ZICO – 'THINKING Part 2'
1. another level (Ft. PENOMECO)
2. Being Left (Ft. Dvwn)
5. The Language of Flowers (Ft. Jehwi)
Zico has just released the second part of his 'Thinking' album. This one has another 5 tracks, including collaborations with Jehwi, Dvwn, and PENOMECO. And it's obvious he's been pondering some pretty heavy stuff.
"another level" features PENOMECO, and both Zico and the guy I just mentioned do an awesome job on this hybrid R&B hip-hop track. I like the way they aren't slaves to the metronome. There are several places where they cram as many syllables into the raps as they can. An uncharacteristically soft tune for Zico, "Being Left" explores whether he'll be okay alone. It's a little different than a lot of the breakup songs, and he ruminates about how he's "stuck in last winter," unable to forget the past and move on. It sort of straddles the difference between soft pop and a ballad, but it never really loses control. It's a tender, contemplative tune.
"Dystopia" continues a bit of that softness, but it has a lot more rapping in it than the previous tracks. And that, frankly, is why I listen to Zico in the first place. I like it because they have a nice funky R&B guitar in the background, and a sweet tempo. I also like how it comes crashing down, and resembles a bit of noise pop at the end. "Balloon" is done to an acoustic guitar. It's more soft pop, which is to be expected on an album titled 'Thinking.' Here, he likens his feelings to a balloon, "flying in the sky, pushed by the wind." It seems like he feels helpless, and the implication is there's someone who made him feel that way. "The Language of Flowers" is Jehwi's party. At least, he does all the singing on this billowy, orchestra-dominated, falsetto-drenched affair. In my opinion, it's the weakest of the bunch sonically. Not songwriting-wise, though. It's subdivided into several parts, the main verses bearing names like "Imperial," "Witness," and "Wisdom." And while I like the sentiment in the lyrics, the song didn't keep my interest all that long.
In the end, this is kind of a departure for Zico. However, he admits in interviews that his 'bad boy' image isn't him. That he's more laid-back and well-behaved in everyday life. And during the quiet moments, this is the guy thinks about. One of the things I like is that he has an interest in different styles. No one song sounds like another on here, and that's one of its strong points. The man knows what he's doing, and this EP shows that off quite well.
In the MV for "Being Left," veteran actress Bae Jong Ok is alone.
She does everything in a solitary fashion, whether knocking on a door and getting no answer, to eating candy alone or folding laundry. She even rides the bus alone. All of it is done for herself. We see a ghost of a guy flit through, possibly her son. She might be an empty-nester.
There are some interesting scene transitions, like foam giving way to the sea. And I like the sun glinting on the sea. The beauty of that scene always grabs me.
There are some darker aspects to this, like a spilled bottle of pills. Did she take those to possibly end her life? The MV never gives you the answer, but instead leaves it up to you.
It's definitely something to ponder while you're watching this. What do you do when you're alone? When no one comes to check on you? And what do you think happened here? Got any fan theories? Drop me a line in the comments.
MV SCORE: 8.6
ALBUM SCORE: 8.3