It’s an astonishingly (frustratingly) bare week for k-pop, but thank god for Japan, because there has been a slew of new j-pop releases over the past couple of weeks. I haven’t talked about Da-iCE on the blog before, but I’m a new convert to their music. Their vocal distribution reminds me a lot of Beast, though their general sound isn’t really similar at all. Before I jump (or dive?) in to the recently released Paradive, definitely check out their songs Toki, Splash and Watch Out for examples of the best of their material.
Paradive arrives in the middle of summer, and it’s certainly well-calibrated for warm weather and long days on the beach. The song is a coiled ball of energy, absolutely exploding each time the chorus rears its head. It follows the popular tropical EDM sound of the moment, but augments it with Da-iCE’s trademark sound, which favors big vocal moments and a focus on polished, processed instrumentation. The track runs through a series of hooks that effectively buffer its central refrain. I especially love the second half of the bridge, when the music all but filters out, replaced by a gurgling brass-like synth that brilliantly sets up the soaring chorus.
At nearly five minutes, Paradive does feel as if it could use a little trimming, but it’s hard to find any moment that sticks out as totally unnecessary. Even the instrumental breakdown towards the end adds a festive air to what’s already a strong party track. It may not represent anything stunningly different in j-pop, but it’s yet another solid single from the guys. Listeners who enjoy the EDM-influenced side of k-pop would do well to check them out.