Don't you hate it when something bad happens and you can’t put the blame on someone else? I do and that's kinda what's happening to me right now? A 7? I should have given 'Sunshine' a 10! And had I done that, it would have finished the rate at #82, which isn't great but still better than #85! Anyway.
'Sunshine' is the second track from 'LOL' to leave the rate. It was composed by the legendary e.one team, proof that some of you will say you're e.one whores but are actually just FAKES. Remember how wrong you did (most of) their songs in the WJSN rate? I remember and lemme tell you something @codecat, you're on thin ice.
Earlier today, I was talking about this song with my beloved co-host Ms. @savilizabeths who was telling me how special it is that when you first see the title of the track, you expect something cute, bright and bubbly, but once you listen to it, it has a completely different vibe. As she so so eloquently put it, this sunshine is a 'soft, warm, afternoon sunshine'.
Before starting rating the songs, I had actually forgotten what 'Sunshine' sounded like nn and I guess that explains my score? I was expecting something catchier and I wasn't in the mood for what the girls were serving me at the time. Shame, because I've been listening to it nonstop today and I've rarely regretted a score like I regret this one. It's basically a summer afternoon nap in song form, it envelops you in its warmth and lets you drift off peacefully. On top of that, it's one of those songs where Yuju's tone plays so beautifully against the other girls', Eunha's in particular. She sounds... heavenly. Sure, she does most of the time, but in this song it's just... Ugh. Those high notes and adlibs? Gorgeous. Most talented vocalist of her generation, nobody comes even close. Not even Beyoncé, according to @eatyourself:
@eatyourself (9) : This gives Usher feat. Alicia Keys, this gives Nelly feat. Kelly Rowland, this gives Destiny's Child vulnerable moments. Except that Beyoncé will never be the vocalist that Yuju is.
@M24 (6.25) : This is such a calming song! I don't usually go to Gfriend for slow songs like this, but this is very nice. The pre-chorus is my favorite part here, along with Yuju's high notes and Eunha's ad libs!
Okay, the 'Labyrinth' mini album should absolutely not be losing it's first song so early in this rate. This is pure balladphobia! Sadly, I have to accept that we are saying goodbye to the gorgeous closing ballad, 'From Me'. The song was composed by Lee Won-jong and No Ju-hwan, with lyrics by Ju-hwan, Jeina Choi and HYBE founder himself, "hitman" bang. It even debuted at #95 on the Gaon Download Chart. Good for it!
Each album in the "回" trilogy closes with a ballad, and all three of them feel very cohesive. Playing them one after another is quite an emotional, cathartic experience I must say. The way each of them builds up into the climatic 'Wheel of the Year' is breathtaking to me. 'From Me' is the softest of the three. It has a big emphasis on acoustic guitar and a slow but strong beat. I want to listen to it when I'm in the backseat of a car, staring out the window as rain pours down and pretend I'm at the emotional climax of a very dramatic movie. It feels perfect for that.
Lyrically, the song is about accepting your own weakness and struggles. It's a very comforting song, openly talknig about having sympathy for yourself even in dark times. As somebody who has spent the better part of her life battling mental health struggles, this definitely resonates with me. Listening to it gives me the warm feeling of somebody taking my hand, listening and telling me they understand and that I'm not alone. I hope any of you who have or are struggling can listen to this song and feel love and strength from both the girls and the rest of us too.
My absolute favourite part of the song is the ad libs and harmonies over the final chorus when Eunha, Yuju and SinB are all singing different parts. It's absolutely beautiful. Eunha in particular really shines. Her vocals are so sweet and smooth, I just love listening to her chorus parts and higher harmonies throughout. I can't help singing along and harmonizing with this song every time I play it. I even looked up the chords because the guitar parts make me want to pull mine out and play around!
Overall, while it ranks third in the ballad trilogy for me, 'From Me' is such an underrated gem. And, spoiler alert, I do not agree at all that it ties with the following song. No, not at all. But I will leave that for my fave @junglefish to cover.
@eatyourself (5) : I don't know, I don't think I'm ready for the 2004 Kelly Clarkson sound to be back.
