Review

Song Review: Stray Kids – Scars

Stray Kids - ScarsStray Kids aren’t offering any respite for fans. Their newest album bore music video after music video, blurring the line between title track and b-side. Now, we have a new Japanese single. I’m sure hardcore followers are pleased by this rapid-fire blitz, but the sheer bulk of releases threatens of overwhelm us bloggers!

Either way, Scars is a sturdy – if unremarkable – addition to the group’s discography. They can rattle off this sort of emotional, mid-tempo, vaguely EDM track in their sleep, and there are already superior Stray Kids songs in this style. As regular Bias List readers know, I tend to prefer music that raises my spirits or energy. Songs I’d consider “mopey” or “angsty” don’t often find their way on my playlist. I may deliver a positive review, only to have the track slip from memory hours later. Scars fits in this category. The song is well-performed and well-constructed, but nothing about it makes me yearn for another listen.

Scars opens with a striking melody supported by minimal instrumentation. This puts full focus on the vocal, making for a compelling intro. From here, we move into the rap verse. Stray Kids are dynamic rappers, but I wish they would modulate their energy and flow for this song. They don’t always need to shout their lines to impart emotion, and Scars could have done with a steadier build. I’d say the same about the chorus, which buries the hook in too many layers of dull synth. The production even throws in a firework sound effect for good measure. But when it comes down to it, there’s not enough flesh on the song’s bones. Scars’ strongest moments are its most stripped back.

 Hooks 7
 Production 7
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7
 RATING 7.25

12 thoughts on “Song Review: Stray Kids – Scars

  1. Can’t lie I found it hilarious hearing Changbin and Hyunjin rapping all aggressive on that somber sounding beat. But yeah can’t say I liked this one. It got that classic soft, minimal verses with the explosive EDM chorus formula except the verses feel dull more than anything and the chorus feel extremely anticlimactic. This feels like a track I’d hear from a Nugu group circa 2017. In the 6s for me.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Shrug. Gonna go listen to “CHEESE” again. Only that’s a lie, because I’m actually listening to a rather nice, inoffensive EP “Five Love Stories” that came out last week from a soloist I’d never heard of before named Yu Seung Woo, and it sounds exactly like one would expect it to sound, if you’re into that kind of thing, which I am from time to time. B-side “Falling” has a really lovely oboe part. The whole thing gives me vaguely Meredith Wilson vibes, which I wasn’t expecting today and am quite liking.

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  3. “I’m sure hardcore followers are pleased by this rapid-fire blitz, but the sheer bulk of releases threatens of overwhelm us bloggers!”. Lol, so true. My epic strategy: Just don’t review the songs, most of them are meh lol.

    Besides, your reviews completely say what needs to be said on those songs, so I let it be like the lazy bum I am haha.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yeah I definitely agree that there’s nothing about the song that makes me want to listen to it again, despite vaguely enjoying the song when it was playing. I do often playlist songs like this because I recall enjoying it, so it goes in, but I will never go search it out and the only time I will hear it again will be when it comes on in a random shuffle 😅

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  5. Yeah, this song seems like a throwaway track, especially compared to “ALL IN,” their last Japanese single. But I really enjoyed the video. It’s fun to get some more footage from the post-apocalyptic NOEASY-verse.

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  6. OK, I will say it. Holy Trap McTrapperstein, Batman!

    How much trap do you want on your chorus? Yes.

    Also, Shouty McShoutface.
    Oh, dammit, he starting shouting at me again.

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    • I know you’re probably not a fan of this song but I just wanted to point out to you that Changbin’s opening line in Thunderous is more or less “They call me Shouty McShoutface”

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