Song Review: Fifty Fifty – Higher

Fifty Fifty - HigherJust days ago, I wrote about Fifty Fifty’s Lovin’ Me and wondering if there were other songs coming down the pike. Well, K-pop moves incredibly fast. Four days later and we have a new single and a debut mini album. Lovin’ Me’s gentle synthpop gives way to the loungy r&b of Higher and we finally get to see all four girls in action.

Taken alongside the recently released dance video for b-side track Log In, listeners may be confused when it comes to Fifty Fifty’s concept. Their music seems quite diverse so far – a real sampler platter of girl group styles. So far, I’m on team Lovin’ Me. Higher is pleasant pop fluff, but it’s a little low energy for my taste.

The song exists within K-pop’s narrow framework of “city pop,” smoothing the edges of that sub-genre and melding it with the coffeeshop vibes we usually hear in the springtime. Gentle strings waft over a mid-tempo beat as Fifty Fifty showcase their engaging vocals. There are some lovely harmonies to be found here and it’s nice to hear the group give a more mature, focused performance. This delivery adds to Higher’s dreamlike tranquility. It’s a pleasant experience, demanding little of the listener but rewarding an attention to detail. Its biggest asset is its chorus, which blossoms at the center of the track with a sense of blissful release. I’m not as compelled by the verses, but no element in Higher rocks the boat enough to interrupt its steady flow of serotonin.

Hooks 8
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7
 RATING 7.75

Grade: C+


14 thoughts on “Song Review: Fifty Fifty – Higher

  1. Of the many nugu girl group debuts of this year, this is the one I’ve found myself most attached to. Can’t explain it really, but this is whole mini-album just clicked with me. (Would recommend the b-side “Tell Me” for those who haven’t given it a listen!)

    Anyway, the main vocalist (I believe her name is Aran?), her tone reminds so much of Lee Su-hyun. Absolutely gorgeous.

    I know it’s such a crowded and competitive market, but they’ve already earned a fan in me, at least!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The past week has been a definite pickup almost back to the usual kpop pace.

    The song of the hour, here now: Its pleasant and pleasantly done. Uncomplicated. Also, I can see and hear 4 different voices.

    Its not compelling enough for me, but hey what do I know about chill pop.


  3. I just realized its city pop influence reading your review. Now I understand why the song drives me crazy, it’s my favorite genre. I can’t wait to see what else they come up with.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I am obsessed with how the chorus actually sounds like 4 different people singing together, it’s not only the same voice layered like some other songs do, it’s almost creepy in an enchanting way

    Liked by 3 people

  5. It’s hard for me to decide which song I like better between “lovin me” and “higher”. “lovin me” has more energy, but sometimes the arrangement in the chorus is very grating to me. “higher” is all around more pleasant (with a better music video) but the melodies arent as good

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I am also on team “Lovin’ Me” because that song trips at least two of my musical biases super hard, but I do also enjoy this one! It’s very clean-sounding – not cluttered up at all, and I like that. Fun little feel-good tune. I also really like those subtle harmonies popping up throughout the song. I’m quite enjoying all four voices in this group, and I think I’m going to have to go give their full EP a listen. Maybe right now actually.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. One of three debuts I’ve loved this year and probably my favorite. I haven’t had a song make me feel so floaty and dreamy since ONF’s The Dreamer (lol). The strings are a godsend. The husky/deeper vocalist in particular is impeccable. The descending melody in the chorus is exquisite.

    Liked by 1 person

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