Longtime readers of The Bias List will know that I have my particular likes and dislikes when it comes to musical structure and style, and once I dig into something that bothers me about a song, it becomes hard to enjoy even the music’s more successful moments. One crime against pop that has been especially unforgivable this year is the lack of a proper chorus. As EDM has continued to swell in popularity, instrumental drops are replacing what used to be the very heart of a good pop song. But just because this approach frustrates me, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t examples that work despite their trend-driven flaws.
Varsity’s Can You Come Out Now (지금 나올래?) is one of those exceptions. It’s not a particularly brilliant track, and certainly doesn’t pull any tricks we haven’t heard a million times before, but something about that loungey electro riff that drives the instrumental just hits the sweet spot. Yes, it takes the place of what should have been a proper chorus. And yes, it never builds toward anything remotely exciting. But damn if it isn’t catchy.
Varsity have been releasing middling to good tracks so far, failing to stand out among the crowd of younger boy groups that seems to multiply every year. As far as I can tell, they have no distinguishing characteristic when it comes to their music, and now that they’ve dipped their feet into the tropical waters, they’ve become even less memorable. Still, Can You Come Out Now has a laid-back smoothness to its hook that feels more effortless than many songs of this genre. It’s a vibe-driven track, and for once I’m happy to fall into its simplistic, trend-chasing charms.