[This review reflects the opinions of the author and not necessarily those of allkpop.]
2. Why Not?
4. Fall Again
6. Hide & Seek
Orbits have had to wait a long 8 months for the comeback of LOONA, but luckily, the girls have released an 8-song album full of well-written tracks for us to enjoy. This album marks the third extended play LOONA has put out thus far. [12:00] begins with the title track, "12:00", an introductory track with a house beat that's intense and anticipatory. The sampled astronaut audio is really unique to the Orbit fanbase and quite well thought out and executed.
The chosen title track for this comeback is "Why Not?", an ultra-powerful, invigorating anthem. The song is harmonically rich and has a nice changeup at the chorus that keeps the house beat from the intro going. A reliably-solid single! Following the tracklist order, "Voice" is my favorite b-side on this album for it's synth-heavy instrumental and cleverly written vocal arrangement. The song is retro in feel and hypnotic in melody. Moreover, the last song on this release, "Star," is the English version of "Voice." Though the song is in English, it still manages to convey the same feeling as the original Korean version.
"Fall Again" is a gentle ballad that feels a lot like walking with a loved one through a park on a brisk autumn day. It's satisfying and sensitive. "Universe" doesn't pick up the tempo much from "Fall Again" and keeps things slow with a track that ramps up slowly in intensity. "Universe," though nice to listen to, doesn't really entice me to want more as the climax doesn't pay off quite as much as I'd like.
"Hide & Seek" is upbeat and entertaining, but the song doesn't have quite the bounce and attractive hook that the single has despite having similar composition. "OOPS!" is the edgiest song on this release, as it stands out a bit disjointed from the rest of the album. The song is percussion-heavy, and the vocals feel a bit jarring against the rap. Overall, the album is quite listenable and, in my opinion, worth the 8-month long wait, but I prefer the first half of the album to the latter half.
LOONA's music video for "Why Not?" actually gave me a visceral reaction when watching it for the first time. I felt goosebumps when those first lyrics started because of the members' stage presence, and that's a good thing! I enjoyed the styling that showed a variety of different fashionable concepts - in particular, the dance break at 1:15 done in the oversized suits! The music video's weakness lies in the fact that it's a bit disconnected member-to-member, as it's a little unclear what the relationship between individual shots are, leaving you wondering what the overall theme was really supposed to be.
MV Score: 7
Album Score: 8