Most of the time, a kpop group’s title track is the best song on their album. But, sometimes b-sides deserve recognition, too. In the singles-oriented world of kpop, I want to spotlight some of these buried treasures and give them the props they deserve.
EXID’s Street album is a bit of a frustrating listen for me. The production throughout is impeccable, influenced heavily by 80’s synth and funk. But more often than not, the hooks just don’t hit as strongly as I’d like. Are You Hungry? (Yum Yum) (냠냠쩝쩝) is the exception, as it’s essentially constructed as one giant hook. A unit track from members Jung Hwa and Hyerin, Hungry sees the girls tackling a sound somewhere between Orange Caramel’s bonkers quirkiness and T-ara’s colorful electropop. It’s not a sound I would have ever matched with EXID, but it works incredibly well.
Yes, Hungry is ridiculously silly, but that’s its central charm. I love that it’s not taking itself as seriously as most of the album. The actual chorus is basically a series of blips and bleeps, quickly segueing into an electronic refrain and some prominent aegyo. In this way, it feels more like a performance piece than an actual song. This, among other things, probably sabotaged any chance it had to become a title track, but I personally enjoy it more than L.I.E. It’s certainly more fun!