and avoiding guilt, taking time to address and correct is highly more efficient, and in the long run, more meaningful. With all of this said, bear in mind, this is a very specific angle in which I personally viewed this issue from. I am certain that another person is in high disagreement, and in fact, many probably are. After all, some may simply claim I am being overly critical and sensitive towards a very genuine feedback on 4Minute’s makeup. Every opinion is worthy of acknowledgement, and thus, my point is not to necessarily convince readers to adopt my mindset, but rather, I hope to offer a new perspective, one in which agree or disagreement may occur.

Anyhow, to relate back to the much earlier claim of why 4Minute’s comeback is highly popular, especially with female fans and viewers, whether intended or not, this comeback, in many ways, bestows a large amount of confidence to females in terms of challenging restrictions placed upon them. For one example, the idea of “too much makeup” is challenged as, blatantly, the 5 ladies are styled with such and showcasing how physically and non-physically beautiful they are with such. Also, as mentioned, and without going on another discussion (I will actually save this for my upcoming review if I remember), the concept of “Crazy” is seldom given to female groups; male groups are often time the one given an upfront, intimidating style, and even the style of music with the heavier bass, fierce rapping and such are reserved for males. However, in 4Minute’s case, that trend becomes challenged as they are indeed handling a concept that is rarely seen for female groups (and in the past, even “What’s Your Name,” though significantly less in degree, is a concept that contests the norms).

Hopefully readers were not repelled away, and for future references I will do a better job of restraining myself (though I do not believe in avoiding topics). With progressing after perhaps the most loquacious Personal Message section I have ever written, it is time to begin the review. While “Crazy” has, certainly, been making ladies and men going “Crazy” over their new song, in truth, this is one of 4Minute’s weaker releases. Although I do biasedly adore the concept, and in some aspects, the song itself as well, when deconstructing the song in a systematic fashion, “Crazy,” in reality, is not too solid at all. In my case, it certainly drives me “Crazy.”

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Song Total Score: 5/10 (4.6/10 raw score)

– Vocals: 6/10 – The vocals in this song are inconsistent, but not in a negative implication; rapping sections and plain singing sections are distinctively different. Although their past song of “Whatcha Doin’ Today” possessed both singing and rapping, the two styles were still akin, yet in “Crazy,” that is not the case. Nevertheless, despite the disparity that exists in the current song, on the structural level, the contrast provided augments the song. Rapping sections possess more of their ferocity and power, and in opposite, the singing that does occur comes off as exceptionally melodic and soft. Diversity and proper contrast exists due to the differences. In terms of whether the vocals are sound mechanically, yes, vocals are indeed a form of sound the skills from the ladies prove to be excellent. Gayoon and Sohyun provided excellent singing that showcased excellent melody, and especially with Gayoon, power. For the rappers, Hyuna and Jiyoon continue their streak of being a highly talented rapping duo; both ladies unveiled fantastic pacing, melody, and to fit the tone of “Crazy,” a heavy, strong and impactful presence is given. Now, while the rapping and singing are solid, exceptionally prominent issues exist: the vocals at the choruses, and for those who noticed the missing member, Jihyun’s part, are not too solid. Firstly, the choruses possess very chaotic vocals (more in-depth later), let alone the layout itself. As for Jihyun, while in the past solid vocals have been disclosed, for what is presented in “Crazy,” her part remains lacking in a multitude of perspectives, though specifically with the vocals, the singing is extremely lacking.

Overall, the vocals hold at only slightly above average. Individually, excluding Jiyoon, every member offers outstanding vocals. However, when factoring in the choruses, a major component of the song, and Jihyun’s weaker bridge, the score will be lowered.

