Cherry Bullet (체리블렛) – Hands Up: MV Review

With various unfortunate incidents in K-Pop, we will be strict in MV reviews and dealings in this site.

In cases like this, the Japanese “zero-tolerance” approach will be implemented starting this year.


Let’s review for now Cherry Bullet, in their comeback Hands Up.

Storyline as whole

The storyline may be interpreted as follows: The girls are in IT research laboratory, doing experiments and research. In this process they are focused on reviewing blueprints and plans. Later on, they used the alley as their experiment place.

Let’s talk about their music. Hands Up utilizes very fast beats in music, and is more on moderate thumping beats and repetitions. Synths of a long chant is heard at the start, which then fades upon playing tunes a la detective. Clapping tunes are later on used along with fast raps at chorus.

While the music is slow, their raps are being maintained. These contrasting traits are mixed to make it equally exciting.

They changed their concept drastically – from being that of cutesy-type to mature ones similar to 3YE. And to make it different, some concepts are borrowed from their fellow underrated groups. Examples are the alley from 3YE’s Out of My Mind, and the lighting hall from EVERGLOW’s Adios.

Complaints list

Again, better for FNC not to debut another group.

What happened to Cherry Bullet clearly demonstrates gross negligence on agency’s part. While Kokoro has visa issues, she was not given chance to perform with the rest in Japanese tours. Linlin, on the other hand, “was seen with a fan outside her schedule, which is…not allowed.” Still, no constant updates, clarifications, or apologies from the agency after several months, till the two (plus Mirae) left.

These issues convinced me not to follow Cherry Bullet, and instead follow ITZY.

Major change

More than just review, we will look also on responses from groups and agencies. This is after all the incidents last 2019.

Starting this year, we will add another pull-down factor for every Cherry Bullet comeback, since FNC and the group did not fix this issue for several months. Twenty points are assigned for this. It will be their permanent feature in every review till their disbandment.

This criterion will apply to any group undergoing situations like this. Consequently, any agency doing this will be given a failing grade at year-end. Again, this is a strong reminder for K-Pop to take these issues seriously.

Further readings: TheBiasList | KPopReviewed

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 68.70%
Grade: F
Assessment: Failed

Scoreboard

Aspect Criterion Points Base
Storyline 9 10
Appearance 30 30
Music 10 10
Dance 10 10
Lessons 8 10
Entertainment 12 25
Other Factors Completeness of members 0 20

Rocket Punch (로켓펀치) – BOUNCY: MV Review

In our series of reviews, we will tackle again a rookie group called Rocket Punch, in their new song Bouncy.

This song is an attempt for them to stand out amidst so many comebacks this month. The question is: How will a Ketchy rate the group?

(Side Note: Being a Ketchy, all members are my favorites. Juri is my ultimate bias, and Dahyun is my bias wrecker.)

Storyline starts with girls in a room with make-up. As they play, they decide to buy some stuff in a supermarket. They later on don’t know what to do upon knowing that stocks have been depleted. It ends with the group having recollections with goods they bought

Sing and dance

This is the first time that I got startled with sounds at the beginning. Thought of it as if someone shouts at me outside, while it is otherwise.

Nothing different can be heard as the song transitions from first verse to the first part of chorus. Second part of chorus slows down, but is being uplifted by shouts. Overall, it is deemed as a stronger type compared to their debut lead track.

As compared with BIM BAM BUM, this new performance is harder to interpret. Even if I try to do so, it would be very hard for me to perform it complete.

Visuals

The visual aspect is worth nothing, with their improved appearance. In fact, Dahyun may be confused with ITZY’s Yeji. Meanwhile, special effects are used with Juri playing with arrows, and Dahyun throwing a bouncing ball that later explodes. Funny scene is at 1:33 where Yeonhee gets surprised by pile of goods scattered in front of her.

However, various improvements need to be considered: (1) 2:43 – 2:47 is unnecessary, as this can be bridged directly to the girl’s chants without unnecessary twist on voice; (2) Sohee’s very fast raps at 1:26, which the author deems to confuse the listener; and (3) the song must exclude the cheerleading aspect, and place the song directly to the energetic song till the end.

