It’s been five years since GFRIEND debuted, and their first single of 2020, ‘Crossroads’ from the mini-album Labyrinth really is a crossroad between the string sounds that made the group popular in tracks such as Me Gustas Tu and the upbeat synth
trend that has been dominating the K-Pop charts to date. In fact, with the track and album being produced by none other than Big Hit’s Bang Si-hyuk, it’s realistically no surprise that the sound draws recognisable parallels with BTS’s Black Swan, which we discussed in an earlier Song of The Week article.
However, what makes this track fall flat in comparison to BTS’s release is that GFRIEND does not have a group of strong, grounded vocalists. The soft and airy vocals may be appealing when backed by strings, but they fail to hold their ground next to the synth productions and relatively rhythmic melodies. They rely on a heavy amount of layering which sounds very off as the instrumental itself also lacks power. It sounds like something they have already produced; it’s a little bland, but still enjoyable. It is clear that the group know what they are good at and stick to it with religious intensity.
On a more positive note, the music video is incredibly well put together; the diegetic sounds of shoe steps, the clock ticking, the opening of draws make it sound like it is the soundtrack to a drama. The contrast between the medium close-up and long-range shots, as well as the zoom out from the faces of the different members during the last chorus all work incredibly well in giving the video a further film-like dynamic. Take a watch below!