– Song Structure: 5/10 (4.86/10 raw score)

The song goes in this structure and order:

Introduction, Rap, Verse, Pre-Chorus, Chorus, Rap, Verse, Pre-Chorus, Chorus, Bridge, Conclusion (Chorus)

1. Introduction: 5/10 – Hyuna and Jiyoon handle the introduction.

Conceptually, the introduction is solid. Ignoring that side, however, in terms of how it sounds, the introduction does suffer significantly. Firstly, in terms of the concept and layout, the rate at which it developed is suiting; the introduction hastily sets up the song’s overall energetic state, and thus, boldness becomes reiterated. Additionally, the “Crazy” concept is further constructed via Hyuna’s and Jiyoon’s lines. Both members neither sing or rap, but rather, they simply offer statements. Due to a more upfront approach, the concept itself is further developed in terms of boldness, confidence, and such. Focusing on the musical side, while the introduction perfectly sets the atmosphere for the song, the downfall, unfortunately, is seen by the lack of a more enticing musical aspect. Vocally, the duo’s lines are not captivating due to being regular spoken lines versus sung or rapped ones. For the instrumental, it remains equally dull; a lighter beat is utilized and its rate progressively quickens, but nothing else occurs beyond that. Furthermore, the beats themselves were not appealing.

Overall, average will be the score. The structure is efficient and excellent, but when accounting for what is sacrificed to grant that structure, the introduction results poorly and becomes heavily one-sided. An introduction should be mechanically and structurally captivating, but in “Crazy” ‘s case, solely the structure holds.

2. Rap: 6/10 – As expected, the ladies of Hyuna and Jiyoon handle the rapping sections. Hyuna is responsible for the first and Jiyoon for the second. I will be accounting for both their raps.

Addressing the rapping sections’ sonic component, with the rappers being highly adept, minimal issues exist. With Hyuna’s rap specifically, it contains practically every main component to a solid rap; a rhythmic melody exists, a prominent presence is felt, and most promisingly, her pacing remains exceptionally fluent and hasty which, in long-term, complements the given melody. In terms of Hyuna’s rap layout, repetition is utilized. For 4 lines, similar ending exists, and while in general this would create staleness, due to the style of the rap, the opposite occurs: it is beneficial. Chemistry occurs between multiple aspects due to the repetition; with 4 nearly identical line endings, the same consistency there reflects the beats, and as a result, the sonic aspect is aided in that the melody carries an exceptionally rhymatic tune.

Swapping to Jiyoon’s rap, it unfortunately does falter in comparison to Hyuna’s. Addressing the positive side first, the structure of her rap is decent. Coming after the chorus, a relatively less energetic section, to provide a solid transition for the more energetic upcoming sections, Jiyoon’s rap would need to provide a proper escalation. In this case, it is successful. The instrumental and rap grant that escalation via quickening, light beats, and from the rap itself, a surge of power. Now, in terms of the rap’s own structure, it leans toward being plain. The alternation between Korean and English provide a layer of contrast, and towards the end, the names of locations allow heavier, slower pauses, but overall, nothing of the structure proves to be supportive towards the rap’s biggest flaw: its sonic aspect. Unlike Hyuna’s rap that excelled in this category, Jiyoon’s rapping, while skill is blatantly disclosed, fails to be infatuating. Power is the rap’s sole strong point, but even then, it is the catalyst for why the rap is poorer; excessive emphasis placed on being impactful drains every other component of the rap: the flow could have significantly been smoother, the pacing could have hastened to reciprocate the instrumental’s beats, and more pressingly, the melody lacked. Despite impressive power given, when lacking these other crucial factors, the rap as a whole suffers.

Overall, with Hyuna’s rap holding an 7 and Jiyoon’s being a 5, averaging the two will result in a 6. Therefore, slightly above average will still be the score for the rap sections in summary. Though both ladies possess a high level of rapping talent, Jiyoon’s part will impair the score, but at least in opposite, Hyuna’s rap compensates slightly.

3. Verse: 6/10 – Sohyun is responsible for the two verses in “Crazy.”

Focusing on the verses’ sound, as the recurring statement seems to be, the individual skill appears, however, the sound itself is not too solid once multiple layers are accounted. Sohyun’s singing follows a higher pitched and melodic style. In fact, even some fragments of power are added. Now, while her tune is not necessarily negative, her singing lacks depth; the same melody is recycled for a total of 3, and even with the break that occurs near the middle, that varying line does not redeem the lack of diversity, and further, the varying line itself sounds poor sonically as it is moreover a statement than singing. Peering at the verses from a structural lens, the mechanical singing lacking variety might derive from the structure; homogenous to the singing lacking variety, the structure follows suit. The first two and final lines are practically identical, and thus, the only differing line occurs towards the middle. Unlike Hyuna’s rap that benefits from repetition, such as amplified power and flow, in the verses’ case, the opposite holds true: due to a slower and melodic approach, repetition drags out the verses’ tune rather than augmenting it.

