I can’t quite get a grasp on Pink Fantasy, and I’m not just talking about their weird “bunny mask” schtick (which is getting creepier and creepier, by the way). Across their small discography, the girls have returned with a number of different concepts, often jarring in their contrast. I think the most successful of these was the dramatic Fantasy from 2019, which saw the girls adopting a theatrical style not too dissimilar from Dreamcatcher. Since then, their work has been a middling collection of familiar K-pop tropes, and new pre-release single Lemon Candy (레몬사탕) is no different.
Apparently, this song wasn’t even meant to be promoted at first. And, that becomes quickly evident as it plays on. Lemon Candy lacks a strong hook. It feels aimless in construction, drifting from one segment to the next without landing any real punches. The tempo is relatively inert, hulking forward with a glittering stomp that never builds toward anything dynamic. The chorus brings some oomph to the track, but the melody just isn’t there. Coupled with a performance that unnecessarily embraces aegyo, the whole song feels at odds with itself.
To Pink Fantasy’s credit, this is essentially a b-side paired with a music video. They’ve proven themselves to be more engaging performers than this, so it’s best to think of Lemon Candy as an odd little blip in the road. Still, I wish that the girls were given the chance to fully explore a style rather than flit between sounds and concepts. It’s time to rip off that bunny mask and figure out who you really are, Pink Fantasy!