Before making their inevitable Korean comeback, AOA have released their second original Japanese single with Give Me The Love. I liked their first one well enough, but it had absolutely no staying power on my playlist. Give Me The Love seems to be the exact opposite. I was initially underwhelmed, but now find myself… well… giving it a lot of love.
The girls have recruited jpop superstar T.M. Revolution to give the track some authentic Japanese flair. His unmistakable vocals definitely add to the song’s unique character, though even without them, the song sounds nothing like AOA have produced so far. Rather than their usual breezy Brave Brothers hooks, Give Me The Love is propelled by a constant pop stomp, supported by rock guitars and whistled synths that sound as if they were taken from an old western movie. The beat is incredibly steady throughout, almost to the point of feeling lethargic. The entire track follows this linear path, with a melody that has few peaks and valleys. It’s all very measured. Even the chorus feels more like a chant than a melodic refrain.
Usually this would be a complaint, but somehow the song works. I think that’s due to its unique, dense production and the choice to extend a jpop olive branch by including T.M. Revolution. It’s an interesting hybrid of pop and rock, driven by AOA’s undeniable star power. Any qualms I have with its lack of melodic ambition are more than made up for by how successfully the group pulls off this particular genre.