Overall, slightly above average will hold as the score. Sohyun’s singing is not bad, and in certain ways, it is rather delightful, but once the lack of variety, both mechanically and structurally, is accounted for, the section does languish.

4. Pre-Chorus: 7/10 – Gayoon handles both the pre-choruses.

Being 4Minute’s main vocalist, Gayoon proves why she possesses that role. Mechanically, the pre-choruses are definitely respectable. Gayoon’s vocals showcase many layers: a fluctuating and pleasing melody, a slightly diverse range of notes, and adding on, stunning power. Being more specific, for the melody, unlike prior sections such as the rap and even the verse where the melodies remained relatively stagnant, during the pre-choruses, the tune remains dynamic; every line possessed its own melody and no recycling of melodies occurred. As for the notes, similar to the melody, the range of utilized pitches remain equally diverse; lower notes are used initially, but much higher notes are heard towards the later part of the pre-choruses. In terms of power, Gayoon brings forth exceptionally impacting lines, though the true beauty resides moreover in the progression than in how her powerful lines themselves sound.

On that note, for the pre-choruses’ structure, it is effective, but it lacks in remaining unique. With the role of a pre-chorus, creating hype for the chorus is its standardized task. Although that goal is met, the executed method to do so is not efficient. Firstly, however, to elaborate on why its role is still satisfied, the progression can be seen as the main reason.. A gradual and natural pacing becomes manipulated to create hype; a slower, calmer start becomes accelerated due to the beats, and vocally, Gayoon’s singing contributes as it becomes more intense via more power and higher notes. Now, because of this structure, the build-up effect is felt, however, while it grants the desired outcome, the method is exceptionally mundane. Beats quickening and even the vocals following a linear path of increasing power are extremely basic procedures, and while it may be pleasing mechanically, especially with Gayoon’s singing, from a structural viewpoint, it is not enticing.  

Overall, due to the sheer musical component being exceptionally pleasing, despite the structural component remaining lacking and unembellished, the pre-choruses will still hold a score of above average.

5. Chorus: 3/10 – For the choruses, Hyuna handles the first and last, and Jiyoon the second.

The choruses, admittedly, accomplish their goals from the concept’s perspective; the “Crazy” theme is definitely given, and more accurately phrased, ingrained into listeners. Ignoring that piece and focusing on the more important parts of mechanical and structural, both parties are heavily defective. For the chorus’ structure, though initial moments vary from the main body of the chorus, it is practically solely one line repeated: “Like you’re crazy” (but in Korean). Attempts to create variety is seen towards the beginning, but with that remaining nearly identical to the main body, minus spelling out “crazy” letter by letter, it still fails. Furthermore, considering the choruses run at a relatively sluggish rate, with the same key phrase repeating 7 times in that pacing, it becomes significantly dragged out, and thus, even more vexing. Regarding the sonic piece, no stellar singing or rapping occurred; in fact, no singing or rapping occurred at all. The choruses are conducted as simple speech, though an aggressive and bold nature are added to suit the atmosphere. Nevertheless, while lacking musically-orientated vocals is not directly bad (in certain cases, not singing is extremely effective), for how “Crazy” functions during the choruses, being bereft of those vocals is costly. Poor vocals are hauled for an excessive, tedious amount of time, and to add onto the disaster, the instrumental further taints the section. Incongruous to the pre-chorus’ instrumental of being graceful and tuneful, the pure opposite occurs; when the chorus arrives, it dissipates into dissonance. The utilized instruments sound horrendous, and overall, an extremely incoherent and chaotic vibe is given.

