PARK JI HOON – 'THE W'
1. On The Rise
6. Let’s Love
Park Ji Hoon has just dropped his newest EP, 'The W.' It has six tracks, including the title track 'Wing.' This is his third EP.
The first track is "On The Rise." You wouldn't know it from the beginning, this is a fantastic filled-out song. It's billowy like a ballad, but it's not a ballad. I like the deeper voiced vocals on this one. They make the song sound quite spectacular. It's a shame it's an intro track and is so short. "Wing" is the title track. I couldn't shake the feeling that the song sounds familiar. That changes when it hits the first bridge. The urgency in the chorus is quite effective. The song is an unapologetic banger.
"Frequency" slows things down for a seductive R&B experience. It ticks all the right boxes, from a down-pitched backing track to a subtle tinkling piano. It's a slickly packaged tune and is definitely worth a listen. "Driving" starts out as soft pop and doesn't stray far from it. The higher-pitched whispery vocals do you have the work here, creating a refreshing soundscape you won't want to escape from. There's definitely a top-down-wind-through-the-hair feeling to the song. In that, he succeeded.
I like how "Paradise" begins. I'm a fan of sounds that aren't quite music, and the intro definitely qualifies. And this is another of those songs that's quite pleasant until it reaches the chorus. The synth bridge is rather jarring and doesn't really go with the rest of the song. This is a trend that is becoming more and more common, and I'm not sure I like it. "Let’s Love" sounds for all the world like a tropical house beat (speaking of trends...). It's not bad, and he lets the vocals control the song. We don't hear a tropical house beat too often these days, and it's a refreshing change.
The thing I enjoy about this collection of songs is that they're quite evocative. Tracks like "Driving" and "On The Rise" really seem to make you feel something. I'd hesitate to call it mood music, but it is quite an experience to listen to some of these. While his Wanna One days might be behind him, he still stands tall all on his own.
As you might expect from a summer video, the colors here really pop. From a sunset painting the sky orange to a bright blue sky to a tent where the ceiling has all the colors of the rainbow. Even the clothes they wear are brilliant.
The video seems to alternate between outdoor scenes and manufactured facades on a soundstage. The facades remind me of second-gen videos, so I enjoyed seeing them here. The outdoor scenes are primarily Ji Hoon in his truck, but there are few more scattered about, like a desk in the middle of nowhere.
I think part of what keeps your attention is the movement. Rarely is anyone or anything standing still. Even when the truck is not moving the camera still pans around it. It's a nice trick, and it definitely keeps things moving forward.
Not much about this video actually makes sense, but I don't think it's intended to. I'm not sure the director knew entirely what this song is about, or if he did know, he didn't know what to do with it. That doesn't stop it from being a great video, though. As I said, the sheer amount of color in this video is what helps it shine.
I can definitely put my seal of approval on this one.
MV SCORE: 8.0
ALBUM SCORE: 8.0