Review

Song Review: Jeong Sewoon – Roller Coaster

Jeong Sewoon - Roller CoasterI can’t believe it’s been over a year since Jeong Sewoon’s last comeback! He’s been a reliable purveyor of gentle – often upbeat – pop music since his 2017 debut. He’s also the latest in a long string of Starship Entertainment acts to promote this year. Seriously, that agency has their act together. In the space of weeks, we’ve had comebacks from CRAVITY, IVE, Monsta X and now Jeong Sewoon – all while WJSN is getting backing for Queendom.

In this flurry of activity, a song as gentle as Roller Coaster is likely to fall by the wayside. For me, Sewoon’s material is at its best when he beefs up the arrangement and delivers something quite striking. Roller Coaster is much more subdued, following K-pop’s trend of easy, breezy city pop-inspired instrumentals. I’d call this more jazz (or even lounge?) than city pop, but the vibes are definitely similar. It’s a good match for Sewoon’s engaging vocals, but the track needs stronger melodies to truly stick.

In fact, Roller Coaster’s best moments don’t involve Sewoon at all! The brassy flourishes that cap off each chorus inject needed life to the production, pointing toward a bigger sound that’s followed by a more aggressive second verse. I also like the choir-like arrangement during the bridge. I just wish it had been tethered to a more memorable song. Too often, Roller Coaster threatens to become musical wallpaper – an idea at odds with its exciting, carnival-esque title.

Hooks 7
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7
 RATING 7.5

10 thoughts on “Song Review: Jeong Sewoon – Roller Coaster

  1. this is a 8.5-8.75 for me (to be fair my bias rating is a 10 so that definitely skews the total score a bit), i LOVE his acoustic easy-listening sound so this song fits right in his wheelhouse. and i love the brassy post-chorus its addictive as hell!

    the thing about him is that hes very consistent in releasing coffee-house fare and whether thats a good thing is entirely up to your discretion. for me it definitely is! but obviously to expect a dance-pop banger from him is out of the question

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  2. I really like this. The brass is great and the breeziness works really well for me. It’s good driving music for a sunny spring day.

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  3. Off topic but re: your first paragraph, didn’t Wonho also have a single or something recently? I know he’s technically with a Starship subsidiary, but it is very impressive that their acts have all had back-to-back comebacks so far.

    There are some people who I turn to almost exclusively for a pleasant easy listen, and Sewoon is one of them ever since I discovered him on Produce, so I’m very satisfied today. Sometimes I think I would like to see him tackle something drastically different or dramatic (what if he and Jaehwan – just using him as an example since they’re both friends and great singers lol – swapped songs like this and I Wouldn’t Look For You sometime? I mean I can’t really see it honestly but that would be a fun experiment) but he always delivers a fun song with a good melody and I’m glad for that!

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  4. NiCK YOU GOTTA LISTEN TO THIS!!!,Damn i literally just finished listening to this
    And my god I’m mind blowing that fact this song has only 400k views makes feels fucking absolutely angry 😡 it reminded a bit of nissy’s “eternal live” with the whole funky vibe and also the saxophone i gotta check out more of “morisaki win” stuff if it sounds something like this

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    • Ah yes, he’s great. I’ve seen him in a couple dramas too and he’s very charismatic.

      He used to be a part of the group Prizmax, who have some good songs as well, including this banger:

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      • Oh wow dance is right up my alley I’m really disappointed I didn’t know of them wondering if you checked any of morisaki’s music? Or have any Japanese solo artists I gotta listen to?

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        • For me, his solo work and Prizmax’s work is pretty hit and miss, but the album that Dance is from is quite good (sadly it was also their last).

          As far as other soloists, I’m thinking:
          Nissy (you already know him!)
          Miyavi
          Daichi Miura (start with the epic Be Myself)
          Sky-Hi
          Mamoru Miyano
          Tasuku Hatanaka

          and of course my all-time favorite… T.M.Revolution (but that’s going back to the 90’s and 00’s).

          Some of the currently buzzy acts that I don’t listen to as much are:
          Kenshi Yonezu
          Fujii Kaze
          Hoshino Gen

          That’s just the male side. I don’t listen to a lot of female soloists, but you can’t go wrong with Yurina Hirate, Reol or classics like Ayumi Hamasaki, Nanase Aikawa, Namie Amuro or Nami Tamaki.

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