Review

Song Review: D1CE – Draw You

Boy group D1CE have been saddled with a horrible fate for any newly debuted rookie: the long hiatus. We haven’t heard from them since last July, sacrificing almost a year of unfilled potential. It’s hard enough to build momentum when you’re from a smaller agency, but lack of activity makes for an even trickier situation. I wasn’t really sold on their 2019 debut track Wake Up – or any song on their album, for that matter – but I’m always up for second chances.

Unfortunately, Draw You (너를 그린다) sounds like a group sputtering to its end, rather than an up-and-coming force in the industry. Though the track does an admirable job highlighting their vocals, its sound is rather forgettable. In fact, minus its slight trap influences, Draw You reminds me of the typical mid-tempo effort you’d find on the second half of any 2010’s boy group album. That doesn’t make it a bad song, but it does make it utterly devoid of unique personality. Two releases in, and I’m not sure what D1CE are bringing to K-pop that can’t be found elsewhere.

On the plus side, Draw You has a refreshingly old-school approach to song arrangement. The instrumental swells in all the right places, even bringing in some guitar for the climax. D1CE sound great throughout. Like most rookies, they clearly have the talent necessary. Now, they just need the individual perspective. What kind of mark are they hoping to leave on the K-pop landscape? If the wish is to become a new-gen pop ballad group (à la BTOB), then I’m gonna need some jaw-droppingly good vocals or incredible songwriting. In both regards, Draw You is okay, at best.

 Hooks 6
 Production 7
 Longevity 7
 Bias 6
 RATING 6.5

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10 thoughts on “Song Review: D1CE – Draw You

  1. It’s bizarre to me that they’re technically under the same company as Dreamcatcher, arguably the most idiosyncratic and distinct girl group in the industry at the moment, with some very epic songs to boot. I mean, I know it’s not uncommon for agencies to treat their boy groups differently from their girls, but in this case did they decide to go as unremarkably bland and safe as possible to counteract the riskiness of DC’s output?? Baffling.

    I’m trying to think of sounds and concepts that would be just as niche in kpop as a rock/metal + horror combo and my brain arrives at, like…electroswing + vintage retro. Classical opera + medieval times. 90s techno + cybernetic revolution. Vaudeville + steampunk???

    Can we do one of these instead, please? Or all of them? I’m desperate here!

    Liked by 5 people

    • They’re still in their MINX stage. The rebranding will be swift, and it will be brutal, but we’ll all be glad when it happens.

      … please, please let this happen; the waste of time & talent we’re witnessing is way too depressing otherwise.

      Liked by 2 people

    • I have been pushing for a 90’s techno revival for years now! It’s one of my favorite genres, and way past due for a reinvention. I’ve been listening to a lot of 90’s J-pop lately and almost all of it is techno inspired in some way. Great beats and great melodies!

      Liked by 3 people

    • I vote for steampunk kpop theme! I mean, really, why has no one done this yet? (… this is where someone chimes in one example where they did …)

      Liked by 2 people

    • Look if you’ve heard Not A Dream by D.D.C. (who is Jinyoung + Dami + Classmate’s Byeongmin, all from Happyface groups) they can absolutely pull off electro swing. Nu:face (who, iirc, was part of HNB and was supposed to debut but became a producer instead) was behind that track, and he also worked on the best B-side on this album (Another One). I like the retro/classic pop influences that seem to show up in his work, and I wonder why they don’t just make him do all of D1CE’s work.

      But really, you’re right. The difference between their management of Dreamcatcher and D1CE is striking. I mean Dreamcatcher’s management hasn’t been completely perfect (as a diehard InSomnia, heaven knows I’ve had some complaints) but it sets the right pattern: establish a sonic and thematic identity, and consistently work with the best possible team of producers. D1CE seem to be doing the complete opposite. Then again, given that I mostly stan flop groups they may be on to something, lol

      Like

  2. 2010ish yes. My mind went to a leftover Big Bang song, Gdragon starts off, Daesung joins in, trades off with Taeyang, TOP does the rap and etc.
    As is, here, with these voices it is competent and pleasant.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re not the only one thinking this! For some reason Eyes, Nose, Lips started playing in my head while I was listening.

      I like this song enough, but like I’ve said before, I don’t know if this is the single they need to break out

      Like

  3. Surprisingly, I have a different opinion on it. The song is pretty good. It could be labeled as bland and has been done before, but I think they pulled off this song without the need to be unique and quirky. A lot of groups are doing their best to do seem different, but some just ends up to experimental. For this comeback, Draw You fits all their vocals, and it goes into the right places. Maybe if they released this in the Spring it could do better in charts, but honestly they doubled their views with this song compared to Wake Up.

    Dreamcatcher is a group that definitely benefits from their unique style, but I think D1CE wouldn’t which is why this comeback is really good for me.

    Like

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