Song Review: Jay B (GOT7) – go UP

Jay B - go UPWhich benevolent K-pop god did I appease to get new music from Sweetune and Thomas Troelsen on the same day?? These are two of my all-time favorite producers, and neither churns out all that much material these days. In Troelsen’s case, his work has been paired with an unlikely star: GOT7’s Jay B. When I think of Jay B, I picture understated cool. I’m surprised to hear him let his hair down on the funky go UP.

go UP is a quintessential funk track, stripping the genre down to its bones. It’s a big, bounding beat and simple, sing-along hook. It’s also a convincing ode to funk songs of the past, from James Brown all the way up to Prince and Bruno Mars. I’d expect nothing less of Troelsen’s production. He imbues the instrumental with a satisfying crunch. Stabs of brass compete with unyielding percussion. The arrangement snaps in a way that’ll surely get your head moving. go UP doesn’t need to switch or drop out as it unfolds because its central ingredients are so pleasing on their own.

This instrumental is clearly the star of the show because there’s not much of a song thrown over the top. Jay B rides the beat, occasionally breaking free with a jolt of falsetto or excited ad-lib. He’s buttressed by backing vocals that feel as if they could have been pulled straight from the seventies. This sound is immensely nostalgic, even if its roots stretch back before my time. In this way, go UP succeeds by targeting its influences directly and never straying from their single-minded potency.

Hooks 8
 Production 9
 Longevity 9
 Bias 9
 RATING 8.75


14 thoughts on “Song Review: Jay B (GOT7) – go UP

  1. This is great. I enjoy Bruno Mar’s take on funk and this even takes its inspiration from it, but it just has a little more teeth. Troelsen’s production just has bite funk and shuffle.
    It’s so good.

    Jayb is also a worthy star and I ope this gets some traction!! Really enjoyed, perked up my morning.


  2. Holy crap!

    OK, for real its a Bruno Mars-style production interpolated with James Brown with a Prince flair, and not really kpop, but I will take it anyway. Get up, get on up!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Highly disagree with this one. I tend to have a soft spot for songs like this but this really missed the mark for me. While the influences are clearly there this is such an uninspired piece with too much going on on the chorus and tasteless vocal inflections throughout the whole song.

    JB has always been one of my favorite voices in GOT7 but I’m highly disappointed on the EP/mini album (whatever you wanna call it). While I tend to prefer more upbeat songs, this EP really fell flat with very uninspired songwriting and weak instrumental choices. “The Way We Are” is the only okayish song for me and even so I’m not particularly fond of it.

    I didn’t expect to like JB’s slower takes more than his upbeat takes but as of now, that’s where I stand. Hoping the next one is better.


  4. I wish I liked this as much as you do, Nick. I mean it has a neat instrumental and some strong pieces, but the most compelling part of this is by far the falsetto part and we don’t get much of it. The song is also a bit too slow for its runtime, at the end of it all I was left feeling a little underwhelmed. Low 8s for me to be honest. But I dunno. I’ll have to listen to this maybe even more, but Icarus is outcompeting it for my headphone space.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love funk, so there’s no way I wasn’t going to like it, but it doesn’t go beyond that. Nothing in particular is wrong with it, there just aren’t many standout moments and the hook is quite weak.

    I’m gonna give it a 7.5. Who knows, maybe it could grow on me like previous “simple” songs (INVU, Fearless, etc).

    P.S. In other news, I’m actually quite excited for the new Crush single, “Rush Hour” ft. j-hope. It seems to be going for a similar sound, just with a bit more flavor.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Exactly. The video is vibrant and fun, Jay B. sells it, but there’s just not that unifying groove there. You start to get into it and then something takes you out of it.


      • Wow, I gotta disagree.

        For me, the groove pretty much *is* the song, and it stays consistently funky from start to finish. We’re definitely hearing different things, though. Music is so crazy that way!

        Liked by 1 person

        • I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it feels like a lot of guitar fills and intros are strung together, and i keep expecting a melody or at least a deeper bass groove to come in. It’s not quite choppy enough, and it’s too choppy, I guess. It doesn’t quite move and it doesn’t quite irrit-tain.

          Exactly – music is so crazy! *adds Lay and NMIXX to playlists*


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