K-Pop A-Z

K-Pop A-Z Review: EXO – El Dorado

One song. Every day. Alphabetical order.

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El Dorado (from Exodus / Love Me Right – 2015)

A fan favorite, El Dorado is a perfect representation of EXO’s signature sounds. You’ve got the moody r&b of the verses, largely carried by the group’s smooth vocals. Then there’s the towering chorus, which incorporates chants and theatrical layering to hearken back to EXO’s debut. Of the two contrasts, I’m definitely a proponent of the latter. When El Dorado gets going, it feels bigger than a mere pop song. Luckily, this immense chorus makes up most of the track’s running time, composed of three distinct segments that tie together to forge a larger-than-life centerpiece. I’m not sure I find the melodies as strong as most fans seem to, but the arrangement is so dynamic and unrelenting that it hardly matters.

 Hooks 8
 Production 9
 Longevity 9
 Bias 9
 RATING 8.75




5 thoughts on “K-Pop A-Z Review: EXO – El Dorado

  1. Audacious, ambitious, cinematic, mostly realized.

    This may sound crazy, but this song reminds me of The Who, as in a song that imagines and creates a wholly new soundscape for a musical. I think SM is on occasion willing to release experimental individual songs, whether as A or B-sides, but I don’t think SM is crazy enough to make a whole musical.


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