Due to the choruses failing in both categories of structure and sound, a low score will be given. Below average will be the rating. From what I recall, this may be the first song that I reviewed in which a very low score was given. It is unfortunate, but following protocols, it is the score.    

6. Bridge: 3/10 – If the choruses were not erroneous enough for a section, the bridge, sadly, also contributes. Jihyun is in charge of it.

The bridge remains closely related to the chorus; many issues that arose during the choruses return. For example, in focus of the structure, repetition and a lagging pace, a highly threatening combo if not properly carried out, roam the bridge. Initial moments are 4 identical lines, though there are some minimal deviations between the lines. Towards the later half, the lines do change, but nevertheless, the same format and repetition, overall, exists. Factoring in the slower pace, the exact issue at the chorus appears once more; very similar lines, sung in a lifeless manner, are recycled and repeated for a lengthy duration. On the subject of lifeless singing, firstly, while the instrumental does lose its chaotic nature in comparison to the chorus, it remains equally dull as the singing. Jihyun’s vocals, while they are truthfully solid as seen in their previous song of “Whatcha Doin’ Today,” in their current comeback, they definitely waver. Her singing is as if she were hypnotized; the melody is monotonous, the pitch does not fluctuate, and even the quickened pacing towards the end is miniscule. On the positive side, while her singing style connects to the “Crazy” theme, in a musical standpoint, it offers no beneficial contribution.

Overall, similar to the choruses, the bridge fails in both categories of how it mechanically sounds, and how it is structurally laid out. Below average will make a return.  

7. Conclusion (Chorus): 4/10 – The final chorus is by Hyuna.

An interesting case does exist with the chorus being the conclusion. For one, structurally, with the mindset of a conclusion, it does work, but considering how poor the choruses are, the score will still be negatively impacted. On topic with the strength of the conclusion, with the chorus being reused, a final impression is, with pure, undeniable certainty, left with listeners; the “Like you’re crazy” line will remain lingering. Furthermore, the overall theme of “Crazy” is reiterated once more, and in that regard, more contribution towards leaving remnants of the song. Now, while the chorus serves well in the role of a conclusion, it is still the chorus, and as a result, a mediocre section. On the sole basis of it being the chorus and how weak the section is, the conclusion indirectly suffers.

Perhaps if the final chorus had some positive variations from the rest, a higher score would be possible. For now, however, slightly below average will be the score.

– Line Distribution: 5/10 – With 5 members in 4Minute, a high score should be automatically earned. Though I honestly forgot how their previous song held in terms of the distribution, I have high expectations.

For 4Minute’s leader, Jihyun’s moment includes solely the bridge. Though opinions regarding it will vary, it is unequivocal that it is the only section she handled. This may prove to be an issue depending on the rest of the members, but considering it is solely one section, concerns do arise.

Gayoon’s spotlight exists in the 2 pre-choruses. With the current trend of every member possessing her own section (chorus, verse, etc.), this may end up working perfectly. As of now, no issues.

Jiyoon’s distribution may be concerning; she is responsible for some of the introduction, bits of the first and final chorus and the main body of the second chorus, and lastly, her own rap section. In total, 5 sections are covered, though realistically, it comes down to 3 as practically only 1 chorus was covered. Numerically, it is slightly higher than Jihyun’s and Gayoon’s, and considering she handled the introduction, chorus, and rap, she had more variety than the prior two members. As a result, slightly dominating may the rating, though it depends on the following members.

In Hyuna’s case, it appears to be exceptionally close to Jiyoon’s; the first half of the introduction, a rap, and 2 choruses with bits in another are her share. Totaling up the number, she has 5 sections, like Jiyoon, but considering one chorus is negligible, the final is about 4. Unfortunately, a disparity is seen, and coincidentally, chronologically as well (1, 2, 3, 4 sections is the current members’ order). This will be considered slightly excessive unless if Sohyun modifies the trend.

The youngest lady in 4Minute, Sohyun, covers solely the two verses. Likewise with Gayoon, she possesses 2 sections. Now that every member is disclosed with their number, a proper gauge can be made, and sadly, Sohyun is lacking slightly.

