Ballad Roundup: Mailbag (Sunny Hill, NCT U, f(x), Suzy, Epik High) + Ladies’ Code Sojung, Punch

Huang Zitao, the Prince of Tears

Apologies for the long hiatus again (happy Lunar New Year), we got some tracks from the Twitter Mailbag mixed with some new(ish) cuts.

Sunny Hill – “Pray”

Remembered this MV for sure, but not the song particularly. Remember when you could put out songs like this and they’d chart?

NCT U – “My Everything”

Perhaps I am a conservative ballad pundit because this one hit more spots for me than “From Home” did, mainly because the barebones accompaniment allowed me to appreciate the vocal performance here that much more. SM ballads are like the last bastion of their songwriters even attempting to compose a melody, and “My Everything” continues the trend. Xiaojun and Renjun excel and Taeil never disappoints.

f(x) – “Ending Page”

The chorus still hits even after all these years. Kind of 2NE1-esque, yeah? With less reverb.

VIXX Leo – “This about to happen”

He’s kind of going for budget Taemin here and I’m not mad. Also he got mad skinny.

Suzy – “I’m In Love with Someone Else”

I am firmly in the pro-Suzy camp, in fact I tweeted back in 2018 that this was one of my favorite ballads of the year. Again, Suzy has that voice that kind of slots just under great but just above really good, which makes her great for these plaintive, fragile, sad rousers. Her track for “Start-Up” lives in a similar space, though this one is the better melody/song. Even in like “Only You” and “Yes/No” there’s a bunch of sadness naturally present in her timbre.

Ladies’ Code – “Lorelei”

One of the best things that Ladies’ Code did when they finally came back is they let MonoTree take over.

EXO – “Miracles in December”

I flippin’ love this song so much. Sad Christmas is definitely my #1 ranked Ballad Aesthetic. Korean version, Chinese version, I don’t care, it all bangs.

2BIC – “Last Goodbye”

Ah my favorite big ballad boys. “Last Goodbye” works better than even some of their OST tracks because the duo has the tendency to overdo it when the arrangement is a bit heavy.

EPIK High – “The Benefits of Heartbreak”

Are sad raps with vocal hooks ballads? No, otherwise like Lil B would have like 9239274 ballads. He only has at most 50.

——

Sojung – “If You Were Still Here” (Live)

Sojung sounds great and looks healthy here. When she falls off that “내가around 2:36, the agility she has is absolutely mad.

Punch – “My Everything”

I’ve been really enjoying the new album, and this track is getting the run on music shows. I prefer “I’m Jealous” myself but this one is more definitively a ballad. I’ve noticed her breathiness tends to break down a little bit during live performances but hey that’s what makes it real.

~~~

Plenty of requests to work through so expect a new Roundup sooner than later.

About Hojo

Avatar
Big honkin' hot take machine