@M24 (6) : In the battle of slow songs of the "回" series, I think Stairs in the North takes the gold medal, and this one the bronze. It's not bad but that chorus just doesn't do the song any favors. Lyrically, it's quite beautiful, and I wish I could give it a higher score based on that.
So... what is that controversial song tied for #83...?
Will @Attis finally get his wish to see 'My My My' or 'Smile' leave granted?
Or will @Wills be the lucky one and see 'My Buddy' exit the rate? Of course, we could also be saying goodbye to eco-friendly anthem 'Please Save My Earth' which would surely make climate change denier @thommyh very happy.
Well, only one way to know, my friends...
( TIE )
You and I, as we hold hands We'll be friends forever
Congratulations @Wills, another one of your low scores bites the dust!
'My Buddy', from GFRIEND's second EP 'Flower Bud', was written and composed by one of the group's frequent collaborators Heuk Tae. It is, as its name suggests, a song dedicated to you, the fans. Kinda iconic to do that so early in their career, but I guess that's what happens when your debut single is a million seller, ah!
Now, about the song.
If I rated some songs already departed much too low, I definitely overrated this one a bit fff. Don't get me wrong, it's not a bad song! It's very cute and it fits the 'song for the fans' bill perfectly. I also think there's something almost anachronistic about how dated it sounds. Like, if you told me this was intended to be on an early SNSD album, I would believe you. My favorite parts are most definitely the intro and the chorus, which is pure sugary pop, ending with Yuju's over the top delivery of the song's hook, 'I'LL BE YOUR BADDDDYYY!' Kind of a moment, really.
Now, on the other hand, 'My Buddy' has what is probably my most hated moment in any GFRIEND song and it's that horrendous 'my sweety lover is YOU... Aaaaaooooooooooooooo' line. I hate it so much. So much. It sounds super awkward and what is up with Yuju howling like she's auditioning for the remake of An American Werewolf in London? God knows I love the girl but that sure was a choice. I'm sure it wasn't HER choice, but sometimes you gotta put your foot down baby.
I'm kinda gagged it did relatively well in the rate to be honest, as I was expecting it to leave in the bottom 10, which it never placed in for the whole voting period. Still, as I said before, 'My Buddy' is a very cute track and you can't be too mad at a song that is the definition of inoffensive. Well, except Yuju howling at the moon of course, that wasn't inoffensive and I'm still mad at it.
@M24 (6.25) : Great vocals, beautiful vocals! The song is not bad, for a fan dedicated song… I still hate Loona's 365 for example ddd.
The first song from GFRIEND's 'Time for Us' to leave the rate is 'A Starry Sky'.
Hmm I could be wrong, but I don't think anyone has called for this song to be eliminated? Which isn't that surprising as most of you gave it pretty decent scores. If a seven is considered a low score that early in the rate, clearly this little slice of K-Pop balladry worked for you.
I'm gonna be honest, this writeup is gonna be a short one because I kinda want to start eliminating more interesting songs fff. Not that I dislike 'A Starry Sky', I think it's a pretty ballad that works really well in the context of the album. As a standalone track, the song, composed by Monotree's Song Go-eun (don't forget to vote in @Wills' rate!) is perhaps not the most... exciting piece of music? Which didn't stop GFRIEND from performing it on Music Core during their first week of promotion for Sunrise. It even charted on Gaon Download Charts! At #132, sure, but hey, that's still something.
The official description for 'A Starry Sky' defines it as a 'pop ballad with an acoustic feel that expresses a feeling of gratitude for a loved one and a wish for eternal life.' The chorus references the name of the song, with 'A Starry Sky' being the only English words in the lyrics.
@eatyourself (8) : This is somehow nostalgic, it gives me 80s/90s Italian melodrama pop? A 'Non C'è' herbal infusion if you will.
@M24 (6) : This is the odd one out in the album, I'm not sure if sticking a ballad almost at the end was a good idea. It's good, but the production could be a little more dynamic. I'm specially missing some strings here. Yuju's high notes at the end make me want to give this a higher score in spite of its shortcomings.
@Wills (7.5) : The little acapella moment is lovely
So there you go! Did you expect 'A Starry Sky' to be the first song from 'Time For Us' to leave the rate? And what song do you think will miss the top 80? We wanna know!