Last time I wrote about Nada’s solo music, I suggested that she try something more unique in order to stand out among the burgeoning group of female rappers in k-pop. But rather than push the envelope and explore unknown genres, Trippin’ (공식 뮤직비디오) tackles the heavy “badass” rap style favored by artists like Jessi and HyunA. It’s not a sound that has ever appealed to me that strongly, and Trippin‘s aural assault is particularly problematic.
The track kicks off with a thundering mix of trap and EDM, all harsh angles and aggressive kicks of percussion. It makes a fine background for Nada’s combative verses, but it’s not all that pleasant to listen to. In many ways, the song’s general vibe is akin to three minutes of being yelled at. There’s no finesse or subtlety — just a lot of empty bluster.
Speaking of empty, Trippin‘s instrumental drop of a chorus is among the most misguided examples of this structure we’ve heard in some time. Tracks that build themselves around these sorts of drops are a dime a dozen, and it’s getting harder and harder to pull them off. But Trippin‘s musical centerpiece is a disaster for the ages — an ugly, overstuffed hodgepodge of grating production elements thrown together without any sense of purpose beyond being loud. This misstep is only compounded by the lazy, post-drop hook that sees Nada repeat the same line over and over without any variation in tone or rhythm. K-pop is so much better than this, and I have to believe that she is too.