Yesterday, I reviewed Blueming, IU’s official comeback to the music industry and stage. And this song, along with every other song on the album has been rising to the top end of the digital charts in Korea, once again proving her power in the industry. In the Blueming review, I mentioned that IU had released another music video for Above The Time, which is observed as the follow-up to the storyline presented to us in You & I (IU’s 2012 hit). Before reviewing today’s comebacks, let’s have a dive into this song and video.
Listening to the start of the Above The Time, you are given the impression that it is going to be a ballad. We get an orchestral instrumental during the first verse and chorus, which really sounds amazing. This style is something we have heard IU do before and it makes her vocals breathtaking. After the first chorus, a drumbeat is incorporated into the song, giving hint that the song might not be as linear as we thought. And it still manages to pair well with her vocals. The biggest twist comes during the bridge of the track. It starts off like an orchestral instrumental break. But it switches it up completely with a folksy piece. It is a complete change-up but it manages to click into place without a hitch, which is rather intriguing. The two styles (folksy and orchestral ballad) end up merging together for a second before we go back to the ballad roots of the song. It is a rollercoaster to listen to. But you will not be disappointed if you listen to it. I particularly liked the ending, as it felt like another mini-rollercoaster in the song. The track slows down and then reincorporates a dramatic piece to give it that epic finish to an awesome ballad-like track.
As mentioned previously, the music video brings back the storyline in You & I (the one with the sleeping guy and the IU travelling through time with a goose to wake him up). Well, the same actor (Lee Hyun Woo) returns to reprise his role as the guy. Since waking up, he has been living in a similar building to which he was asleep. The calendar on the bookshelf points to the 31st of December 2019, which is the same date that IU travelled to the future in order for him to wake up. And so from the moment he woke up, he had been awaiting the arrival of IU. He shows us his wrist, which contains the clock face that IU had drew on his wrist in You & I (which might be a hint to the particular time). In preparation for her return, she drops a goose feather from the frozen goose in You & I, which started to bring Lee Hyun Woo’s memory back of the time before his deep sleep (i.e the bright scenes in which Lee Hyun Woo and IU were dancing), which results in his emotional breakdown. I assume that IU did this to not cause him any pain during the long wait. Not exactly sure how the clock face on his wrist disappeared but it became a picture of a flower on his hand (which IU had drawn in the past), signalling the that his memories were, in fact, true and that it was time for him to find a way to IU. This leads to the ladder and paper boat that I am hoping reunites Lee Hyun Woo and IU after all this time. That is my interpretation of the video but some details can be incorrectly interpreted. But it is amazing that You & I got its sequel, as I had never expected this actually occurs.
Song – 10/10
Music Video – 10/10
Overall Rating – 10/10