Ironically, the BVNDIT song that’s stuck with me the most wasn’t a title track at all. In fact, it wasn’t even performed in Korean. February’s odd, lyrically cringey Cool wasn’t perfect, but at least it had a personality. Apart from that, the group’s discography has felt completely generic. It’s competent – as all modern K-pop is – but hasn’t offered anything we can’t get from dozens of other groups.
Jungle introduces BVNDIT’s second mini album, and once again pairs them with a big name production team. This time it’s MosPick again, who know their way around a great pop song. That greatness peeks through here and there within Jungle, but is undercut by a ho-hum chorus and general lack of imagination.
With the girl crush trend in full swing, we’ve heard so many songs like Jungle lately. Along with the moody boy group fad, “girl crush” is too often a case of style over substance. Jungle knows exactly which points it wants to hit, but forgets to tether them to a killer melody. Without this most basic of building blocks, it’s hard for any of Jungle’s charms to really land. Its rhythmic backbone is fun, and the percussion-heavy pre-chorus slaps with a welcome power. I even like the climactic dance break, which brings a middle-eastern flair to the instrumental. But stripped of this ornamentation, is there really much of a song here? It’s mostly just the girls casting off scraps of sing-talk melody that allow them to pose and look mildly threatening. Like so much of this year’s K-pop, Jungle feels like an empty performance piece, with little to lure you back after the stage show is over.
Be sure to add your own rating by participating in the poll below!