Tuesday, March 27, 2012

First Take: Triple Shot of Big Bang

One of Korea's biggest boyband of the new century, Big Bang, just came out with a mini album, Alive. Okay, so it's been out for a while. And along with that album came out not one, not two, but three really interesting music videos. I will try my best to review all three. Considering that, please be patient with the length of this post. I'll try to keep it quick and painless.

The reason why it took me so long to review is because I seriously thought that they would release music videos for all six songs. But after a couple of weeks with no new release, I might as well start reviewing what's already released.

First song of the three is 'Blue'. And wow, what a great song this is. In the recent years, Big Bang has been gravitating towards electronic music so I'm really glad they decided to have this song. The song is very easy to listen to, very mellow, and rather quiet for a Big Bang song. Despite having some seriously fierce voices, this song managed to keep things on the down low. It might not be the perfect concert song, but it's one great song for a rainy afternoon. And hello, Seungri, you have grown! This song is probably the most perfect for Seungri. His chorus part is probably the best amongst all of them.

In the video, I think the boys are channeling their artsy, experimental souls.Set in the streets of NYC, there's not a particular plot to it, but it's not your run of the mill K-pop music video. After all, this is Big Bang. They don't go for run of the mill. But even for them, it's different. The colors are more gray and not so eye-burning as others. It's almost reminiscent to their earlier videos like 'Lies' or 'Haru Haru' with its muted gray tones. One thing I hate about the video, that girl. Not that I'm jealous or anything, but can't they at least find a girl that can, I don't know, act? I feel like she's only there to strike a pose, and stare into the members' soul with no luck. Come on, guys, you can find better girls than her.

I was super impressed with how Big Bang can manage to combine their fierce voices into one beautiful song. I'm pretty sure that there can only be a few songs like this, but I'm enjoying it to its fullest. I've never heard Big Bang as vulnerable as this, and I appreciate it fully.

The second song on this crazy triple shot is the smooth 'Bad Boy'. Yes, Big Bang came back to their roots! It's not exactly hip hop, but it's the closest thing they've been recently. Again, I really love how Big Bang is doing simpler things. There's no need for autotune or super bass or anything like that. This song also easily highlights the best of each members. They shined when they sang their parts. And I do love G-Dragon and T.O.P's rap-sing in the chorus.

The video is still set in the City of New York, but unlike 'Blue', they were on actual streets with the citizens running their everyday lives around them. But the fashion, oh boy, is a little too off beat. Not so sure of the concept there. And T.O.P's neon blue hair just stands out like a sore thumb. He's hot and could probably rock unicorn rainbow if he wants to, but it's not the best. And GD's hair, wow, I don't understand. Is that real hair? But unlike the previous music video, there's an actual dance that was put in the video, which I found very cool. Especially when T.O.P was just doing his thing, then suddenly his teammates joined him into song and dance in the middle of the street. So badass, I know.

Another more simple song from Big Bang proving they're not just over the top. They can prove smooth and simple. The instrumentals are simple but gets more complex the more you listen to it. The video is odd, especially the questionable fashion, but I love the coloration. Overall another solid song from the Alive album.

The last song is probably the most epic. 'Fantastic Baby' is so different than the two previous songs, I've heard even some V.I.P's, Big Bang's fan base, doesn't even like it. Well I do. The song is reminiscent to the recent dance track trend. This song is the continuation of Big Bang's recent obsession with electronica. It's the perfect song to dance to, and they become the kings of the song. Despite the electronic heavy characteristics of this song, Taeyang and Daesung successfully managed to show off their impressive vocals. This song is just so much fun. Boom shakalaka!

Similar to its song vibe, the video is also very different. Unlike the two previous videos, this song brings the boys off the streets and into a set. Each member has their own persona, with an overall feel of rebellion. But I have to say, GD's super long hair in the opening freaks me out a lot. I don't understand him anymore. The overall feel of the video actually feels like a 2NE1 video, which is disappointing. Even though they're label mates, they shouldn't copy each others' video concept. Don't go SM on me. It's not completely similar, but there's definitely similar elements. Maybe it's just me.

This song is definitely the most fun song out of the three. This song has actually became my unofficial morning walk to campus song. It's just the perfect song to get yourself pumped up in the morning. And seriously, it's such a fun song to dance to. Or at least bop your head to.

I'm so happy with these three songs. They're definitely a lot more epic than Big Bang's previous mini album, which felt hurried. This one feels well polished and put together perfectly. I haven't listened to the other three songs, but from what I've heard from these three, I'm sure the others will be just fine. Big Bang definitely left a bang in the K-pop world right now. So happy they're back.

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