Following the previous review for STAYC’s ASAP, I will be focusing on some releases which I should have posted reviews sooner for. Most of these reviews will be for songs released more recently which have garnered some sort of attention directly or indirectly. First up is OnlyOneOf’s libidO. It garnered some shocking attention since its release for one of the comeback’s components. I will delve into what that shocking element later on. But if you know, you know. libidO was released a month ago on 8 April 2021.
When libidO first popped onto my radar, I wasn’t sure what to think of the song. It was definitely intriguing when it came paired with the music video and performance. But on its own back then, I didn’t think much of it. I think I would have described as a blur (which still would be one of the words I would use to describe the song). But since the song’s release a month ago, I have checked it out a bit more and grown to liken its artiness. libidO thrives on percussion and a warped effect on the song’s melodies. Paired with OnlyOneOf’s whipsering and hushed vocals, libidO exudes a strong and hypnotic sensual atmosphere that feels unique in KPOP, especially in the current climate of retro resurgence. That being said, libidO also taps into the groovy side of music. But I feel that this isn’t the song’s main mechanism of reeling listeners in. I think the song’s whole sensual profile is what attacts people’s attention to its release. And this pretty much has me interested in the song as well. But the instrumental element of a song is only one component. While I really liked the aesthetic that the members bring through their vocals and rapping, libidO suffers from a lack of momentum on that front. The hush-hushed nature of their delivery really makes the song feel airy, which in turn doesn’t help push out a strong hook or melodies. As a result, the only memorable line I got from the song was the repetition of the song’s title, libidO. This why I mentioned that I felt the song would still be described as a blur. As I can only remember one line (well, word in this case) from the song, libidO felt like it was over before it got anywhere. But nonetheless, libidO is still a unique listen and one to check out if you are into aesthetics and artsy releases.
The music video for libidO was a surprise, and one that I had to rewatch a couple of times to make sure I was understanding it correctly. Given how conservative South Korea is, a video like libidO that shows LGBTQIA+ themes is rare. It isn’t unheard of, but it isn’t exactly everyday common. But I definitely applaud the members, the company and producers for pushing the boundaries with this music video and taking a bold risk. Aside from the LGBTQIA+ theme, I thought the music video was quite aesthetic. I really like the colour palette for this music video, with the grey filter being applied to the coloured scenes. I also really liked the choreography shots. The black and white really helps create a sleek and sensual atmosphere. THe opening shot for the music video showing the members on top of the white platform (which they shoot their choreography shots on) surrounded by the green foliage was a really striking image to begin with,
What was also really bold was the choreography. Once again, I applaud the members and the choreographer for pulling off this risky yet very striking choreography. I am all for creative freedom and liked how they really emphasised the sensual nature of the song with all those moves such as the sliding knees, the use of rope throughout the routine etc. The choreography has recieved some negative comments for going to far when it came to the bridge, with one member kneeling in a questionable position in front of another member. It was then followed up with hands on the crotch area. It may be explicit, but I don’t see it as an issue. It might be due to the fact that I was raised with Western media and so I am kind of sensistised to some of this stuff. However, the group has responded to concerns with a reasonable response, so check that out if you want to know the internal thought process of those behind the creative direction of this comeback/choreography.
Song – 7.5/10
Music Video – 9/10
Performance – 910
Overall Rating – 8.3/10