Jihyun significantly lacks as she holds solely 1, and Gayoon and Sohyun follow closely with only 2 sections. Jiyoon and Hyuna are slightly dominating, both with 3 and 4 respectively. As a result, the score will be lowered. Although it is understandable on why the distributions are in this fashion (based on group roles; every members’ section correlates to their singing position, such as rapping, main vocalist, or support vocalist), the grading will still follow through unbiasedly. At the very least, it is admirable that every member does possess their own section label, such as Jihyun with the bridge, Gayoon with all the pre-choruses, but due to the quantity disparity, the score will be held as average.

– Instrumental: 4/10 – The soundtrack for “Crazy” has potential, but due to how certain sections play out, the soundtrack does become affected. Specifically, negatively. Positive aspects are mainly the connections between vocals and instrumental; every section had a proper instrumental, regardless of whether it sounded pleasant on a mechanical level. Examples are blatant at the rapping sections, pre-choruses, and even choruses. During the chorus, for example, the vocals are synced up to in both style and the bolder approach. For the pre-choruses, Gayoon’s graceful singing is reflected with a soundtrack that, like the singing, is equally light and melodic. In terms of where the instrumental falls short, the choruses drain its potential. Every other section, such as the rapping sections, verse, and even introduction, had a soundtrack that was relatively appealing; it was either melodic and suiting to vocals, or more prominent via providing a heavy bassline and beats. When the choruses arrive, all the mechanically pleasing aspects disappear. The used sounds are chaotic, annoying, and though it suits the theme of “Crazy,” it does not quite correlate to the choruses’ vocals, even if the singing, or lack thereof, is poorer.  

Below average will be the score. The choruses, and in fact, even the bridge, are sections that degrade the song in multiple ways. In the instance of the instrumental, it is negatively impacted.

– Meaning: 3/10 – In truth, with the title of “Crazy” and the style of the song, I am expecting very minimal meaning. However, in a more optimistic setting, the meaning behind “Crazy” could be that someone went “crazy” after an incident related to love, be it separating or beginning it. To end the speculations, these lyrics will, hopefully, provide an interesting story. As always, the Korean-to-English translated lyrics are not 100% accurate, but the general idea should stay:

Yeah, I’m the female monster
You know that
Everybody, let’s get crazy right now
Le’ go

People around me call me crazy
You’re looking at me and calling me crazy too
I understand, I think I’m a bit crazy too
I dance to the rhythm
like I’m crazy

Once I go somewhere, people go crazy here and there
The deeper the night gets, we all get crazy
The answer is already there, you’re just okay
Just like that, you and me, go crazy

Don’t make yourself lonely anymore
Find your hidden self
in the world before you tonight
Go crazy, scream, enjoy it
The night is passing
so everyone jump and shake it

Look at me and go crazy
(C.R.A.Z.Y) Follow me
(C.R.A.Z.Y) Everyone go crazy
Like you’re crazy, yeah, like you’re crazy
Like you’re a bit crazier
Like you’re crazy
Like you’re crazy, like you’re already crazy
Like you’re crazy for me right now,
everyone, everyone, go crazy

I’m the crazy girl around here like gossip girl
If you can’t believe me, call me,
hey, call my boyfriend
You can’t come up to my class, I go crazy wherever I go
New York, Paris, Milano, Tokyo, London

Once I decide, people go crazy here and there
When this body passes, everyone goes crazy
The answer is already there, you’re just okay
Just like that, you and me, go crazy

Don’t make yourself lonely anymore
Find your hidden self
in the world before you tonight
Go crazy, scream, enjoy it
The night is passing
so everyone jump and shake it

Look at me and go crazy
(C.R.A.Z.Y) Follow me
(C.R.A.Z.Y) Everyone go crazy
Like you’re crazy, yeah, like you’re crazy
Like you’re a bit crazier
Like you’re crazy
Like you’re crazy, like you’re already crazy
Like you’re crazy for me right now,
everyone, everyone, go crazy

You’re crazy for me, just trust me
Go crazy for me
Trust yourself to me, just trust me
Trust yourself to me
Don’t ask anything and play with me
Just follow me for today
Just follow me for today and pretend to be crazy

