You know what’s not-so-fun about midterms (aside from the already awful fact that they are midterms)? When you think they’re over, it turns out they’re not actually over because you still have some professors who delay theirs and others who decide to test you early with finals coming your way.
Anyway, all of this is merely to say that I’m still stuck in some sort of dizzying study-and-work trance, and it is time for me to share some of the newest additions to my study playlist since it’s the only thing I’ve been listening to in the past week. Buckle your seatbelts, open your textbooks, and type away, friends.
Ravi — “끓는점 (Boiling Point)” ft. Sik-K
The newest out of the three following songs, VIXX’s impossibly talented rapper Ravi released his most recent mixtape track on November 12. Titled “끓는점,” or “Boiling Point” when translated into English, the song really cannot be discussed without mentioning its featured artist, H1GHR MUSIC rapper and R&B artist Sik-K. You see, that’s because the whole sound of “Boiling Point” pretty much resembles Sik-K’s characteristic style, which stays rather uniform through his releases, evident in Flip and H.A.L.F. A smooth guitar croons over a trap beat, giving the whole track a distinct urban sound with a funky twist near the end. Even Ravi’s delivery and overall flow seems changed to fit Sik-K’s style, slightly drawled and melodic at the chorus. We hear his usual dynamism in his performance, and I have to say I do not dislike this type of flow coming from Ravi—if anything, it only serves to assert his immense skill as a rapper. Sik-K’s verse is a treat, of course, but honestly, as much as I love his work, I’m glad his feature didn’t take away from Ravi’s overall presence in the song. It’s the perfect track for chill writing sessions; bonus points if you’re seated at a trendy café in whatever town you live in.
SEVENTEEN — “Flower”
This title might as well read “The Entirety of SEVENTEEN’s TEEN, AGE” but that’s not exactly how playlists work, is it? Though I have plenty of favorites on SEVENTEEN’s brand new full-length album, namely “Without You,” “Hello,” the title track “Clap,” or the previously released “Trauma,” I found myself falling in love with “Flower” from the very first listen. “Flower” is both intriguing and entrancing from the first second. The resonating, plucked notes during the intro give the song a certain haunting feeling (matching the romantic, yet somber lyrics of the song), before the vocals and percussion slowly take over. And those vocals—oh wow. Jeonghan and The8 stand out the most for me, though I cannot skip over Seungkwan’s crystal clear voice at the chorus that had me falling in love with the song to begin with. Though “Flower” is only a unit song and doesn’t include all members of the group, for me it remains a must-listen on TEEN, AGE.
BTOB — “Red Lie”
Again, the truth is that I’ve been listening to BTOB’s brand new album Brother Act. on repeat since it came out nearly a month ago. I’ve reviewed it for The Kraze’s November monthly print issue (check that out, hey!), and I haven’t stopped listening to it since. One track that has stood out to me after many listens is the subtle “Red Lie” (which, by the way, provides the perfect background motivational music when writing anything). Built on acoustic sounds with a slight EDM touch, it has a soothing and emotional vibe that is laid-back in the best way; it’s not in-your-face with heartbreak, nor is it lacking sincerity in delivery. Paired with a very much perfect melody composed of acoustic guitars overlaid on a simple house beat, “Red Lie” stuns with its simplicity. Then again, such is the winning recipe of Brother Act. as a whole. Many tracks, notably “Nanana,” My Lady,” “Fly Away,” or even the title track “Missing You,” aren’t necessarily extremely complex in sound, but it’s this which makes them such incredible songs, as their simple arrangement still manages to create a refined and compelling result.
If the trend in my school workload keeps up, I might just have to share my entire study playlist with the world—but until then, I’ll leave you with these three tracks to enjoy. I have final assignments to get back to!