July 2016 in Review

Better late than never, right? I’m not going to waste any time with explanations. Let’s get straight into the videos.

SEVENTEEN “Very Nice

july16nice

  • Song: 4/5
  • Story: 4/5
  • Cinematography: 4/5
  • Wardrobe: 4/5
  • Dance: 4.5/5

Seventeen’s strength has always been delivering the fun and energetic, and they definitely delivered with Very Nice. The fast-paced instrumental just demands attention, as does the super dynamic dance. What would have made the dance better would be a little more variety in what each member was doing. Each member performing the exact same moves does get boring after a while. Regardless, the video generally gives off good vibes as we see the different members struggling to approach their crush and then exploding into confetti from the excitement and anxiety of it all.

Overall Final Score: 4.1/5

Wonder Girls “Why So Lonely

july16lonely

  • Song: 3.5/5
  • Story: 4.5/5
  • Cinematography: 4.5/5
  • Wardrobe: 4/5

This video took me by a surprise. Both the song and video have a bitter nonchalance about it, which is very rare to see in a genre full of color and energy. It works for them. The song is nice and mellow while the video showcases how loneliness can take a toll on a relationship. Each of the members are stuck in a relationship with lifeless men, so they kidnap the man, terrorize him, and then force him to watch their lifeless performance. It is so perfectly ironic. It takes a certain mindset to get into this kind of concept, but once you’re in it, it’s gold. I also absolutely love the hair and makeup in this video.

Overall Final Score: 4.1/5

Pentagon “Young

july16young

  • Song: 3.9/5
  • Story: 4/5
  • Cinematography: 3.5/5
  • Wardrobe: 5/5
  • Dance: 4/5

This music video features the CUBE trainees getting ready to debut as PENTAGON. While singing and rapping about their youth, we see them parodying being on the show Show Me The Money 5. It was a clever idea to incorporate such a hot-topic show in their music video, and I think they pulled it off really well – granted I’ve only ever seen bits and pieces of one episode of the actual show. The dance, though short, suits the sound of the song well, and the sound itself is pretty captivating. The high-pitched “I’m still young” that reverberates throughout the chorus gets a little distracting, but the mix of rap and singing is impressive enough to leave me with a positive feeling while listening to the song. I am happy that it wasn’t just a rap song, and this video definitely makes me anticipate what we will see from PENTAGON when they officially debut.

Overall Final Score: 4.1/5

NCT 127 “Fire Truck

july16firetruck

  • Song: 4.5/5
  • Story: 4/5
  • Cinematography: 4.5/5
  • Wardrobe: 4/5
  • Dance: 4.5/5

To be honest, this video really deserves a full review. In the story, the boys of NCT 127 follow a girl throughout her life, being her fire truck, there to lighten the mood and bring excitement to her life. Once she is an old lady, they move on to her grandson and carry on the legacy. It’s strange, yet endearing. They show her growth in a very creative and intriguing way through the different scenes. Everything about the lighting and wardrobe fits the fun song. The bass can get a little strong at times, but this song is such a bop and makes me want nothing more than to bust out dancing. Mark is such a phenomenal rapper and the vocalists pleasantly surprised me in this. Don’t even get me started on the dance. There are so many innovative moves and forms. They do a particularly good job putting the focus on the person singing/rapping, and WinWin really shines during each of the dance breaks.

Overall Final Score: 4.3/5

J-Min x Shim Eun Ji “Way Back Home

july16waybackhome

  • Song: 4/5
  • Story: 3.9/5
  • Cinematography: 3.5/5
  • Wardrobe: 3.5/5

This song gets so motivation and triumphant as it progresses, and I’m not sure if that was intentional. Regardless, it is a pleasant song. The video features a girl going through life and realizing through different activities how alone she is without her partner. She longs to be with him, and by the end of the video, he finally gives her some attention, making all of her daydreams now seem possible. The story moves much slower than my summery suggests, but it is sweet in the end. The only problem is that the sweetness and meaning is lost until the very end of the video.

