Following the group’s disbandment, B.A.P’s Moon Jongup made his solo debut last year with Headache. I didn’t think much of the song on its release day, but it ended up being one of my biggest growers of the year. Loose, funky tracks like this don’t always get the attention they deserve. However, it’s a sound that goes down easy and tends to stick around longer than expected. For Us, Jongup has maintained Headache’s general vibe, taking it in a trendier direction.
You can find this minimalist, percussive style filling the charts in almost any country you visit. Take a catchy bassline, add a touch of hi-hats and pull in some rhythm guitar and you’ve got the recipe for a 2021-era hit. But eventually, this bubble is going to burst, and it already takes something special for a song like this to stand out. Us is a great spotlight for Jongup’s dancing, and its percolating groove will definitely get your head nodding, but it lacks that extra spark.
My major issue with Us is that it’s basically one idea repeated for three minutes. The hook is catchy and melds well with the overall rhythm. But, I would have loved to hear a moment of contrast within the melody – something that pokes out from the groove to create a shot of interest. This nearly happens during the song’s final minute, when the rhythm grows more robust as guitar enters the fray. But, most of Us feels too cool to fully lodge in memory – like a stylish soundtrack you’d hear in a boutique. Even as I’m bopping along, I can’t help but long for a grittier beat or more dynamic vocal.