I usually stan for 99% of all Asian girl groups right off the bat, but AOA never totally clicked with me until now. I loved them when they debuted with that Sunny Hill knock-off, “Elvis,” but stopped actively following them after that. Probably because they change their sound with every comeback and have no real identity, or maybe I was just confused by their bloated back story about being angels and how one member’s a “half angel” and half the group is meant to be a faux rock band like Josie & The Pussycats and blah blah blah.
Anyway, none of that matters now that I’ve been scalped and decapitated by “Miniskirt,” a.k.a. a song so defining it’s got Jesus bumping ‘n’ grinding next to the pearly gates as we speak.
“Miniskirt” is the kind of song that makes you feel guilty as a K-pop fan for liking it because it’s another one of Brave Brothers’ recycled productions. We’ve already heard him do this exact same song with SISTAR, Hyorin, U-Kiss, TEEN TOP, Dazzling Red, and my great grandaddy down in Oklahoma, not to mention that the entire concept is just another take on SISTAR’s “Alone.” But as far as recycled K-pop goes, it’s one of the best darn rehashes I ever did see.
In AOA’s defence, “Miniskirt” also sounds like one of Primary’s urban jams, so it’s not strictly 100% Brave. I know that’s a bit of a reach, but I’m using the Primary thing to make myself feel better about praising Brave while hypocritically shitting on Western producers when they do the exact same thing. (The Western songs all sound like fucking shit, though, so that’s how I justify that.)
Plus, every Korean girl group song for the past three years has essentially just been a reworking of T-ara’s “Roly Poly” or SISTAR’s “Alone,” so if we judge AOA for following the trend, then we’ll have to virtually dismiss the entire K-pop industry, and you can bet your life that I ain’t about to do that.
Anyway, the “Miniskirt” music video looks like AOA just sat around watching SISTAR, Girl’s Day, and Dal Shabet clips and then conspired on how to make something bigger and racier. They unzip their skirts, they bend over and seductively gyrate their derrières, they tear off their dresses and stockings, they writhe around in bed and on the floor, they shower in slow motion, they use chairs as props like exotic dancers do, and they eat strawberries covered in whipped cream.
On paper it sounds desperate and extra (like the fifty trillion teasers for that trashy Rainbow BLAXX unit), but AOA executes the 19+ concept with surprising skill. Sure, on stage they still look like a bunch of little girls playing dress up in mama’s sexy outfits, but they nailed it in the music video and that’s what counts (just ask Girl’s Day).
Speaking of Girl’s Day, Hyejeong rolling around on the ground is the new Sojin “Something” floor crawl! Who agrees?
As outrageously unoriginal as “Miniskirt” is, it’s still the best girl group comeback of January so far, and that’s the bottom line.
I’ve since downloaded AOA’s entire discography and have been getting my life to it for the past three days. “Moya” and “Get Out” slay so hard, and Empress Jimin, Kween Choa, and Icon Hyejeong are my biases. Consider me an official AOA stan from this point forward.