Somehow, this borrowing of strong girl crush concept is considered a step forward. We then wonder what else Rocket Punch will bring to us in the coming months.

Joketime

Bouncy reminds me of another song from TWICE:

Bouncy you, ooh
Nuga meonjeo johahamyeon eottae
Bouncy you, ooh
Jigeum neoegero gallae
Bouncy, ooh!

Further readings: TheBiasList | KPopReviewed

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 85.26%
Grade: B-
Assessment: Satisfactory

Scoreboard

Aspect Points Base
Storyline 9 10
Appearance 29 30
Music 9 10
Dance 8 10
Lessons 8 10
Entertainment 18 25
Other Factors    

EVERGLOW (에버글로우) – Dun Dun: MV Review

Reviews for Rocket Punch and Cherry Bullet will be released tomorrow.


For the second time we will review EVERGLOW in their recent comeback Dun Dun.

The rookie group last year made considerable strides. Even if this is considered as underrated group, they managed to be known in a short span of time. Let’s review what’s in their comeback:

I find the music very exciting. There’s a short, slow, chant of “Dun dun” before shouting again at the chorus. That’s another likeable aspect, as they are contrasting the sweetness of music with their strong chorus. Thumping sounds are heard, and these were rendered as mild.

Various symbolisms of Dun Dun can be seen here: a member floating in the sky, meteors shooting in most parts of the video, and time being swung. Summing up:

We are trying to reach our goals, but some of us fall on and dissipate without touching it. These we do as time is ticking against us.

For the visuals, some aspects are noticed: (1) They incorporate flags at their back, which they copied a bit from ATEEZ’ Wonderland, (2) Use of iconic Everglow whisper, and (3) members wandering on an icy place.

Only thing I disliked is on a member in a jail at 3:03 – 3:18. This can be deleted without any major effect on the MV.

Final notes

Everglow has its own charisma, noted in their performances. This they need to use it fully.

If preferred, this be ranked at par with Bon Bon Chocolat, and a step forward behind Adios. In that case they improved greatly in this lead track.

Further readings: TheBiasList | KPopReviewed

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 84.21%
Grade: C+
Assessment: Improving

Scoreboard

Aspect Points Base
Storyline 8 10
Appearance 30 30
Music 10 10
Dance 10 10
Lessons 6 10
Entertainment 16 25
Other Factors    

DKB (다크비) – Sorry Mama (미안해 엄마): MV Review

We will do a review of another boy group called DKB in their song Sorry Mama. For a little info, the group name is a shortened version of “Darkbee.” And they are under Brave Entertainment, which we reviewed their response last year.

At first glance, I find the title funny, as it can be related with a misheard lyric telling that “Sorry Mama, but I make a laundry.” But with Brave “catching up,” would their new group’s performance be worth all? Let’s see:

The storyline may be weaved as follows: A woman was watching over the boys through CCTVs. Fed up, the latter had to cut wires in order to stop it. This is being reinforced with their message that “Sorry, but I’ve had enough of you following me.”

As for the visuals, the boys were throwing guitar, breaking statues, and putting fire over artworks. These they do to express their disgust and desire to be free.

Some aspects need to be improved. For one, the chorus uses echoing tunes, but they should’ve used these noisy tunes to their advantage. Another aspect disliked is on howling “Sorry Mama” at the final chorus of video. Maybe they could find another way to integrate her voice without making an awful finale at end.

Final note

Judging from the way they handled Bigstar and Brave Girls, it’s not surprising if this turns to be another failure. And to put it bluntly, Brave wasted opportunities at this time where competition in K-Pop is now fiercer.

Further readings: TheBiasList

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 81.05%
Grade: C-
Assessment: Needs Improvement

Scoreboard

Aspect Points Base
Storyline 7 10
Appearance 30 30
Music 9 10
Dance 10 10
Lessons 7 10
Entertainment 14 25
Other Factors

BVNDIT (밴디트) – Cool: MV Review

We will touch on BVNDIT in their song Cool. This is their lead track for New.wav project, and is technically their soft comeback like Dramatic. Let’s see how a new Banditbul will review their latest track:

They clearly illustrated what “cool” is, that is being free and enjoying life.

