Quarter One Review: Jan – March

Here is the first of my new review posts! Rather than review 10 videos each month, for 2017 I will be reviewing 10 videos for each quarter of the year. This time, we’re focusing on videos that were released during January, February, and March of 2017. Let’s get started~

Niel “Love Affair

quarter1niel

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

This is a pretty beautiful video. While singing a desperate love song, we watch a breathtaking interpretive dance by Niel. Often times, I will say that it is difficult to stay entertained by a solo dance without any backup dancers, and yet I found myself unable to look away during the dance scenes. The video had a nice buildup, beginning with just Niel dancing alone, then images of Niel and the girl apart surrounded by dance scenes with backup dancers, and then scenes focused on Niel and the girl together. The sets were beautiful and the song was done very well. I love that they got a female rapper in a male artist’s solo. I feel that doesn’t happen very often.

Overall Final Score: 4.3/5

Seohyun “Don’t Say No

quarter1seohyun

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

In this solo debut, Seohyun becomes a flawless queen…who will kill you through cooking. Different from her fellow members who had solos, Seohyun stayed true to her Girls’ Generation roots by including all of the glamour of their music videos. Throughout all of her outfit changes, Seohyun is seen preparing food with chains and nails to serve to the guy. It’s the “fun” video, but the way she so seriously takes everything gives the video an unexpected edge. While many of the outfits are pretty, the main outfits in the dance scenes are a little strange. I can’t help but think of bird cages when I see them. I was also, unfortunately, disappointed with the dance. Seohyun comes from one of the best girl dance groups (in my opinion), and so I was definitely expecting something a bit more active and dynamic.

Overall Final Score: 3.5/5

CLC “Hobgoblin

quarter1hobgoblin

  • Song: 4.5/5
  • Cinematography: 3/5
  • Wardrobe: 2/5
  • Dance: 4/5

This video grabs my attention. I barely knew who CLC was, but then I decided to give this song a listen, and I was instantly hooked. The video is exciting, with a very bouncy and dynamic dance. I was pretty surprised at CLC’s ability to pull off a harder song. I had thought them to be a more cutesy, “pretty” group. The transition in the dance and song when the melody slows down is done really well and overall the video is fun, though could have had more focused direction. My qualms are mostly with the wardrobe. I’ve tried to be as forgiving as possible  with this wardrobe, but I just can’t spin it in a way where it looks anything but messy. I understand “styled” mismatched clothes, but the variety in this wardrobe is just too much for my eyes to handle.

Overall Final Score: 3.4/5

BTS “Spring Day

quarter1springday

  • Song: 5/5
  • Story: 4.5/5
  • Cinematography: 4.9/5
  • Wardrobe: 4/5

You know those songs that put you to tears because of how beautiful they are? That’s the effect Spring Day had on me. This is such a beautiful song and video. Similar to I Need U, it reinforces the message that while we feel alone in our struggles, the struggle is a means through which we can find connectedness with others. Throughout the video, Jungkook travels on a train, watching  all of the things passing him, thinking about how alone he is. Then at the end of the video, he looks up and sees all the other members looking out the window doing the exact same thing. He then realizes that he is not alone at all. The video captures this concept so beautifully, and I am sure that there are even deeper meanings one can take from the story that I haven’t perceived yet.

Overall Final Score: 4.6/5

BTS “Not Today

ntd9

  • Song: 4.5/5
  • Story: 4/5
  • Cinematography: 4.9/5
  • Wardrobe: 5/5
  • Dance: 4/5

“A day may come where we lose. But it is not today. Today we fight.” These were Rap Monster’s opening words in the song, and they are so perfectly exemplified in the video that follows. For the whole video, BTS demonstrates how they will keep fighting (and dancing) alone, with each other, surrounded by their assassins, through snow, through fire, during the day, and at night. The grandeur of this video is through the roof. I will say, however, that aside from the actual sets I do not see this video adding a whole lot to BTS’s career or the K-pop scene. The song is  nearly identical in pattern to Fire, and the story is also more or less the same. It is a really great video, but in most ways I would actually say that Fire did it better (aside from the scenery of course. That was just captivating).

