[Review] Hyolyn’s “Dally” is familiar and trendy but ultimately effective

Since SISTAR disbanded last spring, Hyolyn has been busy with a number of digital singles and duets. Having dabbled in quite a few genres, it feels as if she’s still finding her place outside of her former girl group. But the thing about Hyolyn is that she’s always been a jack-of-all-trades. Her airy vocal sounds as good over pop as it does hip-hop, and her commanding stage presence ties it all together.

Dally” is not the kind of song that fits within my wheelhouse, but I’m surprised at how much I actually enjoy it. Working with hip-hop artist Gray, the track brings Hyolyn closer to a modern urban style than ever before. The dark, synth-driven beat feels very trendy, but is offset by a competent vocal line that really allows Hyolyn to shine. Her phrasing during the chorus is especially addictive, transforming a simple melody into something much more engaging. The “you’d better stop” refrain will likely become one of spring’s most quotable bits of K-pop English, and for good reason.

When Gray comes in for the second verse, “Dally” briefly transforms into a much more generic piece of hip-hop. This is not a slight on Gray himself, who is obviously a very strong voice within the genre, but “Dally”’s true focal point is always Hyolyn. The song simply doesn’t work as well when she’s absent. Thankfully, she soon returns in captivating fashion with a series of effortless high notes to round out the track.

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