With over 2,300 songs on my iPhone’s “K-Pop Singles” playlist, I thought it would be fun to add a bit of unpredictability to my song review posts. So as a result, we have the “Random Shuffle Review” feature.
The rules are simple. I fire up my playlist, press “shuffle,” and whatever song plays first gets the full Bias List treatment!
Year Released: 2010
Back in the waning days of K-pop’s second generation, fans were mystified by a recurring audio tag that appeared before many high-profile comebacks. Romanized as “this is mordney present” (or maybe “this is more than present”?), the nonsensical phrase even spawned its own meme character. I’m not sure that anyone ever confirmed a specific producer’s tie to this tag, but it remains a staple of its era and, quite frankly, a seal of approval on many classic songs.
U-Kiss’ Shut Up (시끄러!!) is not a classic, but it’s certainly not for a lack of trying. Building off the anything-goes energy of its time, the track pulses on a synth-driven dance beat, intercut with a series of unexpected breakdowns that bookend each verse. I love its sense of rhythm, even if the autotuned vocals blunt some of the power. Contrary to expectation, the chorus actually removes most of the instrumentation to focus on its soaring melody. Unfortunately, things start to fall off the rails around the second verse, which indulges the boy group tropes of 2010 without any clear idea of where it’s going. This is too bad, because once that breakdown comes back, Shut Up delivers a knockout climax . Overall, it’s an extremely odd little title track — somewhat formless and lacking any real hook. The fact that it works at all is a testament to its performers’ conviction.