There is nothing quite as infectious as a Twice lead single – an established fact from their very debut just 2 years ago. Now, after 7 lead singles from 5 mini-albums, Likey from their first full-length album called Twicetagram continues the streak, in a charm-offensive that has yet to get old.
The chorus comes first immediately injecting the song with their engaging dollish allure, and is repetitive like in their last two comebacks TT and Signal. And, like in TT, lead Vocalist Nayeon has the first few lines. Her vocals are chock-full of a riveting bonnie sass.
The setting for the MV in Vancouver, Canada adds inviting elements to the song. It is lively without being exhausting, as well as engaging without being overbearing. It also allowed Twice to try something different than the studio settings they’ve used in the past like in Cheer Up, as well as move away from plain green outdoors setting like in Signal.
The chorus definitely took a different direction than from what I was expecting, as set up by the verses. The brief suspenseful pause before the drop for the chorus, allowed the producer create a really delightful pivot, into a melody-filled striking chorus. I really liked it.
Okay, so what happened at minute 3?! Lol! That’s kpop for ya! One minute you’re listening to a bubbly pop song, next minute you’re in an alternate interpretation of trap/hip-hop. It was cute. But, we all know Twice ain’t about that life.
Still, I loved the “hood” addition, with youngest and rapper Chaeyoung in a black hoody, with the rest of her group members surrounding a classic looking low-rider from the good-ole days of West Coast hiphop.
And then again, 15 seconds later, the track jumps into an EDM dance break, before returning quickly to its pop base. Well, that’s kpop, for ya. A little of everything that’s popular, for everyone, appealing to the suburban sheltered and inner-city tested, alike.
This comeback is basically leader Jihyo’s coming out party. She’s featured prominently in all aspects of the song and video, from the very beginning. And, incidentally, I was surprised Tzuyu, who’s been quite literally the face-of-group, seems to have taken a back-sit. She was practically invisible until I glimpsed her awkwardly after the first chorus.
Also, instead of English translations, the default translations that accompanied the MV was Chinese. It’s not a secret that China hasn’t been too pleased with Korea lately due to its decision to host Thaad missiles in response to the latest threats from North Korea. And, this has adversely affected kpop revenues out of China.
JYP Entertainment, Twice’s agency and record label, in turn depends quite a bit on Chinese fans for its success. Which, was further evident from their response to the outrage from Chinese fans from Tyuzu’s Taiwanese flag scandal in January of 2016.
JYP was also reported to have recently almost caught up to YG Entertainment in valuation, from its traditional number 3 position in the kpop triumvirate, with YG Entertainment traditionally considered as number 2. SM Entertainment still sits comfortably at number 1 with a valuation of 720 billion Korean Won. YG has a valuation 450 billion Won, and JYP’s is 390 billion Won, as of today.
The cinematography in the Likey music video is really eye-catching and entertaining, especially when slow motion was superimposed into real-time. That was really cool.
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