Look at me and go crazy
(C.R.A.Z.Y) Follow me
(C.R.A.Z.Y) Everyone go crazy
Like you’re crazy, yeah, like you’re crazy
Like you’re a bit crazier
Like you’re crazy
Like you’re crazy, like you’re already crazy
Like you’re crazy for me right now,
everyone, everyone, go crazy

Speechless as I may be, the more pessimistic view comes to life. “Crazy” depicts a “crazy girl” (though “crazy lady” if we want to be nitpicky) who is, absurdly, simply encouraging others to go “crazy.” The main character seems to be “[called]…crazy,” though it is seemingly moreover a non-literal label. She appears to instill craziness into others as she encourages others to “go crazy, scream, enjoy it.” In truth, I do not comprehend the lyrics. A “crazy” lady is encouraging others to “follow [her]” with being so, and what being crazy might symbolize could be partying, living life in a positive, stress-free manner, and more. Nevertheless, in terms of rating the lyrics, considering the lack of details, confusing points, and practically a lack of a story, a lower score will have to be given. Below average will unfortunately hold. “Crazy” does, on the positive side, live up to its name in terms of the lyrics’ blatant meaning.

In terms of the “Critical Corner,” although the lyrics are, in truth, worthless in terms of analyzing it from a standard musical perspective, I do find some more deeper implications when viewing it outside of such. Tying back my huge digression earlier at the very beginning of this review, it can be seen on why this song is well received by females. The lyrics, though blatantly are meaningless, are actually rather empowering for females. “Crazy” does not necessarily mean insanity, from a literal or non-literal perspective, but rather, it could potentially address what females could indeed be labeled should they step outside androcentric societies’ boundaries. Though a more common term is one I absolutely refuse to use, I encourage readers to ponder a moment about the following scenario: A lady is highly confident, and it is to the degree in which she is willing to label herself a “female monster.” However, rather than being a monster in terms of creatures and beasts, she is simply a monster with a talent, such as dancing; after all, perhaps the lady “[dances] to the rhythm like [she’s] crazy.” Now, with her level of confidence and talent, some “people around [her] call[ her] crazy,” or for a more connecting label, perhaps the word that females are often labeled as if they are perceived as rude. Despite these remarks, however, the “female monster” lady decides to ignore them, and in fact, encourages others to do so as well; “don’t make yourself lonely anymore” might not signify relationships, but rather, the emotion itself. If a person’s life is filled with constant negative remarks, loneliness does indeed take place, and with the lady combating that, she is encouraging others to ignore those comments. Anyhow, overall, with a more critical perspective to the lyrics, the message could be more than the musical interpretation that it is simply nothing. A more in-depth glance could showcase that the lyrics are indeed encouraging females (and males) to ignore the people and even society that are against them, and that despite all the negativity, continuing to keep going “crazy,” whether that is in the form of a job, a hobby, a talent, or whatever, should occur. Now unfortunately, even though this interpretation is vastly more meaningful than the earlier, to be fair and consistent with my reviews, the grade for the Meaning is based on the more standard, musical and blatant layer. Nevertheless, I encourage readers to take their own approach to the lyrics.

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Choreography Score: 6/10 – In terms of the choreography for “Crazy,” with most dances breaking down into syncing and key points, in this song’s case, the latter is where it remains lacking while the prior flourishes. Firstly, in terms of the syncing, despite the weaker audio of “Crazy,” the syncing between the song and movements are incredibly accurate and precise. Beats are matched up with snaps and similar maneuvers, and for moments that are more melody-based, the flow from the song is reflected by actual flowing movements. The chorus at the start, for example, has hand motions to reflect the section’s overall flow at the beginning. Switching to the weaker component of the dance, the syncing may be accurate, but for what is executed as a dance move is not as solid. Many key points are weak, and in many, if not all sections, they are purely average in terms of used dance moves.

Due to the unique split of extremely methodical syncing versus average key points, the choreography will hold as slightly above average. While syncing is a major component, if the dance itself is not appealing, no amount of syncing can utterly redeem it. Nevertheless, the key points were not necessarily bad, and with solid syncing, the choreography holds decently.   

