[Review] Ring The Alarm – KARD

KARD’s last comeback was way back in 2020 with GUNSHOT. And following that, J.Seph enlisted into the military and the group practically went on a mini hiatus. For the other three members (BM, Jiwoo and Somin) solo promotions and activities were their primary focus up until this year, when it was confirmed that J.Seph would return and KARD would return as a group for a new comeback. KARD officially dropped Re: and the title track Ring The Alarm back at the end of June of this year.

For me, KARD always excelled with songs where they went hard and powerful. Ring The Alarm unfortunately didn’t live up to that expectation for me. And this might be the reason to why I have been holding off on reviewing Ring The Alarm. I want to like the song, given that it is KARD. But the best I can come with even after a month is that Ring The Alarm was an okay song, with decent melodic hooks and a nice ring overall. However, I feel like the weaker aspects of the song ironically speaks the most to me. The moombahton with rhythmical bass instrumental was quite weak and doesn’t really bring much excitement to the table. If I had to describe it, I would liken it to a dull colour. Though I do appreciate that the summer vibes that comes from it. The members themselves don’t add much to the song. Rather, they blend into the dull background and they don’t give much zing to the song. I know they could have gone harder to just give Ring The Alarm more body and intensity. That being said, I did find manage to identify a few aspects that had potential, but they are very minor sequences/details and are easily passed. Some examples include the start of the song with the alarms and bass and the ‘Move your body‘ chant that both BM and Jiwoo contributed to. The part in J.Seph’s rap sequence where the instrumental was minimised continues to play in my head and I liked the minimalistic aspect of said part. Even the slight amplification at the very end which gave Ring The Alarm outro a slight taste of intensity was sufficient in winning me over. But as I said, these are small details and not the larger sequences that make up the other 98% of the song. I think it is safe to say that I wanted more. Simply because, by the time Ring The Alarm wrapped up, I was left unsatisfied.

Part of me thinks the music video follows the song down the dull path. However, upon closer inspection for this review, I find parts of the music video to be striking. Certain solo shots for some member had a boldness to them, which I liked. For example, Somin’s red heart scenes, Jiwoo’s diamond set, BM’s mountain climb scenes caught my attention. But apart from that, the music video wasn’t memorable and I couldn’t figure out what was happening (if there was even a plotline to the video).

The choreography for this comeback was actually quite good. Even though the song’s dullness softness the choreography a fair bit compared to the group’s past performances, I liked that KARD managed to showcase their usual style in the performance. J.Seph really stood out for me in this routine, as he puts a bit more hip-hop energy into his execution, which makes captivating to watch. The outro sequence also had a neat bounce to it.

Song – 6/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 6.7/10

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