Overall Final Score: 3.7/5

Eric Nam “Can’t Help Myself

july16canthelpmyself

  • Song: 4/5
  • Story: 4/5
  • Cinematography: 4.5/5
  • Wardrobe: 4/5
  • Dance: 3/5

Eric Nam is so Eric Nam in this video. There are a few different themes going on here, so let me break them down for you. At some points, we see dorky Eric trying to woo his bus stop buddy, struggling in particular with learning magic tricks. In other scenes the two appear on a reality show together and secretly reveal to the camera their crushes on each other. In a third set of scenes – my personal favorite moments – we see dorky Eric dancing alone in a studio expressing his love for the girl through passionate singing and hilariously exaggerated dance moves. There are so many cute little moments hidden throughout this video that the whole thing is such a joy to watch. It is the cute and subtle humor that makes this video so charming. The video is sung nicely and perfect for summer. The dance… frankly I think the video would have been perfectly fine without the choreographed dance. What was with the hula dancing?! Why?

Overall Final Score: 3.9/5

FT Island “Take Me Now

july16takemenow

  • Song: 4.5/5
  • Story: 3/5
  • Cinematography: 3.9/5
  • Wardrobe: 2.5/5

This is one of those songs that tells a story through the very melody. The instrumental and passionate singing is so captivating. The video took a while for me to fully piece together. There is a little girl walking towards a mirror, and when she finally sees herself and throws a bouquet of flowers to it, she emerges as a grown woman. Is she destroying the little girl version of herself so that she can freely live as her mature self? If so, it’s a nice idea but some more scenes would have been very helpful in making the story clearer. For such an epic song, I was expecting a story with more depth.

Overall Final Score: 3.5/5

Heize (ft. DEAN & DJ Friz) “And July

july16heize

  • Song: 3.5/5
  • Story: 4/5
  • Cinematography: 4/5
  • Wardrobe: 5/5

Well, this isn’t a relationship you see every day in K-pop concepts. Heize and Dean play the roles of the bittersweet couple – two lovebirds who let fun and pranks characterize their relationship. While some of the pranks are a little extreme for two people who supposedly love each other, the concept is endearing because it really emphasizes the whole friendly competition that keeps their relationship alive. The song and colors set a classy, laid back tone. This is one of those foot-tapping and shoulder-shrugging songs. Perfect for a coffee shop.

Overall Final Score: 4.1/5

Zhoumi “What’s Your Number?

july16zhoumi

  • Song: 3/5
  • Story: 3.5/5
  • Cinematography: 4/5
  • Wardrobe: 2.5/5
  • Dance: 3/5

This video has a really nice concept; I just wish it was fleshed out more. Zhoumi spends the video trying to get the girl’s number, through a variety of communication methods, from smart phones to old block phones. After being rejected over and over again, Zhoumi’s persistence prevails and she accepts him in the end. The whole concept of a call center is so clever, and I wish more emphasis was put on this over the random scenes of colors and Zhoumi serenading the girl. I do admit myself slightly disappointed with this comeback though. SM is falling back into their cookie cutter patterns. The song, while it is fun, sounds too similar to other songs already released, and the concept of the video’s colors and editing is an almost exact replica of Red Velvet’s Dumb Dumb.

Sidenote: I’m such a bad Super Junior fan. I didn’t even know Zhoumi was coming back until I started putting this post together. 😥

Overall Final Score: 3.2/5

f(X) “All Mine

july16allmine

  • Song: 4/5
  • Cinematography: 4/5
  • Wardrobe: 4.9/5

SM has really been on the ball with these Station comebacks. This song has a really fun instrumental break. All four members sound so beautiful in this. We’ve all heard this type of song before, but f(X) pulls it off well nonetheless. The video is on the simpler side, featuring the four members self-cams after their SMTOWN concert, but it is by no means uninteresting. We really get to see who f(X) is through their different scenes. They each showcase their personalities, but we also get the treat of experiencing a bit of behind the scenes of SMTOWN shows. The only real fault I see with this video is Victoria’s scenes. I see significantly less effort in her scenes than the rest of them, which is a disappointment. Overall though, this is a fun video and I appreciate it despite the low budget.

Overall Final Score: 4.3/5

*wipes sweat* Finally. I did it. July videos have been posted. I am so sorry about the wait. August in Review is already in the works so hopefully you won’t have to wait too long this time. Thank you as always for bearing with me!


Question of the Day:

What was your favorite comeback from July?


#NowPlaying: Love Me Do by VIXX. This is taken from their newest album, and my jaw literally dropped when I heard it for the first time. VIXX has never had a song quite like this one, but it works so well for them, especially the main vocalists.


Wanna talk K-pop? Follow me on Twitter @mystification86!

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