Honestly, K-pop could keep serving me these retro 80’s anthems for months and I’d be happy. When a trend is this fun, even the smaller-name indie releases can be total standouts. Such is the case with Tonight (오늘 밤), from The Voice of Korea contestant Yi Saebom. The song embraces nostalgia in the best way possible, delivering a synth-and-guitar dance track that fits right alongside recent releases from The Midnight Romance and Boyhood.
You’re likely to either love or hate Tonight, and that’s completely dependent on your feelings toward this era of music. My musical taste is rooted in the 80’s. Bombastic synth riffs and huge pop choruses feel like home to me, so I was bound to adore Tonight from the very first listen. Yi Saebom’s vocal texture is more of an acquired taste, and I wish the song’s arrangement had softened it a bit with more layering. But, there’s no denying that she gives a powerful performance – straightforward and impassioned. A song like Tonight requires that kind of go-for-broke intensity.
This track was composed by production team Artronic Waves, who were also responsible for boy group Rainz’ brilliant 2018 b-side Open Ur Heart. I’m hoping that K-pop’s new retro trend brings more demand for producers like this. They know their way around a killer pop hook, and Tonight’s chorus barrels forward with that classic, anthemic heft. It’ll have you Flashdancing in your room — and if you don’t know what that means, go look it up.
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