This is their first performance with them featuring others, fully using the freestyle dance. With the visuals they displayed, they are making it more attractive than their previous lead tracks.

BVNDIT utilized special effects to make it different. As can be seen from their thumbnails, I find their filtered cropped faces at 0:24 – 0:28, 1:19 – 1:24, and 2:33 – 2:35 very funny. This is a very refreshing concept that is badly needed, considering that long-cliché concepts are being used in this genre.

Funny scenes

More funny scenes are noted in Cool: (1) 0:39 – 0:41 was funny when he peed, and someone puts a trash beside him; (2) 2:59 was on Yiyeon (?) serving as an outlier to a picture of girls standing upright; and (3) at 2:26 – 2:28, what’s supposed to be a monotonous dance was a bit of fun. Jungwoo out of curiosity leans back a bit to Seunghee (and what is she seeing in my ultimate bias?)

In these funny cases, they are living up to the cool concept they wish to impart.

Others

Mini-clanging sounds are used at start, then it is being joined by mild beats. At any rate, they maintained the light vibe throughout the whole song.

The music video as a whole is direct to the point, and is simplified to warrant a status at par with regular comebacks.

Further readings: TheBiasList | KPopReviewed

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 89.47%
Grade: B+
Assessment: Good

Scoreboard

Aspect Points Base
Storyline 9 10
Appearance 30 30
Music 9 10
Dance 10 10
Lessons 8 10
Entertainment 19 25
Other Factors

cignature (시그니처) – Nun Nu Nan Na (눈누난나): MV Review

As a way of helping underrated girl groups, we will focus on reviewing cignature.

For info, this is a reconfigured group out of some Good Day members, plus two new members. Continuities like this is highly favored. We will see what’s in store for the new group:

The storyline begins with a phone calling them to dance. Or that they are going to investigate a crime. Girls inside the room play as if they’re in a beach or in an airplane.

The concept at the start of the video mixes game concept, cute concepts, and mature concepts at the first 40 seconds. I find the stairs at 1:02 fascinating, as this reminds me of Televisa’s logo. Maybe they are telling us to watch over them?

For a bit of improvement, the scene at 1:30 – 1:34 may be deleted without any effect. Also, while the music was quite upbeat, I find it lacking. They should’ve added additional beats, or made the tempo faster. This had wasted any potential for them to elicit attention. Maybe add bumps or more memorable sounds?

Further improvement is on their storyline, still being written in Korean. What is the story they want to show us? When called, what something exciting will they do? How would their performance compensate for colorful and orderly sceneries? These things they have to remedy in their next comeback.

Further readings: TheBiasList | KPopReviewed

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 82.11%
Grade: C-
Assessment: Needs Improvement

Scoreboard

Aspect Points Base
Storyline 8 10
Appearance 30 30
Music 9 10
Dance 9 10
Lessons 8 10
Entertainment 14 25
Other Factors    

LOONA (이달의 소녀) – So What: MV Review

We will remove incentives to vids uploaded to 1theK starting with this review.

Stay tuned for reviews with EVERGLOW, cignature, and Rocket Punch.


For our another review, we will tackle on LOONA in their newest lead song So What. For a bit of info, this video is produced with help of Lee Sooman himself. The settings of their MV were shot at Thailand.

As this is the first time we review this group, let’s see what’s in store for all of us.

(Side Note: It saddens to know that Haseul is absent. Wishing her the best of health!)

The story tells of girls marching and showing their fierce moves. LOONA provided their storyline as follows:

[#] does not mean much when it is used alone, but it means that when # is used in combination with words or letters, they realize the result of a multi-use combination when they are together, just as they perform a special function or great ability.

Through this album, LOOΠΔ want people to break out of the box, boundaries and prejudices, showing them to not to be afraid to challenge yourself…

Digging slightly deeper, this message tells us that they are going outside the box. And they proved their point in the music video.

In this case they utilize swaggy concepts similar to ANS and ITZY. The group utilized some special effects to complement their message. This is apparent with shooting fire serving as meteors, and burning moon.

