[Review] Timeless nature of MAMAMOO’s “Wind Flower” has ups and downs

MAMAMOO’s highly successful 2018 has been filled with mini albums that follow a “four seasons,” color-specific concept. March’s Starry Night was painted with yellow, while summer hit Egotistic burned with red. As we move closer to winter, new single “Wind Flower” takes on a blue hue, as well as a more pensive tone.

When put into the context of idol music, “Wind Flower” barely feels like a title track at all. However, that shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. One of the driving forces behind MAMAMOO’s rise to the top has been their ability to skirt the line between idol pop and a more indie-focused sensibility. “Wind Flower” falls closer to the latter, but bolsters its gentle groove with a breezy sing-along hook. Much of the group’s work this year has felt quite trendy. In contrast, “Wind Flower” boasts a timeless appeal.

Timelessness doesn’t automatically denote quality, and “Wind Flower” could do with some tightening here and there. Too much of the song floats by on innocuous charm, which makes thematic sense given its lyrical touchstones. But while the verses are prone to meandering, I love that we get some guitar in the instrumental. “Wind Flower” is rooted in an almost folksy blend of instrumentation — pretty far removed from the group’s usual r&b influences.

And then there’s the song’s chorus, which feels effortlessly realized. It may not hit with the impact of MAMAMOO’s most iconic material, but its light, nuanced touch packs a surprisingly emotional catharsis. With one more “season” to go in their series of releases, this is an understated, effective way to end the year.

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