Few k-pop artists could captivate with their voice alone, but Roy Kim is one of them. He could release the dullest song in the world and still knock it out of the park with that impossibly rich, honeyed tone. Korea seems to agree, though it’s been a year and a half since he’s released an album.
Egoist (이기주의보) is one of two new title tracks from Kim, and it does a nice job injecting some bounce into his oftentimes maudlin work. Listening to the album preview, Egoist stuck out immediately for its prominent — if simple — electronic beat. It’s a new sound for Kim, but doesn’t stray too far from mostly-acoustic tracks like Bom Bom Bom. The instrumental possesses a wonderfully indie quirk that feels well-suited to his personality. It’s a nice palette cleanser before the series of ballads that are sure to follow.
Melody-wise, Egoist isn’t one of Kim’s strongest works — but it doesn’t have to be. Everything about the song is light and breezy. A more bombastic hook would have overpowered the track’s charm. Instead, we have a lilting chorus that takes a playful rise toward falsetto in its second half. A soft buttress of backing vocals provides enough oomph to keep the melody from fizzling. In many ways, the song belongs in the company of the many acoustic springtime releases I complained about so much last month, but Roy Kim knows how to do this sub-genre justice.