Review

Song Review: Kang Daniel – Waves (ft. Simon Dominic & Jamie)

Founding his own agency seems to have been a smart move for Kang Daniel. He’s able to release music when he wants and embrace the genres he’s interested in. And lucky for fans, he’s been pretty prolific so far. Wave follows March’s underrated 2U, and is a proper collaboration track. It’s also a pre-release teaser for his new mini album, scheduled to drop next week.

While everyone else goes retro this month, Kang Daniel has enlisted rapper Simon Dominic and vocalist Jamie for a Latin-inspired dance track that feels as if it could have been at home within the summer of 2018 or 2019. Knowing how I felt about those two K-pop summers, that might sound like a complaint. But, I think Waves pulls off the sound quite well.

Rather than act as a Kang Daniel solo featuring a few guests, Waves divides its time equally between its three performers. Daniel takes charge of the chorus and an opening rap, but Simon Dominic and Jamie get their time to shine as well. They’re both good choices to contrast Daniel’s smooth vocals. Dominic fits especially well within this style, and it’s always nice to hear his flow. At just under three minutes, Waves doesn’t wear out its welcome, and doesn’t force itself to twist into any unnecessary breakdowns. Its dancehall beat remains consistent throughout, a welcome thud of percussion that’s hard not to groove along to. Melodically, there isn’t a ton of meat on these bones, but the chorus is catchy in an easily digestible way. And, that’s a good way to sum up Waves. It doesn’t demand much from the listener, but I can’t imagine anyone actively disliking a song as genial as this.

 Hooks 8
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 8
 RATING 8

Be sure to add your own rating by participating in the poll below!

9 thoughts on “Song Review: Kang Daniel – Waves (ft. Simon Dominic & Jamie)

  1. I usually defend Kang Daniel, because his crush status is of a certain type that has been around since recorded music started. But at some point, he actually has to release a song that could be an actual hit that meets or exceeds expectations, or his fame will quickly wither.
    This song sounds like a song Super Junior would do with a Latinx guest star, released as a second single off the repackage as a fan service for their Central & South American fans. SuJu would amp up the beat more, make it higher and noisier in the mix, and make it more sultry.
    As is here, it’s just OK. It plays it way too cool. Not good, not bad, just OK.

    Liked by 1 person

    • If you’re claiming that nosier and crazier sound would make the song pop/’amp up’/etc., then I disagree. I think a lot of kpop goes that route and ends up being just noisy. (off-topic: I especially like his Cyan album because it’s intentionally easy on the ears, contrasting a lot of dance-tracks from other groups.)

      Besides, I think this song does a great job introducing the atmosphere to the title track to come. It isn’t the main dish and Kang Daniel gave lots of spotlight to his featured artists, so it’s probably not meant to be an earth shattering track.

      He really needs a hit tho to get recognised as a successful solo artist. Although, his works are good enough that his fans won’t leave him anytime soon. As per general public, there’re many many less great songs that end up being hits due to other exterior factors. So like, do we really need to discuss about fame on music review page?

      Like

    • If you’re claiming that nosier and crazier sound would make the song pop/’amp up’/etc., then I disagree. I think a lot of kpop goes that route and ends up being just noisy. (off-topic: I especially like his Cyan album because it’s intentionally easy on the ears, contrasting a lot of dance-tracks from other groups.)

      Besides, I think this song does a great job introducing the atmosphere to the title track to come. It isn’t the main dish and Kang Daniel gave lots of spotlight to his featured artists, so it’s probably not meant to be an earth shattering track.

      He really needs a hit tho to get recognised as a successful solo artist. Although, his works are good enough that his fans won’t leave him anytime soon. As per general public, there’re many many less great songs that end up being hits due to other exterior factors. So like, do we really need to discuss about fame on music review page?

      Like

      • Let me rephrase: by noisier and higher in the mix here I meant louder, more prominent bass and percussion. Lean into the Latin sound more, not less, doubling or tripling down on it. Make the rhythm =move=. The noisier you took it to mean, which I have used in that context in many past comments, I agree is just noise even on my best earbuds.

        I am old enough to have seen several generations of solo artists launched by TV shows come and go. At some point, an idol show winner needs to become known for something other than becoming super popular on a TV show with a whole cadre of super fans. I am not bashing Daniel himself, just saying what the usual trajectory is. Even David Cassidy had a hit song among the general US population that he was still known for decades later (“I think I love you”). The Monkees are still so well known because their songs were really really good written by the best songwriters.

        I did not realize at the time of my comment it was the pre-release, so let’s see what the real release sounds like.

        Like

  2. I honestly vibe with this a lot. Love that it’s a genuine collab and not just a minimum feature. Daniel’s vocals in that prechorus… I am listening!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.