Today is truly the day of male solo releases, with no less than three big-name tracks dropping. And of those three, Park Jihoon easily takes the win. I’m not sure I would’ve expected this. I’ve enjoyed his two title tracks, while finding their respective albums quite boring. But, for Wing he’s injected his music with needed energy. It’s not quite the relentless dance track I was hoping for, but its upbeat nature is very refreshing.
I’ve never found Jihoon’s voice all that compelling on its own, and I think Wing would have improved by having an entire K-pop group at the helm. However, most of the track moves at such a brisk pace that it’s hard not to get swept up in its charms. Right off the bat, Wing unveils a catchy, rhythmic vocal riff underlined by some great synth textures. Rather than drop into some boring, half-time verse, the song maintains its energetic percussion until we hit the disorienting pre-chorus. Thankfully, it’s not long before the chorus reignites Wing’s intensity, merging a celebratory hook with that catchy riff that opened the track.
Wing’s worst instincts arrive courtesy of structural trends that have plagued K-pop for the past couple of years. The first time through, I waited nervously to see if the second verse would drop out the way the vast majority of these songs do. And true to form, Wing lurches into an energy-killing trap breakdown. It’s not a total deal-breaker, but it is disappointing. Is this just how every single K-pop dance track is going to sound now? Fortunately, Wing is mostly a lot of fun and may even grow more addictive as we enter the summer season. At the very least, its sense of joy is like an oasis in the middle of a barren, angsty boy group desert.
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