A K-pop act’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.
None of the b-sides on OnlyOneOf’s new album are nearly as polarizing as title track Skinz. I appreciate how they’ve stuck to their guns and chosen the weirdest song to promote. But in an alternate universe where the guys opted to go with something tamer, Gaslighting would be a solid choice.
The song is immaculately produced – an enduring hallmark of OnlyOneOf’s music. When the beat kicks in after a brief introduction, it has massive presence. I adore its bursts of distortion. Coupled with deep bass, the arrangement is fierce and threatening. This instrumental alone fulfills the promise of last year’s libidO. These intense soundscapes work well against the airy singing style of the members. It’s a great contrast that turns the atmosphere all the way up.
If anything, I wish Gaslighting’s central drop was paired with a stronger hook. This segment feels unusually empty, though there are still interesting elements at play. At just under three minutes, there isn’t much room for the kind of development that might have shot this song into the stratosphere. Instead, much of Gaslighting relies on that fantastic beat. OnlyOneOf manage to turn an assortment of shouts and grumbles into something quite thrilling, and that’s down to the production’s ebb and flow of tension. They have a knack for infusing the simplest of hooks with tons of personality. That idiosyncratic appeal will likely help this track hold up longer than many of its similarly-structured peers.