If I’m being completely honest, the first few months of PSY’s P Nation have been a dull disappointment. The agency has delivered a string of digital singles, none of which has pushed their artists in new or interesting directions. For all the hype, P Nation feels like business as usual. If anyone is ready to buck that trend, it’s K-pop’s very own Bonnie and Clyde. HyunA and Dawn are releasing new singles on the very same day, over a year after Cube Entertainment gave them the boot for… gulp… dating. This dual release strategy is the most daring move that the agency has taken yet. Did it pay off?
While it’s always nice to hear new music from HyunA, Flower Shower feels like a missed opportunity. Like so many songs of its nature, it sets up a promising base before sabotaging itself with a lethargic instrumental drop chorus. I like the verses quite a bit — especially the bright, layered vocal arrangement. I’ve always preferred HyunA the singer over HyunA the rapper, and her effortlessly charismatic performance makes Flower’s opening 45 seconds an absolute delight. This vaguely psychedelic verse manages to feel both celebratory and subversive, summing up HyunA’s appeal perfectly.
Unfortunately, Flower Shower’s centerpiece is completely uninspiring. I’ll never understand the decision to anchor a pop track with the kind of repetitive, minimalist loop we hear here. After such an ebullient, kaleidoscopic verse, Flower’s non-chorus feels even more jarring. Without a satisfying refrain to latch onto, the track loses much of its oomph. It’s catchy in a squeaky door kind of way… but who wants that? Imagine Flower Shower with a chorus as robust and exciting as Red or Bubble Pop. Four tracks into the P Nation discography and I worry that well-developed melody is seen as a liability rather than an asset. HyunA’s immense star power deserves stronger material.
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