[UnitedKpop K-pop Single Review] T.O.P – DOOM DADA

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T.O.P, after way too long, has finally returned with his new track, Doom Dada. Long time no see!

Concept

Diving straight into it, the first thing I thought when watching the MV was that it seemed very similar to T.O.P’s previous single, Turn It Up, as both are in black and white and start out with him with his back to the camera until the song really kicks in. But as you get further into the MV, you realise that the only thing in common between these two videos is the greyscale.
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After having watched the MV all the way through (multiple times) I got the feeling that the overall concept is pure quirky charm, which T.O.P pulls of effortlessly! We see him in many different and unusual scenes which appear a little disjointed as the MV has no storyline and seemingly no coherency, and yet the MV flows wonderfully as we see more and more strange things the longer we watch.

We see some Planet of the Apes style scenes where some apes are rummaging around in the ground and find some remains of what might be a singer, if the microphone they find is any clue. We also see T.O.P riding around on an old fashioned motorbike with a giant baby in the side car! At one point he seems to be rocking a sort of vampire look with dramatic clothes and contact lenses, and we also see him sat upon a throne too.

Half the time I’m left wondering what on earth it is that I’m watching, and yet it’s utterly compelling…I couldn’t stop watching! With so much of this MV, if it had been the concept for any other artists video, I might have found myself laughing at how strange some parts are, but T.O.P’s presence alone gives this MV and overall concept such a charismatic vibe that I think many people will find the oddity quite charming and appealing. Some of these scenes are pretty surreal and unusual, and yet the way he seems so at home in every scene makes it so that nothing in the MV looks over the top. Even when he’s travelling with a giant baby. Or is a monkey.

And if nothing else, he looks fantastic pulling off unique and outlandish styles, which he just completely owns (even the turn of the century moustache…how does he make that look good?).

I don’t think that this kind of concept is something we see very often in music that is popular in the UK mainstream, but I think that everything from the sound of the track to the black and white MV has managed to strike an amazing balance between being non-conventional and yet incredibly appealing. It’s different enough that you remember it, but not over the top so that people might disregard it as a gimmick.

UK Potential: 4/5

Choreography

There is a distinct lack of choreography in the MV, which didn’t really surprise me seeing as T.O.P isn’t known for his dancing prowess. But saying that, choreography definitely isn’t necessary in this MV, and nothing suffers for the lack of a dance routine. I can’t even imagine what kind of routine would match well with the sound of this song…but assuming that T.O.P promotes this track, I guess we’ll be finding out!

UK Potential: 3/5

Song

Doom Dada has a wonderfully low, minimalistic, (almost futuristic at times) sounding beat that contrasts yet complements the old fashioned black and white style of the MV. It reminds me a little of some of the less mainstream tracks from Nicki Minaj, and even minimalistic like Tinie Tempeh’s Pass Out, which was very popular here in the UK.

This track contains a clear and undeniable demonstration of his awesome rap skills, which would put an end to anyone who likes to think that Koreans wouldn’t be able to rap well. T.O.P provides soothing and low rap vocals through most of the song, and then at times changes it up to spit out his lyrics in rapid-fire which keeps you at attention the whole time. As many people will attest to, his voice is near-mesmerising, and at times it feels like you have to listen to him – it’s not a choice. I think the sound of his voice and the pure skill that he raps with would be very appealing to many people, as even if it’s perhaps not someone’s typical music choice, I think many people will be able to appreciate his voice.

There is some English interspersed throughout the lyrics, and the most notable seems to be the introduction to the song, ‘long time no see, long long time no see’, which seems like it could be a greeting to his fans who have had to wait a long time for this new solo track. He also uses some occasional English words like ‘shower, ‘let’s go’, ‘mass media’ and ‘hey mister and sister’. This English was very easily recognisable and even though it holds no clues as to what the song’s about, the fact that these words are well pronounced and distinguishable from the Korean might help attract some people to this song if they’re not convinced on listening to non-English music.

UK Potential: 4/5

Highlight: – The scene where it looks like T.O.P is running with a skeleton in almost stop-start animation style was just so awesome!

Overall UK Potential: 11/15 – So much about Doom Dada, from the overall sound to the unusual things we see in the MV, I honestly think it would appeal to many people here in the UK!

Do you agree with me? Let us know what you think! And be sure to check out the MV below.

Also, if you missed it, have a look at our MV breakdown of T.O.P’s latest solo single!

Ashleigh Gregory

Writer at UnitedKpop
UnitedKpop's resident film connoisseur.

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  • Mai Duff

    this is why i love him, he just pulls everything off;;

  • 바나 ●_●

    best scene ever when he dances on the motorcycle !!!!!!!!! i couldnt help but to explode in laughter XD