[Review] PLAY – LUCY

LUCY is nominated for Best Band Performance for their PLAY release in the 2022 KPOPREVIEWED Awards. Support LUCY, and your other favourite artists, songs and performances by clicking here to vote today!

There are a few releases that I have nominated in the 2022 KPOPREVIEWED Awards this year that I have yet to review, and I am hoping to review some of them before the year ends. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to review all of them by the end of the year, so apologies in advance if I don’t post a review for your favourite group or song. First up is LUCY, who is a four member male band that I first reviewed last year as part of the 2021 KPOPREVIEWED Awards rush at the end of last year, but the band has been active since 2020. This year, I have nominated them for Best Band Performance once again, but for their 2022 single, PLAY. It is the title track from the band’s first studio album release, Childhood, which was released in August of this year.

PLAY starts off with a soothing and soft band background that almost mimics a soft ballad or a very soft pop rock track. When we get to the chorus, the instrumentation amplifies. But it is more of a mild amplification that retains the sentiment and soothing tone that started off PLAY, whilst also keeping the track light and airy. At the same time, the amplification also brings a burst of brightness to the song that helped give PLAY a bit more to talk about and I found to be quite appealing and enjoyable. The second verse and chorus repeats exactly what we heard in the first verse and chorus combination, but we do get a brief second of children laughter before the second chorus (which complements the meaning behind the song – more of this in the next section of the review). I liked the ‘echo’ that comes into play during the bridge of PLAY, giving the sense of depth. I also enjoyed the inclusion of the children’s “Na Na Na” and more laughter. This time around, it fits into the larger picture that is PLAY. In addition to the band instrumentation, LUCY’s unique addition of violin is present throughout PLAY, but I wished the violin was a bit stronger and more upfront. This would really allow LUCY shine even brighter. As for the vocals, I really like the nasally tone that the members brought to the song. And this gives PLAY a memorable tinge. The melodies unfortunately didn’t have the same effect. They were pleasant, but they just were not enough to make PLAY more memorable. Overall, a really nice track. Some improvements could be helping in bumping my PLAY‘s appeal. But still a great listen nonetheless.

PLAY presents the message to embrace your childhood, even as an adult. And that is what we see happen in the video. The video features a typical Korean salaryman, who could be in his late 20s or 30s, and whose life is quite grey and dull (which is the literally theme of the start and end of the video). When he slides down the slide at the start of the video, he enters a world full of colour and brightness. But he is only wearing black, representing his detached and deflated mood and feelings. Whatever he does, wherever he goes, he just can’t seem to get out of this mindset. And I don’t blame him. Adulting pressures are definitely hard and not advertised. On the train, he is thrown side to side and squashed by people. At work, he is scolded by his manager. At work parties, he is left with a burnt piece of meat despite being the one cooking it. When he boards the taxi, he wants to be in his own world. And while at the shops, he is emotionless and dejected from the world. But in the midst of all of that, we also see a child version of him, who embraces his youth and childhood, and the world instantly looks better. Sometimes we just need to think back to our childhood to remind ourselves of what life used to be. The child him is running around and having fun, interacting with the band. He is having parties with his co-workers and even enjoying his taxi ride. In the end, the salaryman slides down the slide, returning us to the beginning of the video with the grey colour scheme. He still looks sad and deflated, but you can hear a lady call out to him (presumably his mother), and a smile presents on his face soon after. And I quite like this conclusion, that it is a reminder that at the end of the day, whilst we are all adults, we are still a child because we are someone’s child. So embrace the childhood, as to many of us, it is inherently part of our lives already. Quite a nice and pleasant music video, with a beautiful reminder at the end.

Song – 8/10
Music Video – 9/10
Overall Rating – 8.4/10

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