Review

Song Review: CIX – Jungle

Originally scheduled for release all the way back in June, it’s been a long wait to hear CIX’s Jungle (정글). The hiatus is a stumbling block for the group, who gained quite a following during their debut year. Their music – and the producers they’ve been paired with – hasn’t been for me thus far, and Jungle does little to change that. However, I think it’s their most interesting title track yet, with a few undeniable highlights.

Jungle’s introduction, up until its first beat drop, is quite something. I love how the instrumental bides its time, hanging mostly in the background yet building drama with dramatic piano and organ. The melody here is gorgeous – haunting but catchy at the same time. If the entire track had pulled from this sound palette, we’d have something quite special. Unfortunately, Jungle quickly transforms into much more generic boy group fare. The instrumental continues to have its moments, especially as it briefly accelerates during the second chorus and later during the song’s finale. But, the drama of its first minute largely evaporates.

What Jungle lacks is a strong hook. Its lurching chorus does little to elicit sparks. It’s incredibly atmospheric, but never harnesses a strong sense of melody. And, the beat drop that follows feels too anemic for a track with such dynamic ideas. Stripped of all the production flourishes, I just don’t know if there’s that much of a song here. But, based on past CIX material, I’m well aware that I’m not the target audience for this. At the very least, I can appreciate Jungle‘s cinematic ambition.

 Hooks 7
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7
 RATING 7.5

20 thoughts on “Song Review: CIX – Jungle

  1. mane just say u hate cix! nothing wrong w that.. but if they’re repeatedly pulling from exo palettes and you’re consistently giving them average scores u might have more than just a ‘bias’ here. not to mention ur blog comes up as soon as people search this song.

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    • I don’t hate CIX, but so far their music has not been for me, which I stated at the beginning of this review.

      And I’d disagree with them pulling from EXO. They may borrow some aspects from some EXO b-sides, but so far I don’t find any of their songs to be as strong as EXO’s titles. Just my opinion, though.

      Liked by 6 people

  2. Some songs seem designed to just play in the background. I really really like this one, but again, it was just playing in the background all the time. I think it’s the kind of song I might have gotten bored of, had I been paying attention. So what you said about it being “incredibly atmospheric” is spot on, I guess.

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  3. Honestly I’ve been suprised with how much I liked CIX’s last two albums, and this comeback is no different. The atmospheric elements are right up my alley but I just wish they went for a double time finale. I think it’s a very nice song but I’m sure I’ll get bored of it soon so it gets a solid 8. Very happy with this single and even though CIX might not put out my favourite k-pop singles, I can respect them for what they are. Unless the track sounds like New World.

    Also Nick, what are your thoughts on their Japanese release Revival? It’s quite melodic and nice but I wonder why it never got a review. Did it slip under your radar or was there just not much to say on it?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The verses are awesome. I was mesmerized right up until 1:08 when the chorus hit and then …. I didn’t expect that chorus. I didn’t expect it and I was not pleasantly surprised. A high falsetto line with a quasi drop with this synth hook, and robot voice RUN. It is neither heavy enough, or campy enough, or perhaps a switch to a more minor feel, an interesting weird scale descending line … or …. or … or … or something other than where the song actually went.
    Verse = high marks
    Chorus = low marks
    Net score = yeah probably about right, maybe a quarter of half point too high for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with you about the chorus. I was so drawn in by the verses because it’s so “not typical loud kpop” (lol) and then GOD way to ruin something special with that ear piercing high pitch “jungle”

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  5. Have you heard Weki Meki’s Sweet Dreams? It got that halloween song vibe and it absolutely deserved a music video, a hidden gems post about it would be amazing

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  6. After the first minute this reminds me a lot of post PDX101 Victon!
    I listened to this like 5 times in a row so I’m quite taken with it now, but I definitely wasn’t at first. Totally not what I was anticipating with a title like ‘Jungle’.

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  7. Can I just say this music video is the scariest I have ever seen in my entire life?
    And what is it trying to be? Blood, Sweat and Tears or Fake Love? Or the entire BTS videography?

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    • The video gave me pause as well. The video did not bring me joy or entertainment or anything positive feeling. I didn’t think of any particular group, other than the hyper “meaningful” deep dark more is more theme with new costumes every 8 seconds that pervades contemporary kpop videos. I covered the video up with other windows about half way through. (“Run!”)

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      • I disagree, I think Voodoo Doll by VIXX is the scariest I’ve ever seen in my entire life.

        Perhaps it does give Blood, Sweat and Tears vibes, but the concept is inspired by Dante’s Inferno. Even having not read that, as a lit student I’m automatically more drawn to these things.

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        • I guess it does try and fit into the hyper meaningful deep dark trend we’ve seen as of late
          But it’s evident from the drama of the song that the video isn’t exactly meant to be delightful either

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  8. I’m definitely addicted to this song…to be honest at the start the kind of weak, high-pitched ‘jungle’ felt like a bit of a let-down, and I wasn’t sure what to think of the instrumental bit after the first chorus?

    But the song had this rich tension in it that I still couldn’t get over. And I guess, as a Spooktober type of single, that the ‘run’ part added to the vibe.

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