Review

Buried Treasure: Super Junior – Burn The Floor

A K-pop group’s title track isn’t always the best song on their album, even if it’s the one most people will hear. Sometimes, b-sides deserve recognition too. In the singles-oriented world of K-pop, I want to spotlight some of these buried treasures and give them the props they deserve.


It seems a little silly to call Super Junior’s Burn The Floor a “buried” treasure. After all, it was revealed months ago via a pre-release performance and is still being promoted alongside title track House Party. But without a proper music video, this is the slot the song falls into on The Bias List.

Either way, I wanted to write about Burn The Floor because I think it should have been the album’s title track. Its general sound seems to fit the concept of Renaissance much better, and the dramatic arrangement practically begs for a visual component. Plus, there’s no jarring breakdown thrown into its middle! Truth be told, I’m sure I’ll come around to House Party’s weird trap PSA eventually. I tend to be “all bark and no bite” in that way.

But, I’m also a sucker for orchestral sounds in pop songs. Burn The Floor builds itself around a symphonic backdrop, opening with strings that soon give way to a more percussive instrumental. This song’s first verse is my favorite, as its sparse arrangement allows for great spotlight on the guys’ vocals. The chorus brings the bombast as a choir of voices join Super Junior. My only quibble is those hi hat rolls. K-pop producers: these don’t have to be part of every single song just because you can throw them in. It reminds me of the persistent tropical synth squiggle trend a few years ago. And, the hi-hats are especially jarring here because their tinny sound contrasts greatly with the lushness of the orchestration. Their presence nearly overshadows everything else.

That production choice aside, Burn The Floor swells with great pomp and circumstance. I love how the backing vocals become more dramatic as the song goes on, and the layered chorus works as a fantastic centerpiece. But, I keep going back to the simplicity of that opening verse. The melody here is so pretty, and harnesses a sense of refinement that feels like the soundtrack to a true Super Junior renaissance.

 Hooks 9
 Production 9
 Longevity 8
 Bias 9
 RATING 8.75


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7 thoughts on “Buried Treasure: Super Junior – Burn The Floor

  1. I was waiting for you to review this, because I knew this would a buried treasure. it really is such a amazing song and the performance is amazing🥺

    Like

  2. Attaching the dance video

    So here is the thing. I love this song. But what is it? Is it really single material? It is so theatrical, so much drama, it doesn’t fit categories easily other than its in Korean and it sounds like pop music so it is kpop. To me as a long time elf its a marrying of the “Evanesce” look with a contemporary sound. Then add in a hefty dose of doing something a little more more just because they can.

    To be honest I didn’t even hear the trap beats for the first dozen times, I was too busy watching. May I also point out that everyone is singing, even the designated rappers.

    So to speak to the production, it is great. This is what I mean by doing more with less.
    One light box, a couple of handheld bulbs, and a whole page of lighting cues. In other hands, this could turn out like a high school amateur production, but it works out well here. The more you re-watch it, the more clever things to do with light bulbs you see in the choreography. The full page of light cues sure helps. This is not the dance to bring on the ordinary music shows where they are highly skilled at camera work but the lighting is fairly mundane. This dance requires either a pre-recording like this with post-production to knit three or four parts together, or a concert arena stage where there are several people at the lighting board.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Oooh this is very different! I love the orchestral sound as well- and I like that it’s not just limited to a dramatic opening line or a one-instrument riff. Makes me miss classical concerts even more though.

    Like

    • Indeed. Friends don’t let friends let Eunhyuk pick the song.

      (… … I don’t know if it was Eunhyuk, but seems plausible)

      Like

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