Musically it sounds similar to NATURE’s Oopsie (My Bad). Going further, mild marching tunes are heard at start, then added some beats at the second part. The blobbing tune is added to the chorus, but is not predominant.

Some positive points are noted: (1) The slowdown was rendered in a way not dragging the song’s momentum, (2) the group fully utilized the shouts and raps to fuel the energy required in the song, (3) So What hook not too irritating, (4) sustained final build-up, and (5) their deeply-thought dance steps.

Most important of all, the story has its post-credit scene, with burning feathers. Apparently, they included Haseul in the MV albeit absent.

Further readings: TheBiasList | KPopReviewed

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 91.58%
Grade: A-
Assessment: Very Good

Scoreboard

Aspect Points Base
Storyline 10 10
Appearance 29 30
Music 10 10
Dance 10 10
Lessons 10 10
Entertainment 18 25
Other Factors

iKON – Dive (뛰어들게): MV Review

For the first time we will review iKON in their lead track Dive. This recent comeback is their first since Hanbin left the group.

Earlier, we ranked various groups under hiatus for at least six months, the group included. In fact, it has been 395 days since their last release I’m OK. Would iKON’s comeback be worth all the lost time and B.I.’s departure? We’ll see here.

As explained, the album title “i DECIDE” sets the small “I” apart from the rest of seven letters.

More symbolisms can be linked with the title, particularly on picture frames, staying inside a door, broken bridges, and arrows. Summing up:

As we are venturing on our new chapter/new discoveries, we have to dive. We have to take risks and plunge on it, even if the cost is great.

The group illustrated a man breaking a wall, and them in stage with fire. This is to tell us that they are now ready to push on with newer concepts.

I find this song satisfying, even if it somewhat was wanting compared to other songs. Harmonica tune sets the song right, and is heard in most parts of the song (at first verse and at near-end). While not getting used to iKON and its songs, I liked it being calm and refreshing.

Final notes

This only needs proper promotions to make it stand out.

Even with its shortcomings, YG Entertainment managed to retain what B.I. crafted before leaving. This will be an added positive point for them as we review agencies at year-end.

Further readings: TheBiasList | KPopReviewed

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 86.32%
Grade: B-
Assessment: Satisfactory

Scoreboard

Aspect Points Base
Storyline 9 10
Appearance 30 30
Music 9 10
Dance 10 10
Lessons 7 10
Entertainment 17 25
Other Factors

Super Junior (슈퍼주니어) – 2YA2YAO!: MV Review

For another review, we will touch on Super Junior in their newest track. It seems that SM Entertainment is now making up for missed times. This is done by releasing lead tracks in short span of time.

2YAYAO is their lead track in Timeless repackaged album. With SuJu’s newest release, would they still sustain their old performance? How would an Elf review this? Let’s see.

In this video, they are trying to be at par with modern groups, considering their limited capacities. This is noted with their sceneries shared with underrated boy groups like IN2IT or D1CE. To a lesser extent I find it as a lesser sequel for EXO’s Obsession.

High-noted vocals are being sustained, especially in the chorus. While not being fully utilized, they emphasized individuality in the second verse. This also helps to be in sync with the background music.

When it comes to instrumentals, it seems that they find it sensible to simplify the same. Its structure is somewhat similar to Chungha’s Snapping, which they defined right at the start. The most noticeable part of it is on synths at the bridge.

As we pronounce the title itself (as 일오일야오), it sounds like “E-I-E-I-O” from “McDonald Had A Farm”. Kinda funny.

Super Junior is attempting to show their different side. However, as a whole, it lacked energy necessary to bring excitement to listeners. Monotony, to say the least. This is noticed as compared to Super Clap and I Think I.

Further readings: TheBiasList | KPopReviewed

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 85.71%
Grade: B-
Assessment: Satisfactory

Scoreboard

Aspect Criterion Points Base
Storyline   9 10
Appearance   29 30
Music   8 10
Dance   10 10
Lessons   7 10
Entertainment   17 25
Other Factors Longevity of Super Junior 10 10