With the big post of the week out the way, it is time to return to the usual programme of reviews. And there is a lot to cover this week. For this post, I will be looking at the long-awaited return of Ailee, who returned on Wednesday with Don’t Teach Me and her third studio-length album, Amy. This is Ailee first release since the pre-release single Make Up Your Mind from earlier on in the year, which is also featured on this album. This release also marks her first major release under THE L1VE, which is also home to Wheein (of Mamamoo).
Don’t Teach Me delves into the old swing genre with its brassy and old-style instrumental that just has this golden yet vintage glow. You will very much know that I enjoy brass elements, especially when it is used in upbeat applications. And so Don’t Teach Me ticks that box instantly. When the song hits the chorus, the instrumental makes me want to get up and dance. I had to refrain from doing so, or else there would be no review! What makes Don’t Teach Me even better is Ailee herself. It has been a while since we heard a powerful display of vocals from Ailee, and she just takes Don’t Teach Me to the next level. At the start of the song, Ailee’s vocals (paired with minimal piano) added suspense to the song and intrigued me into listening further to Don’t Teach Me. When we get to the choruses, Ailee really throws powerful vocals at us, as we get to the end of the segment. This naturally adds definition and oomph to the song that just takes the song to the next level. I think the song could have used some more interesting hooks. The ‘Please Don’t Teach Me‘ hook that follows the second and third choruses felt somewhat one-dimensional and didn’t really feel like it matched the rest of the song. It worked well, but I think Don’t Teach Me would have been a vastly better song with something bolder and punchy. But overall, Don’t Teach Me is a fantastic comeback from Ailee. It has been a while since we heard from her in this light and it was definitely satisfying to finally get something so.
Unfortunately, the music video didn’t fare as well as the song. While the setting, outfits (and damn, does Ailee look great throughout this video) and concept match the song and its lyrics wonderfully, I found the video to be dry. Essentially, the video is about Ailee making a statement to ‘all the boys who think they can control a woman’ and hence makes all the heads turn in her direction. I wished they did something more with all those people in that ballroom, that would have made the video a bit more interesting. However, there was one ballroom segment which I thought was pretty cool. At the start of the final chorus, Ailee’s vocals and energy broke a mirror and statue in time with the music. It was a clever and fun nod to both the message of the song/video and Ailee’s powerfulness.
The performance itself was quite good. There isn’t anything really special about the performance, but I liked that it was well-fitted to the song and had an element of fun to it as well. Ailee offset the lack of something special with her live vocals, which is still something to be in awe of.
Song – 9/10
Music Video – 6.5/10
Performance – 7/10
Overall Rating – 7.9/10