[This review reflects the opinions of the author and not necessarily those of allkpop.]
1. NUNU NANA
3. Put it on ya (ft. BM of KARD, nafla)
5. Who Dat B
6. Drip (ft. Jay Park)
In the heat of summer, Jessi makes a smoking hot return with her 3rd mini-album, NUNA. Jessi's last release was over 3 years ago, so the anticipation of her comeback has had social media buzzing over what will sound like. Jessi's spitfire and aggressive lyricism has become her signature style, so we expect nothing less from the songs on this particular release.
NUNA opens with the song "NUNU NANA" where Jessi is confidently boasting that regardless of the time she's spent out of the industry and her age, she has a spirit that doesn't relent! Her constant yelling of "I'm that NUNA" solidifies her as the single K-Pop idol that gives the least f*cks. However, the big surprise to me while giving this album the first few listens was the fact that Jessi didn't record an album of aggressive tracks, in fact, she recorded multiple slower songs where she both sang and did the rap.
After "NUNU NANA" is the song "STAR" detailing Jessi's journey to stardom. With a simple melody and acoustic guitar backing, the song's energy and delivery was extremely reminiscent of American artist, Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas when she first hit the scene as a soloist. Jessi continues to show off her singing skill on "Numb" and "Who Dat B". Jessi continues to show a vulnerable softness while maintaining in-your-face confidence that is rare in female idols.
There are some serious notables on Jessi's new album including the "netizen favorite" idols: Jay Park, BM of KARD, and nafla. "Put it on ya" is a classic club banger featuring BM and nafla. The really spitfire verse actually comes from BM's feature. In fact, I feel that nafla's verse falls flat next to BM's really rhythmic flow. Jessi's really early 2000s 50 Cent energy shows on this song. I prefer "Put it on ya" to "Drip" only because I feel like Jessi and Jay are such big personalities when they perform, that they almost clash on "Drip" because both give their own aggressive and dynamic performances. "Put it on ya" had better synergy on the track.
Jessi's back in this hot summer release and it definitely shines through in the MV for "NUNU NANA". We have shots of her in a cage, shots of her breaking statues in an all-white room, and of course her dancing her signature sultry choreo! It seems like she wants to signify her growth in a lot of her songs and it definitely comes through in her music video as well. Jessi rocks numerous fabulous outfits including basketball shorts, Fendi jackets and tops, and even a money jumpsuit.
The MV is able to hold my attention fairly well, and her choreography is actually rather cute considering the toughness of the lyrics. The cage and dancing and everything kind of gives me Miley Cyrus, "Can't Be Tamed" energy with the idea of breaking out of one's boundaries.
MV Score: 7.3
Album Score: 7.3