OH MY GIRL lends a comforting hand to the world through their fifth mini-album Secret Garden. Back after a nine-month hiatus along with an alteration to the seven-membered group, OH MY GIRL sets out on a journey to start a fairytale of their own.
Compared to previous title tracks like “Cupid,” “Windy Day,” “Coloring Book,” and “Liar Liar,” “Secret Garden” stands out from the normal style of music the group pursued. Rather than going with another upbeat track, the group’s choice to take on a different path (as evidenced in the highlight medley) provoked fans’ curiosity about the gradual transformation of OH MY GIRL’s music.
The snapping sound effects that start off the song are a flawless addition to the track; they play a big role in keeping the feel lighthearted, making you feel as if you’re in a world of fantasy. Soon, Arin’s soft voice singing out “My secret garden” brings an indescribable tingly sensation that just intensifies with Jiho’s part smoothly overlapping onto the melody. YooA, Binnie, Hyojung, and Seunghee’s amazing vocals are also definitely a part not to miss!
Aside from the technical musical components of the song, the lyrics hold a significant meaning in relation to the group’s overall concept. The part “Inside me I have a precious place only for me / The landscape is nothing special yet / If you wait for a while you’ll meet it” draws out a certain story, something that goes along the lines of not giving up on your dream. OH MY GIRL’s intention to relay words of encouragement clearly reached out to fans all over the world as they responded to the group with endless support.
As the title goes, scenes of the garden are shown numerous times throughout the music video. Pastel colors, the first things that come into view, are one of the most essential aspects that help the music video complement the concept as it creates a dreamlike mood. Vibrant hints of the yellow flowers in the garden represent the lyrics almost directly, enlivening the bright atmosphere directed by the song. The animals that show up in the different rooms of each member and the surreal events that take place also seem to point to a certain reason for its appearance. A song to encourage and support others, these unreal figures seem to symbolize and foreshadow happiness in the future.
The Hidden Flowers
Secret Garden consists of four tracks “Love O’ Clock,” “Butterfly,” “Sixteen,” and “Magic.”
Surprisingly, a majority of the B-sides contain rap verses that could not be found in the title track itself, unlike the common concept the songs share. Excluding “Sixteen” which stresses the past memories of youth, each and every other track talks about love from a different perspective.
Yet “Love O’ Clock” was the most striking, claiming its place as one of my personal favorites. Although it is a follow-up song to “Windy Day,” it definitely doesn’t have the same vibe. Truthfully, the song might even seem a bit strange on first listen, with the tick-tock sound of a clock setting the rhythm to the song. It soon picks up its pace though, and the harmonious vocals kick in, representing the feeling of a confused, love-struck girl. The unpredictable rap in the middle brought on a whole switch to the song; nonetheless, I’m not going to complain about it since it was just as good. Gotta be careful though, Mimi’s about to come swerving into your bias lane!
Overall, Secret Garden succeeded in displaying OH MY GIRL’s ability to express a concept other than ones in the same summer-vibe category they’ve been pursuing all along. The comeback has pleased more than disappointed, which is clearly reflected by the high ranks on MelOn, Bugs, Genie, and more. With the number of hidden gems in Secret Garden, it’s definitely not a bad time to get to know the girls.
“Secret Garden” Title Score: 9/10
Music Video Score: 8/10
Secret Garden Album Score: 9/10