Overall Final Score: 4.5/5

Twice “Knock Knock

quarter1twice

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

If you’ve been closely following this blog, you know that I haven’t caught on to this Twice craze. For some reason, I just can’t seem to get into their style. This video changed that. The song is unbelievably catchy with all of the fast repetition. The video is also really fun and interesting. The editing, with the movements being sped up and the split screen, fit very well with the feel of the song. The story is a bit of an emotional roller coaster, but their acting makes the whole thing full of charm. I am happy to say that this video really changed my opinion of Twice.

Sidenote: I guess I have a bias now too? I’m told her name is Mina. I can’t say exactly why, but I was immediately drawn to her.

Overall Final Score: 4.1/5

Taeyeon “Fine

quarter1taeyeon

  • Song: 4.5/5
  • Story: 4/5
  • Cinematography: 4.5/5
  • Wardrobe: 4.9/5

SM takes an artistic side I didn’t know they had with Taeyeon’s new video. Throughout the video, Taeyeon appears fed up with her significant other, and she expresses that through facial expressions, but then through writing. After thinking back to happy memories as a couple, she heads to her photography studio and changes the images of her relationship, literally portrayed on the screen of the video. Then as she analyzes her relationship more, she continues manipulating the images further until the guy’s face is almost completely removed. In addition to this vivid form of editing, the video comes with a stunning song. I think this song may be my favorite on this list.

Overall Final Score: 4.5/5

B.A.P “Wake Me Up

quarter1bap

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

Let’s address the song first. It’s pretty amazing. For the first time, I think B.A.P really utilized the strongest vocal abilities of every single member. Moving on to the video and story, it is a bit difficult to piece together. My takes is that there are all of these people who are in a daze, consumed by their thoughts, and after one man unsuccessfully calls for a wake up of their community, B.A.P arrives to fully wake everyone up with a rose. It’s deep and poetic, like their other recent videos. I am taking points off because it never is really clear what is actually going on, but in general I think it is a unique idea that was executed well.

Overall Final Score: 4.3/5

GOT7 “Never Ever

neverever1

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

If the whole video was what took place during those fast lines before each chorus, I would give this video a perfect score. There are a few moments in this video and song that are outstanding, but I just can’t help but feeling like there is something missing in the rest of it. The rooms are super sleek, and the outfits are also pretty great. It’s the chorus of song and the types of scenes that are included. They did something more minimalist with the instrumental, which sounds cool, but I definitely noticed the emptiness. The story also could have used some more context. Also, while I absolutely love everything about the aesthetics of Bambam’s solo scene, the whole gas mask part needs some more explanation.

Sidenote: Even as I was watching this in preparation for this post, I couldn’t get through it without suffering from the Youngjae Effect mentioned in my previous post. He was killing it!

Overall Final Score: 4/5

Highlight “Plz Don’t Be Sad

quarter1highlight

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

They’re back! The members of BEAST reconfigured themselves as the new group, Highlight, and released this song. While singing a song meant to cheer someone up, we watch the members go through sad situations, turn up the smile-meter, and then watch their situations transform into happier ones. With silly outfits and a lighthearted dance, they pull off a full concept meant to simply make others smile. While it is a fun and happy video, I do think it could have  been executed better. The members are naturally very silly, and they could have used a more candid concept. Alternatively, they could have taken the video more seriously and got outfits that were not simply bathrobes. They have a surface-level concept in this video, which is fine, but with just a little bit more something special could have been a really amazing video.

Overall Final Score: 3.4/5


Question of the Day:

What were your highlights from this first quarter of the year?


#NowPlaying: Now by Jongup. The release of this song will always be one of my favorite things to happen in K-pop. Every time this song comes up on my phone, I can’t help but blast all the volume and behold what is Jongup’s voice.


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

Advertisements

What are your thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s