Hello Venus have been struggling to find their own sound since revamping their lineup and image last year. The sexy “Sticky Sticky” was a standard Brave Brothers cut-and-paste job, while “Wiggle Wiggle” was trashy enough for novelty song stanning but also different enough to legitimately love.
“Wiggle Wiggle” made some minor waves but ultimately didn’t work out like the Gummi Venus de Milos were hoping, so now the girls are playing it safe again by hopping on this summer’s EDM trend with their new single, the Brave Brothers-produced “I’m Ill.”
“I’m Ill” has some modern EDM elements to it and it definitely owes a lot to T-ara’s “Sugar Free,” both in sound and concept, but it still feels quite vintage in a way that Brave’s other big dance single right now, AOA’s “Heart Attack,” does not.
When listening to “I’m Ill, ” I feel like I’m transported back to the ’90s and early ’00s when Eurodance and Hi-NRG were all the rage. I think of someone like Lee Jung Hyun, who used the sound to become Korea’s Queen of Techno.
I also love the unashamedly cocky lyrics, which are more knowingly tongue-in-cheek than most of K-pop’s “Look at me I’m hot!” girl group songs.
“All of you lonely men, come and check me out, tell me how cool I am,” Hello Venus sing. “Everyone tells me I’m prettier and prettier… I’m pretty from the beginning! Don’t you know?”
Well, they are one of the prettiest girl groups out right now. Why not brag about it?
The concept for the music video is just “Sugar Free” with short skirts and sex appeal, and whoever decided to make the English title “I’m Ill” instead of the originally reported “I’m Art” just missed out on having the best song title of the year. Regardless, this is another solid summer comeback and a good look for Hello Venus, who should book a lot of festivals and events with this sound.
I can see it now: DJ Doc’s annual 19+ rated pool party featuring AOA and T-ara as headliners, supported by Nine Muses, Hello Venus, Minx, and Stellar. The hottest girl groups performing the hottest EDM tracks during one wild night!