[Review] Serious – Park Ji Hoon

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A month overdue, but here is my review for Park Ji Hoon’s latest song titled Serious. Serious was released at the end of last month (28 October – to be exact) and is featured on Park Ji Hoon’s fifth mini-album, Hot&Cold, since his solo debut. This is also his second comeback of the year, following the likes of Gallery and My Collection back in August.

To be honest, Serious is one of the releases that somehow slipped my radar. I do remember it being teased and its release. But I haven’t listened to the song at all. Tracking my listening pattern through my Weekly KPOP Charts, it appears that I only ‘discovered’ Serious two weeks back. So, I am kind of going into it with a fresh mind today. But there might be a reason why I had only ‘discovered’ the song so many weeks after it release. Even when I do sit down to listen to it for this review, I find Serious to be a little plain. There really isn’t anything memorable within the song. The instrumentals of Serious falls into the R&B/pop territory. While this combination can be innovative and creative, Serious just isn’t a good case for that potential. I did get a moody sense from it, which I think compliments the lyrics of the song, and I did like the sleek start. But other than that, Serious was your standard backing to a dance song. Hook-wise, there was a bit of repetition in Serious, which helps build the song’s momentum to an extent. But they don’t stand out as much. Like the instrumentation, there isn’t really anything fresh or new that blows my mind or peaks my interest. Similarly, melody-wise, not a big fan of what the song did. I feel the strongest aspect of Serious was the vocal work. There were some good vocals in the song thanks to the slight raspy nature of Park Ji Hoon’s voice, and I did like the pre-chorus rapping and the momentum that we got out of that. The one vocal aspect that I disagree with is the switch to rap-singing in the chorus. its fine in the verses, but I just didn’t like how it came to be to the chorus. Overall, Serious is a lacking and unmemorable release, and ultimately a letdown following the likes of Gallery.

While the song might have not blown me away, Park Ji Hoon in this video did. Park Ji Hoon shows off some serious acting chops in this music video, and its so good that it makes this music video so much better. From what I see in this video, I think Park Ji Hoon’s character recently broke up with his partner, which leads him to this emotional state he is in throughout the video. He is locked in a hypothetical room. One moment he was writing a message in the bottle to his partner (I am assuming to ask for forgiveness), with the room being peaceful and lightened up. The next moment, it is trashed and the message in the bottle that he originally had written had gone missing. It appears that there is two sides of Park Ji Hoon in the video (represented by the scenes lightened up with the white light vs. the scenes lightened up a red light). I think the one side really wants to make amends (the white light), while the other side doesn’t want to. It got to the point where the glass bottle was ‘laid to rest’ in the boot of the car, as if it was kidnapped (which might explain the missing message above). The yellow light at the end seems to represent that Park Ji Hoon comes to terms with his emotions, and the sorry that we do seem is acceptance that he was the cause of the breakdown of their relationship and that there won’t be any chance of going back to what they were, even though he is ‘Serious‘ about going back. Serious guesses on what is happening and I could be very wrong, but I find the music video to be quite interesting.

The choreography is plain for me, but the entire performance still felt fitting for the song. It did bring to my attention that Serious doesn’t have much of a break in it and Park Ji Hoon is constantly moving and singing at the same time without any seconds to breathe, so I give him some points for that. But the moves don’t really impress me.

Song – 6/10
Music Video – 9/10
Performance – 6.5/10
Overall Rating – 7/10

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