Happiest of new years to everyone, and to all my fellow bloggers! It’s been a wild ride, but 2020 has ended. I admit, it’s been a great year for the blog as I’ve gotten more written than ever, rejuvenating my passion for blogging, but it also has been a pretty tough year for myself and all physically, emotionally, and mentally. Most importantly, I want to say that I hope everyone stays safe going into 2021 and that we can get through this!
Kicking off in 2021, I’ve set my sights on a new writing goal, and my J-pop fans might dislike this… I’ll be delving more into K-pop, with my first project on 12-member girl group LOONA. If you don’t possess a Twitter account, you might not be familiar with #stanloona, but boy, did it become quite the phenomenon! Did you know their humble beginnings started out as ‘Girl of the Month’? It’s quite literally in their name. (Translate above!) The first girl is HeeJin, who many may have seen on MIXNINE (and made it quite far). Was this first release pre-debut a great foreshadowing of LOONA’s future releases, or was this a stumbling first stepping stone into the K-pop scene? Let’s take a leap into 2021 and see how this release fares!
The introduction of LOONA begins here with “ViViD”, sung by the first revealed member HeeJin. “ViViD” is a sassy jazz track, filled with booming horns overlapped by a piano melody that will have you imagine you’re in a jazz bar. It has quite the feel of more recent LADIES CODE songs, who also happens to be LOONA’s sister senior group. There’s a bit of fire and bite to HeeJin’s vocals as she serenades, and it’s this sort of edge that is alluring for one of LOONA’s top-tier vocalists. A fun little ditty that will probably have you also going ‘oh my god, yes!’, “ViViD” is a great starter track that has HeeJin shine vocally with its haphazard but catchy instrumental. ⬛
What I really enjoy following “ViViD” is “ViViD (Acoustic Mix)“, which as its name suggests, is the acoustic version of HeeJin’s solo song. It takes away all the horns and pianos, and it opts for a guitar melody that still maintains the darker tones of the track but keeps the melody subdued to prevent overshadowing HeeJin’s vocal. This version is perhaps the better of the two, as it gives us a better listen to HeeJin’s youthful voice, detailing to us what we should be expecting when all 12 members do end up joining together. The melody and the vocals here compliment each other nicely, and the delivery of some of the song’s sassier lines feel very cute. A vivid display of talent, HeeJin is one to watch for in the future. ⬛
A fantastic first single, and a great introduction to the first LOONA member revealed. HeeJin has the chops to take LOONA to further heights, and just from the MV alone, has stunning visuals to really put her at the forefront of girl groups to come. The track itself is one that has some replay value, though at this point, LOONA’s catalog has grown to contain tracks with higher replay. That being said, when this single was released, it was on repeat for a time. The acoustic mix of the title track was a surprise to me since I’m normally not fond of acoustic versions of tracks, but I recommend giving that a try, even if you aren’t an Orbit. This vivid, bright single is a recommend overall, and a good starting point to #stanloona.
MUST-LISTEN: ViViD (Acoustic Mix), ViViD
For more LOONA reviews, visit the archive!