Whether or not you like the current girl group summer comebacks, you can’t deny that they’ve all been incredibly safe. SISTAR stuck to their formula, Nine Muses followed the clever “Drama” with a festival-friendly europop track, and AOA delivered another cosplay man-bait concept set to a “SO COOL” remix.
I expected the same from Girl’s Day, who realistically haven’t taken a risk since hitting it big with “Expectation,” but boy was I wrong.
Their new single, “Ring My Bell,” is a noisy clusterfuck of harmonicas, MIDI synths, electric guitars, cooed come-ons, hurried chants, Sunny Hill ling lings… It’s a hoedown throwdown on acid, and it’s fucking great.
2YOON was probably the first idol group to mix country music with dance-pop and they did a fine job of it, but Girl’s Day go for gold with no inhibitions and that’s why “Ring My Bell” is so exhilarating.
The first time I listened to it, a light bulb went off in my head and I suddenly remembered, “Oh yes, this is what K-pop sounds like! It’s weird and obtrusive and daring and fun, not just the generic bubblegum that so many outsiders paint it as.”
“Ring My Bell” was crafted by two frequent collaborators of hitmaker Duble Sidekick, Homeboy and Long Candy, who were behind the other best girl group song of the summer, BESTie’s “Excuse Me.”
The craziness of the production is reflected in the MV, which is just a hodge podge of stuff. The arcade games from “Darling,” set pieces from “Problem” (surely a nod to their now iconic performance–“Tell me tell me baby!“), Blady’s wardrobe and choreography, some black guy with an afro. In their solo scenes, Sojin’s soaking wet in front of a champagne fountain serving sex, while Hyeri looks like she could be filming any number of KARA videos.
They’ve even messed with their image this time around. Sojin’s dyed her hair a trailer park yellow and CRIMPED IT, Hyeri’s abandoned her signature brown bob cut for long black tresses, and Yura’s rocking a fire red wig better than Gyuri, Sunny, and Krystal combined.
I’ve been a Girl’s Day stan since “Twinkle Twinkle” dropped, but after “Expectation” they lost their individuality and morphed into extremely pretty girls with extremely catchy, public-friendly songs. That’s fine, but their hits and concepts could’ve gone to any number of popular girl groups (one almost did), and you can never truly reach the top without some originality. Now Girl’s Day proved that they do deserve their spot on the A-list. “Ring My Bell” is an exciting risk and a promise for the future. If this does well (and it is so far), then who knows what could happen down the line?
And I don’t care if I’m the only one that stans this era. I’m the only one that appreciates the unfairly maligned “Tilt My Head,” and “Ring My Bell” is clearly the “Tilt My Head” of 2015!