[Double Review] Workaholic + 25 – BOL4

Another comeback this week is from BOL4, who made their return with two music videos from their latest mini-album, TWO FIVE. Both Workaholic and 25 serves as the title tracks for this release. And these are two tracks I am excited to review (as I have a lot to positive things to say about the two tracks already!)  We last saw the duo earlier this year through their Bom and Stars On Me double-track promotions (for those who may have missed these ladies).

Let’s start off with Workaholic.  This is probably their most mature sound yet, which caught me by surprise (given how the duo’s songs are usually incorporate happy thoughts and bright elements). Despite that initial surprise, I actually find this to be a really cool song. It is all about wanting to live a different life but unable to due to the demands of one’s current life. Something that I am sure we would relate to in some degree. Jiyoung’s voice sounds really nice in the track. But I really liked how the autotune gave the song a needed boost in the edgy department. I also like the use of guitars in the song. I can hear how Jiyoon will be incorporated into the song, but I also like the use of electric guitars to kick the song up a notch towards the end. Overall, I like the new direction that the duo opted for in this song.

25 is a little different from Workaholic. It is actually the sound that I had expected from the duo. There is a subtle bright and upbeat atmosphere to it, which is why the track sounds like it aligns to the duo’s discography more than Workaholic did. While I don’t usually like songs that keep a consistent instrumental, 25 has the opposite effect on me (despite falling into that category) to an extent. The instrumental didn’t buildup at all, which allowed me to focus purely on Jiyoung’s vocals and harmonies throughout the song (which is the standard huskiness). I did like the melody and I did think the chorus was catchy. But the chorus felt masked by the rest of the song and blended in a little too much for my liking. The song talks about the quarter-life crisis that people have at the age of 25, which I am nearing very soon.

I like how the storyline of the video reflects the lyrics in Workaholic. Essentially, we see Jiyoung playing the character who wants a better life but is stuck in her job. She drinks as a way out and this causes her problems at work. And the whole thing just repeats itself. In the end, she decides that she has had enough. Changing her outfit and causing a mess at the workplace, she is joined by the comedic relief of the video (fellow member Jiyoon) to end the video standing in the midst of a lot of pyrotechnics. I really liked how they made Jiyoung look so much mature in the video and the greyness was very fitting to make things look draining.

As for 25, the video is a lot more colourful. I think this plays in well with the song’s meaning though. The colourfulness seems to reflect the years before 25, while the emotions they are conveying throughout the video shows that quarter-life crisis. Though, I think the message that the video is showing is that everything is okay, especially if you have a friend to hang out with during this time. Jiyoung’s and Jiyoon’s friendship is quite cute in the video.

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

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

[Review] Wind – BOL4

Over the next few weeks, I will be attempting to catch up on the many reviews in which I have missed out. BOL4 is in the midst of their promotions for their latest mini-album. The mini-album has two title tracks, Travel and Wind. I have already reviewed Travel (and Starlight) when it first came out. Wind‘s music video was released later on and I have been waiting for its release before writing a full review.

Wind is a ballad that mixes with BOL4’s indie sound. The way Jiyoung sings this song is pretty childish, however, I mean that in a good way. It felt like a child singing it, which gave the song innocence and a delicate vibe. Her vocals are good, so don’t misunderstand my initial statements with her vocals. The only issue that I have with the song it is quite dry and doesn’t progress much. The instrumental started off with just a very subtle orchestral sound and repetitive triangle tinging in the background. It does increase in volume as it goes on (ever so slightly). However, it wasn’t enough to give the song that momentum. Instead, I try my best to stay focus on the song. I personally don’t understand why it is a title track, as it feels like a standard sidetrack on the album. Starlight was a much better candidate.

The music video seems to also be shot in the same place as Travel and Starlight was shot. However, it shows a love story made up in Jiyoung’s mind. The male counterpart in the video is played by Jisoo and they meet in the laundromat after he tosses a blanket (or white shirt) on top of her by accident. And then a who imaginative sequence begins with the two dating and falling in love. Even though it was imaginative, the ending shows the possibility of the two actually falling in love when Jisoo gives Jiyoung the coin. It was honestly a nice video and the slow-motion that was applied to the video paired well with the slow tempo of the song.

Song – 6/10
Music Video – 7/10
Overall Rating – 7.4/10

[Double Review] Travel + Starlight – BOL4

I haven’t reviewed BOL4 (or Bolbbalgan4) before, despite them being chart-topping artists in the past two years. With the release of their latest mini-album, Red Diary Page. 2, I thought it would be nice to finally talk about them on this site. This review will focus on Travel, which is one of the title tracks (the other being Wind, with no music video yet), and Starlight, which is a side-track (which has a music video, hence its inclusion in the review). 

Travel is your Summer time song that talks about taking a break and going on a vacation. Something I would like to have right now. It is a fun and bright song that really makes Jiyoung’s nasal vocals pop out. The song was extremely catchy with its catchy hook and you can genuinely feel the happiness in her vocals. The instrumental was extremely nice and I thought the guitar worked incredibly well with the rest of the song. Travel is one awesome song that I have been playing on repeat since its release and I have no plans on stopping.

Starlight takes on more of a ballad sound compared to Travel or any of their previous title tracks. It is quite breathtaking with the instrumental flowing around the vocals and the nasal vocals leaves you in awe. It is so good that I can’t really find anything that I dislike about it. I think there was a mix of electric and acoustic guitar in the song, which went extremely well with the orchestral and piano based instrumentals. Like Travel, the song has been on repeat since its release. And both songs are so good that I cannot choose an absolute favourite.

Each music video does an amazing job at compliment the song. As stated previously, Travel was a fun and bright song. And the video focused squarely on those two elements portraying a fun travel adventure where the duo seem to be carefree and having the time of their life, while the colours popped to make it such a bright video. Starlight, like the song, allows you to take in some of the views of where they took their holiday (I assume). Majority of the video was focused on the duo but I must admit, it is shot beautifully. The ending when the sky changes to the night sky (via post-production editing) was really nice. What puts the icing on the cake for me in this video is how perfect the wind is. Fake or not, it was done well and to reasonable proportions (and not over the top).

Song – 10/10
Music Video – 10/10
Overall Rating – 10/10

Song – 10/10
Music Video – 10/10
Overall Rating – 10/10