I’ve always been a proponent of keeping K-pop weird, but sometimes these agencies come up with ideas that are better left on the cutting room floor. Perhaps inspired by the legendary (for all the wrong reasons) A.I. group Eternity, new debut Superkind has a “virtual idol” among their ranks. Maybe it’s my age showing, but I don’t understand the purpose of this. Idols are already styled within an inch of their lives, to the point where they barely look real. In this setting, what does a virtual idol actually bring? Beyond the ability to work forever, that is…
Superkind’s Watch Out is a decent (if generic) boy group track that would have worked just fine with four members. The addition of the virtual “Saejin” is an awkward distraction from a visual standpoint. The technology just isn’t there yet, making the music video a real cringe-fest. Seajin’s “vocals” are on the track itself, though they blend in with the other members. I half-expected (half-desired?) his lines to be delivered in a monotonous computer voice – or at the very least the sound of a dial-up modem!
I guess what I’m trying to say is, if you’re going to go for a concept this out-there, you might as well push it all the way. Instead, Watch Out fades into the K-pop background. I like its driving percussion and touches of electro bass, but the song doesn’t have much of a hook. The melodies are a bit one-note, never peaking in any notable moment. But on the plus side, the non-virtual members seem to have a lot of potential. How long will it be before Saejin gains emotional awareness and usurps all their lines in Terminator: Rise Of The Machines style?