Welcome to D-CRUNCH’s “Palace”
K-Pop might be aging—like fine wine, might I add—but never does a good acronym. D-CRUNCH, short for Diamond Crunch, from Girl’s Day’s and MAP6’s All-S Company opened the month of August with a fresh debut welcoming us into their “Palace.” In an age in which K-Pop groups are teased for years (LOONA, I’m looking at you) prior to their debut, D-CRUNCH took a more traditional approach, revealing their first member, Dylan, back in June. Dylan, alongside fellow D-CRUNCH members Chanyoung, OV, and Jungseung, graced the public prior to their group’s debut, participating in Naver's Musician League in Geupsik-Dan, joined by female members Garam and Hyungshin. The co-ed group released “Geupsik” in July.
In the age of global K-Pop, D-CRUNCH takes us a back a couple of years with “Palace,” a hip-hop-centered song with a choreography-focused music video lacking a storyline, forcing the viewer to actually pay attention to the group’s song and moves instead of trying to understand an intricate plot that essentially has no connection to the song (BTS, I’m now looking at you). Not to mention, with so many neon lights in the video this could pass as a The 1975 music video (I can almost hear “The Sound” playing in the distance). Maybe D-CRUNCH does know the sound of my heart and made this debut especially for me, because the new boy group nailed exactly what I have been missing about K-Pop: simplicity.
Granted, “simplicity” and “K-Pop” have never been in the same sentence, unless the phrase “is not” was in between, but work through my logic. K-Pop used to be about the fusion of music genres, clean choreography, extravagant clothing, and bad hairstyles. As of lately, music videos no longer come without a mysterious plot and endless references. I don’t mean to sound like a bitter, old fan, but as a music nerd, I became annoyed at being distracted from what I come here for in the first place: the music. Having new groups like D-CRUNCH debut with clear, simpler music videos like “Palace” warms my heart and calms my sensitive eyes. Not that much, though, because again, so much neon.
D-CRUNCH is definitely a hip-hop group and they deliver on that promise. It’s rather enjoyable to see a K-Pop group focus opening verses on rappers and have vocalists in conversation with their rap. “Palace” is not catchy, but it is enjoyable and did stick with me after listening to it once. I can’t say the release captured me enough to make me immediately press repeat, but I didn’t want to turn the song off, nor did I excitedly wait for it to be over. D-CRUNCH is a promising new group carrying the hip-hop flag that, as of right now, they seem to be able to handle. I’m excited to see if the group will eventually explore the softer side of hip-hop, give us some trap, or even delve into the recently famous emo hip-hop subgenre. K-Pop is constantly evolving, but D-CRUNCH’s step back is now more refreshing than innovation.