B-Sides: Cozy Winter Tracks
We’re in the midst of the harshest part of winter, with temperatures dropping low and the desire to curl up in bed with a cup of tea stronger than ever before. On days when you can indulge in this luxury, here are some tracks to go along with your mellow mood.
Eat - Zion.T
Zion.T is an ideal choice for background music on calm days, as he often releases soft R&B tracks that soothe listeners. “Eat” is a favorite of mine, as it’s not only a quiet and comforting melody, but a lyrical piece that addresses growing love very sweetly, with the main theme being a reminder to eat even when overwhelmed with work. On days full of overstimulation and loud noises, “Eat” is the perfect song to curl up to in an effort to subdue the senses.
Coffee Shop - B.A.P
B.A.P is a group known for their heavy, intense releases, so “Coffee Shop” is a turn away from their usual method of operation. As the title suggests, “Coffee Shop” is the exact type of calm, jazzy music you might come across in a coffee shop. Member Daehyun trades in his signature high notes for a softer, deeper tone that is incredibly soothing, complemented by Jongup, Youngjae, and Himchan’s naturally low vocals. Let’s not forget to mention Yongguk’s ridiculously deep voice that fits the subdued aesthetic perfectly. “Coffee Shop” is the perfect song to put on low while enjoying either a cup of coffee or tea on a quiet day.
Pour Up - DEAN ft. ZICO
R&B king DEAN has released plenty of amazing tracks in his time, but “Pour Up” has some of the most addicting melody lines and harmonic complements. The speed of the song is standard, but it feels much slower with the chosen melody and DEAN’s sweet vocals. Unlike a lot of heavier songs, “Pour Up” doesn’t have a massive buildup in the bridge leading to a drop in the chorus. Instead, it does an incredible job transitioning smoothly into a section highlighting DEAN’s vocals, which are high in range, though they elicit the emotion of a deeper voice just the same. In a song that contains plenty of potentially aggressive elements, DEAN has put together a very sweet and soft melody that warms the soul.
Sweet Lies - EXO
A personal confession: I was not a big fan of EXO’s title track “Power” at all. I much preferred this selection, “Sweet Lies,” for a number of reasons. It feels like a while since we’ve heard a more pacifying track from the group. Much like “Pour Up,” the pace of the song remains mostly stagnant throughout, with a soft melody that gives off a sensual vibe. Chanyeol’s rap verse coupled with Xiumin’s harmony is particularly pleasing, as the two voices blend together incredibly well.
Slow- Hyolyn ft. Jooheon of MONSTA X
A track off of former SISTAR leader Hyolyn’s solo album, “Slow” is a song clearly aimed at creating a soft, sexy vibe that complements Hyolyn’s sweet voice. Though the intent is clearly sexy, the track itself is still incredibly tranquil, especially at the chorus. MONSTA X’s Jooheon is featured on the track, despite being a rapper known for his fierceness. Nevertheless, he does a good job adjusting his style to that of the melody, adding an element of electricity to the calming track.