Like Lady Gaga, it’s been a while since 2NE1 has produced any singles, leaving some to wonder about the fate of the super popular group. After star member CL released her solo track to rave reviews, the group was going to have to pull a fantastic single out to match it – after all, this is their first major release since 2012. Does the final product meet their high standards, or does the title allude to it falling short?
Let’s take a listen to Falling in Love.
Here’s the video with English subs:
The lyrics, video, and track are all tied into the theme of summer love. Sadly, the lyrics are incredibly cliche even if the words themselves are badass. The song is about a summer crush or romance where the girl is intensely infatuated with the boy, falling in love with him. If you’re waiting for further explanation, that’s it. Really. I know their songs are typically layered with meaning – I Am The Best was literally a song about bragging about how great you are. Still, if it wasn’t for some of the kick-ass word choices and great performance, this song would have fallen flatter than a pancake on a griddle.
The dance is really hit or miss. There are a lot of times when in the dance, they look sexy and amazing, really getting into it. Those get interrupted when they do these little stunted kicks, or in the chorus with the move I like to call the “spirit-fingers-half-turn.” This wouldn’t usually be a problem, but the moves are so jarring when placed in between the smooth flowing hip shaking and pop-and-lock arm work. It’s a real shame, because this group usually has amazing dances to go with their big voices and huge presence. Hopefully next time they’ll just stick to pure hip-hop. At least their costuming is pretty spot on.
In terms of video, this one is super stylized. The beach themed portions are just dance shots but the fact that it’s a real set with real sand is enough for me. The “gold” portions are stunningly done, with all the members of the group looking especially fabulous in tones of white, beige, and gold, and I would have loved to see a version entirely made of these shots. Oh course, we have the typical -urban-paint-splatter scenes towards the end when the members of the group are interacting with several boys playing basketball. While it is nice to see actual men running around in a video for a love song, their presence was short lived. Still, it’s a great looking video that is as big a coronation march as it could be from this returning group.
The song itself has a great beat, mixing a club song with a tropical summertime ballad, which creates a unique sound that is instantly catchy. The transitions between the two are handled masterfully, making it feel like one song rather than a disjointed mess. While I’m not a big fan of the smooth reggae style but I think here it works great because they still keep the bass running under it all, it helps to keep it interesting. The vocal performances are as strong as ever, with all the members taking on their usual roles – Minzy singing verse, CL rapping, Bom singing the chorus, and Dara taking whatever’s left. What makes 2NE1 unique is that all the members have strong vocals and great presence. Even if what they are singing is cliche and flat, they have the personality and charm to make it exciting, which can’t be said of all artists. For me, that’s what saved the song – I don’t know if I would have enjoyed it as much if this was a Girls Generation or f(x) song.
Falling In Love is the strong comeback 2ne1 needed, but there’s certainly room for improvement on their next musical venture, which will hopefully come out a lot sooner than a year from now. Definitely check it our if you’re in the mood for a good summer song to add to your driving playlist, to combat that stupid Lana Del Rey song Summer Sadness.
– Great video.
– Great performance.
– Catchy song with a good beat.
– So-so dance.
– So-so lyrics.