GUHARA's 'Choco Chip Cookies' Is The Tastiest Song Of The Summer
Different, Refreshing, ExoticBest-Worst Lyrics EverA New Take On Retro K-popA Classy Sexy Concept
4.6Overall Score
Reader Rating 56 Votes

Typically in pop music, the worse your voice is the better your music is. Bad singers need good producers to craft inventive beats that can work around their limited vocals. Just look at Britney and Janet, or how much better the new Selena Gomez single is to Demi Lovato’s Katy Perry-meets-Kesha rehash.

That’s why I knew that the solo debut from KARA‘s Hara, an album hilariously titled ALOHARA, would be incredible.

The 24-year-old, famed for her ant waist and doll-like beauty, is literally the worst singer in K-pop, but she’s also one of the prettiest–there’s just no way that that this tone deaf diva could go solo without some of the best hitmakers in the biz to mask her shortcomings.

Her first solo single, “Choco Chip Cookies,” isn’t at all what I expected, but it turned out to be exactly what I wanted.

Produced by Park Woo Sang (MAMAMOO’s “Self Camera,” Miss A’s “Love Is U”), “Choco Chip Cookies” is an unexpected mix of electronic R&B, chic synths, and scattered piano tinkles.

By mainstream idol pop standards, “Choco Chip Cookies” is not a commercial song at all. When I first heard it, I thought of Ga-In’s cheeky “Apple” and the vintage beauty of Seo In Young’s “Thinking of You.” It’s loose and lovely and not at all concerned with being anything like the other glossy girl group solos that have come out over the past year.

The structure is unconventional –there’s barely even a proper chorus– while the ridiculous yet irresistible lyrics are nothing more than a baking recipe wrapped up in sexual metaphors.

Tell me they’re good, choco chip cookies,” Hara coos. “With cookies in our mouths, let’s play a fun game / Taste them when they’re hot, before they’re dry.”

There’s been a lot of talk of GUHARA copying former DSP star (and undisputed K-pop royalty) Lee Hyori for her solo debut, but #CCC shows the exact opposite. She’s found her own lane with a song that captures all her charms, from her playful sense of humour to her feminine beauty. It’s all so Hara, right down to the live stage, which resembles a photoshoot with flattering poses rather than a performance with dance moves. She’s now Korea’s answer to Cassie, relying on her looks instead of her talent and putting out brilliant songs that the public won’t get but critics will love.

Sadly, “Choco Chip Cookies” has already left Melon’s top 100, but for me this summer is now officially all about ALOHARA.

  • Reddyyay

    I really liked this song, but the other songs on her album are sooooooooo good, it makes me wonder why she picked CCC as the title. Nonetheless i’m happy with the end result.

    • T-rollypoly

      They chose “How About Me?” first but KBS couldn’t handle the heat, they banned it. They picked CCC as the title track instead which is as equally amazing.

      • Nah I don’t think that’s correct. I think they just banned it for the double comeback stages since she’s performing it along with CCC, so they went and re-recorded the lyrics for certain parts of the song so it could be performed live.

        • T-rollypoly

          Are you sure? well I’m not really sure. I just read it on the reddit thread about CCC (Show Champion thread) like 30 mins. ago. It’s reddit after all. If you’re sure, I stand corrected.

          • Do you have the Reddit link? I’m pretty sure I’m right, although I could be wrong, but I don’t see How About Me featuring Youngji with a hip-hop concept being her title track LOL. I think people are just confused coz KBS banned the song, but they do that for songs that aren’t the title track all the time but a lot of people probably don’t know that.

          • T-rollypoly

            You make more sense though. I think you’re right but other people are saying otherwise. They are not citing sources though. It is on the Alohara album review thread but for some reason I couldn’t find it. Here’s another thread though, someone mentioned it and another person agreed. https://www.reddit.com/r/kpop/comments/3ddcr0/mbc_music_%EC%87%BC_%EC%B1%94%ED%94%BC%EC%96%B8_show_champion_performances_150715/

            You can also check the How About Me thread, there’s another user who also mentioned it but again no source so…

        • Bruno

          The teasers for her debut are to fault for this mess, since they all had “How About Me?” playing in the background along with scenes from the music video for CCC:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RRiyRB_WF7I

          I think that’s why people were SURE this would be the single instead of CCC (and I think that’s where people on reddit are coming from)

  • T-rollypoly

    I agree with you on this one. Awesome song, very inventive and of course the lyrics is amazing.

  • lildarien

    I wasn’t here for this when the MV dropped, but that live stage…. she is having SO much fun and instantly i’m in love. This is the same kinda vibe Hyolegend was giving during Goodnight Kiss. Yes to idols who enjoy the stage!

  • KingBeaArthur

    Fell in love with this song instantly. Hara delivered full on with charming vocals and a fool-proof concept.

  • Julian Jung

    Jacques have you been out in the sun for extended periods of time this season? Your taste in music this Summer has been all over the place. Hoping Stellar delivers the full package with their comeback like we’re expecting so that I can finally stan for you once again!

  • Hyoyeon: The White Babe

    Damn, this song is awesome! It’s cheeky, sensual, and subtle at the same time. Lovin’ that homage to Bloom at the intro. Only GUHARALAHARA!!!!

    Now let us all remember the vocal slayage of this unsung vocal chanteuse. BEG JeA on piano because GUHARA can!!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WvH7n–jJpQ

    • Nicole Naeun

      dliIODHAWIOFHAIPEHFILAHFLAEIHFE

      I REMEMBER I LAUGHED UNTIL I CRIED BECAUSE OF THIS! WHAT A VOCAL CHANTEUSE, GUHARA THE SINGER IS

    • jizabel

      I would give my left tit to know what JeA was thinking during this.

  • Nicole Naeun

    Long live, GUHARA the singer!

  • I wish I could love this as much as you guys, though, to be fair, it took me awhile to realize Cassie’s brilliance. Hara wins for the best-looking comeback; the whole video looks like heaven and the song feels like a daydream. Maybe that’s why I’m having trouble loving it. It’s not sticking.

  • Db

    I can’t with the Qrishna hate. She is the best chanteuse of all time. I have evidence!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vtXXNzlJNGU

    • mjm5822

      All bow down to our goddess Qri.

    • _craypopper

      She’s the greatest at the songs intros, I’ll give her that. She’s the reason those songs hit daebak. Other than that, Qri darling, shut up and look pretty.

    • OMFG! i had forgotten how FLAWLESS the MJ concept for “i’m really hurt” <3

  • Marhaebwa

    Hara is giving me so much life. Korea honestly sleep on good stuff, for real.
    “How about me?” Is LIFE

  • ADW

    Since you broke my heart about with Nine Muses and your public shame towards “Hurt Locker” I am happy to come back home with this review.

    Her visual is on point! Girl can’t sing for shit but that doesn’t matter in KPOP apparently.

    Love that summer feel, she’s probaly nailed it in terms of my prefered style of music over Party, but being total ricequeen for Girls Generation and the fact it’s a commercial track, I think I love that more.

    It’s obvious no one would ever let her succed in Korea but she gave it a shot.
    Nicole should have done something like this.

  • love the song, love the mv, love the perfs and love the hara!

    that male dancer omg jacques! as i told you on twitter: i’d have sex with both of them anytime anywhere they wanted me!

  • Suzy Sooyoung

    I think this song is so breezy, I absolutely love it! Plus Hara is a total babe who wouldn’t want to look at that angel?

  • Lady

    If Hara managed to get a hot debut with her barely-there singing voice, imagine how iconic Qri’s debut would be.