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Overall Score: 6/10 (5.5/10 raw score) – With averaging out 5 and 6 and rounding up, 6 will be the Overall Score. That said, 4Minute’s recent comeback of “Crazy” finishes with a 6, and that indicates slightly above average. Personally, while I do adore the 5 ladies, and in fact, I have finally recently finished the very last episode to Hyuna’s reality show of “Hyuna’s Free Month” (and no, I did not cry, though admittedly I slightly teared up when Hyuna did and even when she did cry, I only teared up decently more), their recent comeback is not too solid in terms of the song itself. As a concept, I am in full support, and additionally, I hope that 4Minute continues it. However, even with this concept, in the future, I hope for a more solid song. But, of course, feel free to disagree with my current take on “Crazy.” In many ways, I hope readers do; a review is simply an author’s perspective to whatever they are reviewing, and thus, it is not a strict, unmalleable and objective fact.

As I always say, thank you very much for reading. I have been slacking a decent amount, but with work coming in gradually yet surely, I have even less time for reviewing songs. Nevertheless, I will always invest time for readers, and in this review’s case, I am running past my sleep in order to finish it for March. For this month, due to upcoming album reviews, hitting at least the 5 review mark should be plausible, and as stated in my February 2015 reflection, I should have a lot more free time later in the month. Anyhow, thank you very much for reading this review. Regardless of agreeing or disagreeing or wanting to harm my physical being for my ratings, I hope it instills some thoughts about 4Minute’s song (and the other mentioned subjects brought up).

For upcoming reviews, with a new month beginning, I have a very popular solo as my next one, and after that, two album reviews. Now after that, a few songs are in mind, and after checking some K-Pop related news, it appears that many groups, especially the less popular ones, are making comebacks during March. Due to that, I will attempt to cover a few.

With this being the end, thank you once more. Although “people around me call me crazy,” I hope “you’re looking at me and” not “calling me crazy too.” However, “I understand, I think I’m a bit crazy too,” and while I may not “dance to the rhythm like I’m crazy,” at least I can claim I write like I’m crazy. Now unfortunately, this “crazy” might indeed be reckless, incoherent writing, but ignoring that and with a mindset of improving, I am not worried. Stay tuned for an upcoming review on Amber’s recent solo of “Shake That Brass.” Like this review, it should prove to be insightful. Keep checking back for it.

Blog Reflection: February 2015

Posted on February 28, 2015

Perhaps in the future I will be exponentially more organized, and thus, have more time to create a proper reflection (and to actually create a consistent format for my monthly reflections). Anyhow, I am preemptively writing this. 4Minute’s “Crazy” is currently being reviewed, and while I have high certainty on it being published as a part of February, I will be safe and write this reflection prior to that. As a result, depending on the review’s progress, these words may or may not be inaccurate. If it is late, I will simply shift the review over to March (which will humorously be at midnight, and thus, the next day but in reality solely a few minutes after posting this)

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That said, I will quickly do a reflection over my blog. Firstly, as I unfortunately always have to address (and at this point I feel rather guilty and “empty-wording”/”lip-servicing,” or whatever the term is), the rate of my reviews is not what I desire. I feel that at least 6 reviews should be possible per month, but considering workload and other factors (such as, interestingly, reviews are much lengthier than in the past, which may or may not be good), I hope readers are forgiving and can accept my current schedule of weekly reviews. Nevertheless, towards the middle or the end of March, I will gain an incredibly large amount of free time (about 2 to 3 hours per day), and this will significantly help with school work and, of course, giving more time for reviews. For those highly curious on why that is the case, I have decided that I will retire from the other activity I do besides school and music reviews, and that is my E-Sports activity. Once that time arrives, I could perhaps write about my experiences with it and answer the big question a few readers have asked of whether it is worth it or not (and why I am deciding to quit, to address that, it is mainly due to time and losing interest; more in-depth in the future post). Anyhow, more will be on that later once it does arrive.

