Most of the time, a kpop group’s title track is the best song on their album. But, sometimes b-side tracks deserve recognition, too. In the singles-oriented world of kpop, I wanted to spotlight some of these buried treasures and give them the props they deserve.
For those who love the work of production team Sweetune, 100%’s new mini album is like manna from heaven. It may not be a total reinvention of the core Sweetune sound, but it hearkens back to a melodically driven era of k-pop that just isn’t as prominent anymore. The entire album actually feels like it could have been released by a group like Boyfriend circa 2011.
Of all the album’s tracks, A Day Like Today (오늘 같은 날) is the most uptempo. It also represents exactly why I love Sweetune so much. The icy 80’s synths that open the song feel like a continuation of March’s Platonic Love, but the melody here has less novelty and more heft. The punchy chorus is perfectly calibrated, growing in force each time it’s repeated. This isn’t some dinky one-phrase hook. It’s got some life to it, fusing multiple melodic lines into something that feels climactic, yet intimately connected to everything around it. The production is just perfect, bringing pop rock energy (most notable in that gorgeous electric guitar outro) and real drive to what could otherwise a pretty transient melody. I hope the guys continue to work with Sweetune, because with songs like this it feels like we have the makings of a real renaissance on our hands.