Well, well, well, look which light of my vocal life finds herself near the top of MNet charts again this week.
You may remember this soulful songstress from another review I did four months ago of her song ‘1, 2, 3, 4’ and I have to say, these months apart have been a good teacher to the young Hi Lee (and also the people that direct her videos). I love that in ‘It’s Over’ it’s more than clear that she’s been encouraged to keep her bluesy vocals and I still believe that they’re the major thing that will separate her from her female vocalist peers. So far, it seems like the Kpop music scene agrees with me.
Much like her last song, ‘It’s Over’ has a super catchy chorus that has been stuck in my head with no signs of relenting any time soon. In a nice upgrade from ‘1, 2, 3, 4’, the lyrics have decided to grow up a little bit. This time, the protagonist of the song actually has a reason to want to ditch the jerk love interest, and she’s able to portray this lyrically as well as actually taking the huge step of incorporating some feelings behind the words. Despite the song still being exceedingly simple in concept and execution it’s clear that there’s some metamorphosis going on. If I were to, once more, compare her to American pop stars, I’d say that she was growing from ‘…Baby, One More Time’ era Britney Spears to ‘Back to Basics’ era Christina Aguilera. A slow growth, but the progression is there.
Though the lyrical progress is nothing to write home about, her stage presence has increased exponentially. That is to say, she actually has some this time around. There are many moments where I actually start to believe that she has a personality. Not only that, but she has a personality that’s, dare I say it, endearing. Yet, that only comes in small spurts; there are still too many moments where she’s not emoting as much as she needs to be and still seems a little bit dull. She’s learning, though! I’m way more pleased about this than I probably should be…
Also to her credit, her MV director has also decided not to work against her and it seems as though someone on the crew was taking very good notes about the critical reception of the last music video (you’re welcome, by the way). This time, Lee isn’t crowded by a boatload of extras, dancers, scenes, props, or anything else. This might sound like the recipe for a rather dull MV, but it’s quite the opposite! Without all those extras, every part of the music video gets that much more importance placed on it and the ‘star’ doesn’t end up getting washed out. Simple suits her—although I’m not too much of a fan of all that white.
Furthermore, the video was also really funny and entertaining (I know, I was surprised too). The bear character was just the perfect antagonist and I found myself laughing quite a few times. I like that they decided to stop taking themselves quite so seriously and have some fun—an element the last video was lacking in spades.
Again, I’ll give this song a 3 out of 5 (a 3.7 if you want to get technical). The reasons being that while the song is fun and catchy, I actually think it’s a little bit less compelling as a whole compared to ‘1, 2, 3, 4’. However, the leaps and bounds she has made as an artist shouldn’t be ignored and I hope she and her company both continue working together to find the right balance of styles so that she can really shine. I still hold the dream that one day she can be Korea’s Adele and if she continues on this path, growing and experimenting, I have no doubt that she’ll be able to reach that level of pure vocal bliss.