Review

Song Review: Nu’est – I’m In Trouble

Since reuniting as five, Nu’est have displayed contrasting charms. First, we had the angsty Bet Bet, followed by the buoyant Love Me. Anyone who’s read my reviews for awhile will know which concept I preferred. New single I’m In Trouble plays things down the middle, jumping on the minimalist, bass-driven trend with a hook that hearkens back to 2018’s Nu’est W standout Dejavu. But though it’s too early to tell, I’m not sure that Trouble will enjoy the same staying power.

I like this general direction for Nu’est. It’s groovy and sophisticated, complimenting their ‘senior group’ status in K-pop’s current landscape. My main issue is one that’s plagued the vast majority of 2020 comebacks. While the song is polished and crisp, it doesn’t have much of a melodic through line. Its verses are all over the place, unveiling the kind of sing-talk structure that fills time but doesn’t compel in any meaningful way. Even after a few listens, I was hard-pressed to recall anything from the verses, and I think that’s because there isn’t any cohesive melody to be found.

Trouble’s chorus is better, though it relies too heavily on its repeated refrain. It’s almost like the vocal-driven version of a beat drop, looping the same hook over and over until it wears thin. The Seventeen-like vocal layering is as satisfying as it’s always been, but doesn’t give Nu’est a sound of their own. Like I’ve mentioned before with both groups, I wish they’d expand their suite of producers a bit. I appreciate how Baekho composes the bulk of Nu’est’s material, but I wonder how he’d fare if paired with a collaborator outside his comfort zone. Right now, it feels like we’re just getting the same basic thing, filtered through slightly different genre lenses. With this in mind, I’m In Trouble is solid, but brings nothing new to the table.

 Hooks 7
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7
 RATING 7.5

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11 thoughts on “Song Review: Nu’est – I’m In Trouble

  1. Although whatever aims to be “sophisticated” is just not my cup of tea, I really appreciate the twist in Nu’Est’s post-Produce 101 artistic direction. At the moment, they’re probably one of the *very* few boy groups showing a style of their own: their brand is not as strong as many competitors’ one, okay, but in terms of concepts and production you can say “This is Nu’Est” only with Nu’Est. And to me this means 100 points.
    As it happened lots of times before in this 2020, the fault is they choose the wrong title track: IMHO Fireworks and Back To Me are much more interesting, but I stay by their side anyway.

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  2. Idk man, this song’s pretty good to me, especially the production. Thought I’ll have to agree on the verses which aren’t great. Thought the chorus and progression is very charming. My only gripe is the final chorus, I just wish it was bolder.
    Consensus: 8.25, groovy, charming, minimal

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Once again, the video intro instrumental is way more awesome than the actual song. This one is ok, pleasant, but a bit vanilla. I have listened to it 4 or 5 times this morning, and whoosh I still can’t grab onto anything to remember.

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  4. Ha, for me the chorus (especially the 2nd part) is the weakest part of the song.I just can’t get behind repeating the same verse over and over.
    On a positive note, I enjoy the slapping bass in this song way too much. It’s one of those rare dark and murky songs that just works for me.
    Reading the comments above, now I can’t wait to listen to the whole album.

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  5. I agree there’s something missing from I’m in troble, the hook is catchy but the verses forgettables, I has grown on my tho.

    The album has some great b-sides, Moon Dance, Back to me, and Shooting stars are my favorites, a lot of people seems to like Fireworks, but it’s not my kind of song.

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