R&B crooner G.Soul debuted under JYP last year after an incredibly long training period. His debut, the gorgeous and soaring You, went mostly underappreciated by the masses, and subsequent digital singles didn’t make that many waves either. Now he’s back with a double a-side single, and both songs couldn’t be more different from one another.
Far, Far Away changes things up drastically, providing a modern, soulful take on reggae music. Though a handful of kpop songs have taken influence from reggae, few title tracks have been this indebted to the genre. The laidback, summery beat will be instantly familiar, but G.Soul’s supple vocals add a unique element to an otherwise been-there, done-that type of song. He has an incredibly distinctive, polished voice, and I wouldn’t have guessed it would match up with reggae so well. From the get-go, every element is working in tandem to create a chill, vibey track more concerned with maintaining a groove than taking any interesting detours. There are definitely no You-style vocal histrionics here.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing, especially since reggae is more of a free-form, improvisational style that works best when freed from traditional pop song structure. Still, it’s not as though the melody ever goes off the rails. The hook is repeated often, and as subtle as it feels, it’s actually quite strong. I’m not sure that it’s the kind of song that will set the charts on fire, but it would certainly serve as a fun soundtrack to a hot, lazy day at the beach.