Also making their comeback on Tuesday this week was WINNER, who returns with their fourth mini-album Holiday and their latest single, I LOVE U. This comeback follows a two hiatus for the group, where members Yoon and Mino focused on solo activities while JINU and Hoony enlisted into the military. Their last comeback as a group occurred in 2020 with Hold and Remember.
I LOVE U is a fun song that I did not expect to like as much as I did. Not too sure why I didn’t have much expectation for this comeback, as I tend to dive into the news of a comeback and check out teasers to help build an expectation, especially for a group of WINNER’s calibre. But I guess being busy the last few weeks have gotten in the way of that. What is great about I LOVE U is that it is a great distraction from all of that. The vibrant energy that is exuded from I LOVE U‘s pop like background was very much straight forward in a no nonsense way, infectious and enjoyable. This mixture of retro, funky, pop and brightness made the entire 3 minute run of the song very appealing. I like how the vocals of Yoon and JINU are also quite vibrant throughout, matching the energy of the song and adding more vibrant layers to the song. The melodies in the chorus were memorable. At first, the exclamatory ‘I LOVE U Ooh‘ felt off putting and shrilly. But the power of multiple listens has helped it catch on, and they are now my favourite part of I LOVE U. As for the rappers, they add quite a playful and fun dynamic through their rapping. My favourite in particular is when they alternated during their rap verse. I LOVE U follows the now standard rule that YG releases need an anthem or chanty like sequence. For I LOVE U, I liked the wholesome feel of this sequence in the final chorus, and how it was backed up by one more round of the actual chorus. Slightly different to what we usually get in a YG song, but still in that same frame of mind.
Matching with the song, the music video is also quite fun. Everything felt like a show, from the start with the intro introducing us to the return of the WINNER show, to the behind the scenes shots of show’s studio, to the retro performance set up we get at the start. We also get a glimpse of their change rooms and make up rooms, and also some of the shows being shot (i.e. the crime and romance shows). It is a lighthearted concept that makes me smile and goes a long way.
Choreography-wise, I quite liked it. It matches the fun and playful vibes of the song. The chorus bit looks great and I liked how they mimicked hugs during that part. The final chorus, with the swinging heads which I am sure was at one point a TikTok trend, and the change up with the arms was a really fun way to finish the performance.
Song – 9/10
Music Video – 8.5/10
Performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 8.9/10