On topic with the blog reflection, to address other technical aspects before diving into reviews themselves, I will, after a long time, list my current total view amount: 2,738. Glancing back at my November 2014 reflection, 1,010 was the total, so statistical growth is seen. Nevertheless, I find view counts miniscule and, overall, completely irrelevant. As I have said before, quality of this blog is what I desire to focus on, not popularity.

Now transitioning to what does matter, I want to address how current reviews are. Firstly, I will bring back some variety for my reviews in terms of what I review; rather than solely songs, a few readers have claimed that other reviews are interesting and should not be left, such as album and show reviews (and one that was brought up a while back, music video reviews). Due to that, I will be bringing back album reviews, or more accurately phrased, starting them as I have only done one. I have two albums in mind already for review. As for show reviews, I have yet to stumble upon a show to review (most of what I’m currently watching are actually radio interviews for some reason). If I encounter one and if time is plentiful, I will consider making another show review. As for music video reviews, I am surprised that no reader or myself have considered that until lately. I will ponder over this, but in truth, due to lack of experience with rating and breaking apart visual mediums in terms of quality (I can potentially argue on whether a music video is “offensive,” but not necessarily on if a music video is “good”), this may be avoided.

In terms of how my standard song reviews are holding, I can claim the analytic work has improved, and my writing in an organizational sense has as well. The Song Structure component to my reviews are finally, after a long, too long, time, consistent. A huge issue in the past is that the Song Structure (after my current review, it will actually take on a more accurate label) piece was rather incoherent. Though the general idea stuck of critiquing and analyzing one section of a song (chorus, verse, etc.), the idea and method in which I deconstructed a section was not consistent per review. There have been reviews where I would talk of the strengths and ignore the weakness, and vice-versa with overly focusing on the bad and completely shutting out the good. Furthermore, the way I broke apart a section to find aspects to discuss was irregular; there were moments where I would discuss solely the singing, occasions of singing and instrumental, or instances of purely focusing on the section’s layout and functionality. Now recently, I have figured out a solution: mechanical and structural. Overall, those two aspects are the main components to a song’s section. For example, when glancing at a chorus, I am able to divide into those two categories. For the mechanical aspect, solely how it sounds is the focus, nothing else. This includes the singing, the instrumental, or sometimes solely one will be focused on if the other is miniscule. As for the structural perspective, this takes into sight the section’s layout and, as stated, its structure; the variations of lines (not to be confused with variations of melody; that is a part of mechanical), how well it suits the song as a whole, whether it serves its role (such as introducing or concluding as a song as a whole). Of course, there is no proper, procedural way to deconstruct a song. The main point, however, is that with a review, consistency needs to exist, and finally, that form of consistency is finally appearing. Nevertheless, I will need to keep looking for ways to improve my reviews and writing.

On the subject of writing, I will not dive into too much depth as the previous topic is what I truly wanted to reflect on, but addressing my writing, I still find it on the weaker side. Though it has certainly improved when juxtaposed to archived reviews, I am still attempting to improve the quality of my writing itself. My analysis of songs may have improved, but unless if I have the ability to properly articulate my analysis and argument, it will all be in vain. As a result, I am constantly attempting to improve it via reading other works, be it books or other reviews, and what I personally find effective, reflecting over what could have been better. After every review, although I do not read them after publishing (though in the far future, I may occasionally reflect back on one), I still take a few moments to ponder over what could have been better in terms of my writing. Perhaps better fluency and explanation at one point, or to identify a section that had stalled a while and required intenser thinking so that I could pinpoint why that was the case (analysis-related, or maybe it was due to struggling with phrasing a sentence). If I did truly want to be more efficient with reviews and improving my writing for them, I would invest time to thoroughly read through every review in order to find points of improvement (on the positive side, with academic works, I do go through with this process). Overall, time and investing additional time will be necessary if I want to see a bigger growth in writing.

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With this being the end, I want to say, as always, thank you for reading. I appreciate your time. I cannot express the gratitude I feel, so creating additional reviews will be how I show it. March 2015 should be slightly more improved in terms of my current rate, but the exact date of when my time is freed is still vague. Album reviews and standard song reviews will happen for March. Stay tuned, and keep checking back.