[Review] Feel Good (SECRET CODE) – fromis_9

Next up on the comeback list this week is fromis_9, who makes their return for the first time since their FUN! comeback, one year and three months ago. Such a long gap between comebacks is not ideal, especially for a group who was starting to gain momentum following their Love Bomb and FUN! comebacks. However, as I always say on this blog, it is better late and than never. The group returns today with Feel Good (SECRET CODE), their third mini-album, The Little Society, and a eight-member lineup (as Seoyeon is sitting out of the promotions due to an injury).

Whilst Feel Good is track filled with funky guitar riffs (and hence complimenting current trends to a tee), the track is interestingly not as retro as I had hoped for. While I believe that fromis_9 would have one of the few female groups currently active that would have nailed the retro style and sound, Feel Good opts for a clean, modern and quite refreshing spin on the whole idea of a funky sound. There isn’t much going in the instrumentation apart from the funky guitar. In hindsight, it is rather plain (This was a thought when I first heard the song, but it has long disappeared from my mind now). However, that isn’t really an issue as the members really do help cover it up this barely noticeable flaw with their vocals. The rapping isn’t as great as I felt they wasted an opportunity to go down a more dynamic route for Feel Good, which could have been incorporated into the song via the actual rapping or instrumentally. But the vocals are really well thought out. They go with a lower tone for the verses, which I think gives the song a mature flair on top of the funky instrumentation. I really like the ‘Woo Hoo Hoo‘ that we get in the pre-chorus, for no other reason other than it felt classy. Once we got to the chorus, the members sang at a much higher tone, adding a subtle but appreciable amount of energy that doesn’t overwhelm the listener, complimenting the instrumentation. The chorus itself is also quite catchy, thanks to the vocal melodies and hooks.

The music video has nice visuals. But other than that and the choreography/closeup formula, it is incredibly plain to watch. I liked how they held back with the colours though, which suits the song style. But from what I have seen in KPOP music videos over the years, the producers could make the video a lot more dynamic and visually appealing whilst also complimenting the song’s style (as they have with the colour choices). A much strong balance between these two elements would have made the video more appealing to watch.

From what I can see in the music video, the choreography looks good. There isn’t anything ground breaking or new in it. But it works well with the music video. There seems to a mature feel to the choreography, as well. It is subtle, but it feels different for the group, especially since fromis_9 has been known for more cutesy and innocent concepts in the past.

Song – 8.5/10
Music Video – 6/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 7.7/10

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