Prior to the confirmation that CL was scheduled to be making her comeback as a warm up single for her American debut, the rumor mill was practically buzzing with the prospect of 2ne1 coming back as a group. However, for those who are familiar with the way YG entertainment are with releasing his artists’ music, there are always prolonged delays – especially considering that CL was supposedly going to commence her debut in the USA earlier on in the year with the date consistently kept getting dragged back over and over again.

I have to say, although I would have loved for it to have been a 2ne1 single – since they had just released a full album last January – I was looking forward to the kind of music CL would release on the 21st November as I wasn’t 100% sold on her past single ‘Dr Pepper’, though this newest addition to the 2ne1 leader’s list of solo songs has been growing on me.

With the MAMA award show in a few days time, who else is excited to see a live performance of this song? Especially as it has been reported that Paris Goebel and ReQuest dance crew have been said to be sharing the stage, the expectations are most certainly high with this.

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Thoughts on the Song:

To be honest, with the title name I was aware that this song wasn’t going to have the same kind of vibe that we’re used to hearing from an average K-pop song. Furthermore, I set myself somewhat low expectations for this single so I was pleasantly surprised that it made me like the song, then it quickly grew on me and ever since it’s been on repeat constantly. I had watched the MV first, so my first impressions of the song were based off the song combined with the visual impact of the music video.  The music style at the beginning had a strong punch-like bass tone which was soon accompanied by an Asian trap music sound.

I did like that CL still had retained a section of Korean in her song, which was composed by Teddy and Jean-Baptiste. CL is credited for the song lyrics along with Teddy Danny Chung and Jean-Baptiste . Though, there were a number of occasions where there were the typical sentences you might hear of CL’s lavish lifestyle of her travels to exotic countries, the song is practically overflowing with attitude especially with the words that openly challenges anyone who stands in her way Someone’s gonna stop me? Who?’ Is this possibly a risky move coming from a someone who’s technically classed as a rookie in the US? Though, it could be argued that sometimes taking risks can pay off.

The repeating of words of the Korean section of the song did remind me somewhat of ‘I am the Best’ (the words of one of the main songs that 2ne1 is best known for was added into the lyrics and could be a sneaky  promotion to her fellow girls) with the catchy words that don’t really actually make any sense popping up now and again. I think the reasoning behind it might be for fans to be able to chant alongside CL whilst she’s performing so they can also get involved with the performance. That’s something that I do admire about her as an artist, she always likes to get the crowd participating whenever she’s on stage.

There has been mixed reviews of this song, there are those who are loving the concept, people who may be on the fence and the others who just don’t like it – as everyone is entitled to their own opinions, which is fine. The word Americanized has cropped up here and there to describe this song or the MV, I think there’s always still going to be an element of K-pop in the song because that’s CL’s roots and what she has said makes her authentic as an growing international artist. It is true that in contrast to the kind of lyrical messages you would find in a Korean song would normally have a deeper meaning however this song style is all about hype more than anything else, the main focus is on showcasing CL by giving her a platform that appeals to more than just K-pop fans. I think that CL wanted to make a lasting impression on her audience especially with those who have never heard of her or even K-pop for that matter.

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Thoughts on the Music Video:

I’m not overly familiar with Paris Goebel, who was the producer, choreographer and director of this music video, though I know she had contributed to CL’s fellow labelmates’ work with Taeyang’s ‘Ringa Linga’ and BIGBANG’s ‘Bang Bang Bang’. Though, ever since CL’s performance in the Gayo Daejun Music Awards in 2013 with her collaboration stage with Lee Hyori, I have to admit that I’m still slightly obsessed with that because it showed a fierce side of CL who has an abundance of charisma. I feel like the fact that working with Paris was definitely a good match as it brought together two women who aren’t afraid to embrace their sexuality and produce a work that can empower women to feel like it’s not a bad thing if women don’t conform to the stereotypical labels that are put on them.

There are some who were shocked by how CL was dancing, though for those who have watched some (or shamelessly lots) of her ‘Mental Breakdown’ live performances you’ll see how strong and fierce she can be, so it’s not really a surprise. She’s growing as an artist and doesn’t have the same constraints if she were to prepare for a Korean comeback instead.

There has been mixed reviews of this song and music video in general, there are those who are loving the concept, people who may be on the fence and the others who just don’t like it – as everyone is entitled to their own opinions, which is fine. The main thing though I would like to pick up on is the double standard issue, this can be from boy groups to any artist in the music industry, if it’s fine for an artist to perform in a certain way but it’s not for CL – you can particularly find this comparison between K-pop boy groups and girl groups. If the former were to release an edgy music video, they’ll be mostly praised by fans however the common theme with the latter is they’ll be slated for doing an ‘overused sexy concept’. Or another example could be with Hyuna and her recent solo comeback a few months ago, she also received some criticism for her music video however it still was welcomed warmly by her fans however if these same fans are basically repeating the same things said about Hyuna’s ‘Roll Deep’ to CL’s MV, why isn’t it possible to appreciate both women and not drag either one down? Just some food for thought.

What are your thoughts on the song and music video? Do you think CL can crack the US? Let us know in the comments!

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