EXID have returned with “Hot Pink” after a bunch of promising teaser pictures and a promising teaser clip, and while part of it delivers, a main aspect doesn’t.
The song started off basically how I wanted, with the mix of the three previously released tracks drawing me in. LE rapping over Bob James sample (probably) was easily my favorite part of this, and even though the inclusion of the black guy for hep-hap is awkward, it also sort of makes sense that he’s dressed like a member of Run DMC since the legendary group used that sample as well.
Up until then, everything is working out and “Hot Pink” is setting up to be something potentially great. Unfortunately, I have no idea what was happening with the chorus. Maybe it could’ve worked if it wasn’t chanted earlier or if it had any type of catchiness to it at all, but after the build, the “hook” was simply a letdown. Unlike “Up & Down“, it didn’t fit in seamlessly with the song, and unlike “Ah Yeah“, it didn’t fit with the volume or rhythm of the track. The hook was just … suddenly there, dropping the volume and killing the build instead of capitalizing on it. That said, it was a bit better the second time through just as a reprieve from the sheer noise of the verses, but it didn’t compensate enough in that way for my tastes.
A lot of people are talking about how the song has its fingers in too many pies and jumps around a bunch, but I didn’t have a problem with the switches from the pop singing to rapping to almost ballad singing to rapping again and all that. The verses continued to work throughout, so the hook didn’t completely ruin the song or anything, but it’s hard to endorse this as something that will go on repeat when it’s missing such a key element.
The music video, on the other hand, was well executed all around. EXID basically all looked amazing, with only Solji standing out as having questionable styling (that 80s jacket, why). The hook choreography was as uninspired as the hook itself, but all the other movements relating to the music video worked well. Most importantly, “Hot Pink” had a bunch of quality sets to work with, and the bright color schemes fortunately resisted the temptation to be too blindingly pink.
Also, given the ending of the music video, I can’t wait for EXID’s cover of “Cop Killer“. Iljin thugz fo lyfe.
EXID are getting to the point now where almost anything they release will chart well and will have enough support, but while I loved their previous two comebacks, I can’t completely endorse this one. Going back to the well is fine, but they came up dry this time and I think it costs the replay value of the song dearly. Fortunately, there was … well, everything else about this song to still make the comeback worthwhile at least.