Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Review: Red Velvet - Umpah Umpah

As part of Red Velvet’s festival trilogy, the quintet released their latest mini-album "The ReVe Festival Day 2." To promote the mini-album, they released Umpah Umpah; weird title but anything from Red Velvet is weird. They are promoting under a "Red" concept (bright, playful) but definitely a pure one. I felt that "Zimzalabim" and "RBB" were fusion concepts of both Red and Velvet.


"Umpah Umpah" is bright pop song that features a robotic hook, funky basslines, and strong vocals from Wendy, Seulgi and Joy. As a follow-up, it is definitely a better song than "Zimzalabim" albeit less catchier version. Compare to their summer-theme title tracks, it is a step up from the overly childish "Power Up" but is a less festive, less weird and less aggressive version of "Red Flavor." It also features a melodic chorus that resembles Gabriella Montez’ "Walk Away." The only problem is that it sounds normal for a Red Velvet title track.


I expected nothing as I did not watch any teasers for this comeback. The whole vacation theme of the video reminds me of KARA's "Go Go Summer" and "Thank You Summer Love." Typical from a Red Velvet music video, it still features surreal imagery but with a few dark symbolism. I also loved the creative use of materials as waters especially when Irene was swinging, the water glossed up. The plot where Seulgi tried to fix the antenna was hilarious. Overall, the outfits were pretty for the girls and they look distinctive in the video. Irene shined because she appeared to have enjoyed making the music video.


Song: 7.5 out of 10
MV: 9 out of 10
Overall: 8.25 out of 10

Previous Comeback:

Friday, August 16, 2019

Review: MNL48 - Ikaw Ang Melody

The Philippines’ first idol group and sister group of AKB48, MNL48 released their fourth and second election single, titled Ikaw And Melody, Tagalog version of Kimi wa Melody. Their is a huge hype for this single as fans of the 48 groups anticipate the music video because the past music videos of their sister groups feature their oshis in their respective national costumes.


Like the previous singles, MNL48 released a Tagalog version of an AKB48 hit. The song features the same instrumentation and lyrical content. The overall mastering was good. I always felt that the MNL48 versions were not loud and overwhelming. Ikaw Ang Melody featured strong vocals and a faint Japanese accent, a step on the right direction as many casual listeners are turned off of the strong Japanese accent.


The video is one of their good videos. Planned to be set at a historical location, permit problem occurred which changed the video setting to a high-rise building and a popular cafe. Despite the fiasco, the directors were able to make a good video. It set them apart from their sister groups because it was set in a modern place while the members are dressed in traditional clothing. Although I would be impressed if the original plan was pushed through but I am content with the video. Talking about the new center Aly, I am glad that she became the center. Her appeal is unique because she gives off a East meets West aura. She looks expensive. The top three looks expensive.


Song: 8 out of 10
MV: 7 out of 10
Overall: 7.5 out of 10

Previous MV:


Friday, August 9, 2019

Review: Z-Boys - Holla Holla

Recently, Z-Stars released their latest single Singing for You. Z-Boys offered us with a new song and a music video titled Holla Holla which somehow reminds me of KARD.


Holla Holla gives off a darker and aggressive vibe compared to their inspirational debut. The synths are aggressive and loud. The beats are harder. The lyrics fit the instrumentals as it shuts off all the haters. There is a subtle swag in the music. Gai’s and Mavin’s rap were on point. Josh carries the singing part well. The vocals were not a highlight in this song because it is less melodic compared to their debut. The best part was the bridge because it features the key part. The way the rap builds up the iconic “Bottomline” part was just unpredictable.


Just like the song, the music video is dark. However, we can see their faces this time compared to No Limit. It feels like a continuation of No Limit with a bigger budget. The wide shots for the dance were great. The colored smoke gave us time to breathe. The outfits are well-fitted. I hope the next video will feature them in a lighter setting because it has been two music videos and they still have to charm us. Their MVs are all dark and aggressive which does not give their personalities to shine as they are a bit quirky in their variety show.


Song: 8 out of 10
MV: 8 out of 10
Overall: 8 out of 10

Review: Z-Girls - Streets of Gold

Last July 29, 2019, Z-Stars came back with a new single, Singing for You. This is their second release and their first comeback since February. The female team (except for Mahiro) of the Z-Stars, known as Z-Girls, released the bouncy euphoric bop titled Streets of Gold.


Streets of Gold is a huge leap from the Cheetah Girls-sounding debut What Your Waiting For. It features a stronger hook from maknae Bell, better rap flow by Queen, and powerful vocals from Carlyn, Priyanka and Vanya. It is a huge improvement because in the debut single Bell was almost unnoticeable and the vocalists were holding back but this time, they all powered up. It has a catchy, melodic and energetic tune. The instrumental features a folky minimalistic synths and Timbaland-esque beats that reminisce Madonna’s 4 Minutes.


The music video is a visual treat. Joanne (visual), Priyanka and Bell glammed up for this comeback; their beauties shine in the video, in contrast with the first video where Carlyn and Mahiro were the highlights. The three girls get to shine especially Bell where she was the most unnoticeable in the first video and Joanne because this comeback she has lesser lines. My only complaint is their haircolors as they are almost all blonde. Queen or Vanya should have sported a darker hair, not necessarily black, but could be brown. The hallway set gives me Pandora vibes. Overall, the set is better than their first video. The dance is on point but Joanne seem to be pushed at the back, probably because to minimize her awkwardness being taller than the other girls.


Song: 8.5 of 10
Music Video: 8.5 of 10
Comeback: 8.5 of 10

Sunday, July 16, 2017

TwoSome Place - Cebu

My sister is studying law at Southwestern University. Sometimes, we will go to Southwestern University. As I am also at school, I need a place to study. I prefer cafe as a place to study because the ambiance is just right and I loved watching people while studying. We were able to discover a cafe which is a few steps away from Southwestern University. It is adjacent with the university campus. The cafe is called TWOSOME PLACE. It is owned by Spouses Choi.
Reception Area
It is Ate (Mrs. Choi), a Filipina, who serves a cashier and waitress at the same time. Her Korean husband, Mr. Choi, prepares the orders. The price is affordable. There is also free wifi. The experience is worth it as you are going to be satisfied with the money you spent.
Seats near the Reception
Since the place is near at a university. This is a rendezvous for students after classes. It also serves as a place for study. Parents and guardians also hanged out here as they are waiting for class dismissal. One time it served as a place for meeting for an class association. 

More place to hang-out
It is very spacious. The design also maximizes the space. Like most Korean cafes, there is that place where people squat rather than sit. The lights also are not that glaring. It is also very clean and tidy. Designs are simple. frames and stickers make up for it. It compliments its calm ambiance, suitable for studying and waiting.  
The Princess is here seat
Another angle: The Princess is here seat

 I am not fond of this type of seat because I feel heavy each time I try to stand up. The place is cool (cold) enough. When it gets late, the place is just cold. I liked it but if you sit near the aircon, you'll get brain freeze.
Nevermind the incongruous haircolor
 I loved milk tea. That was my first order. They serve milk teas, shakes (recommended: cookies and cream), meals (chicken cordon bleu is delicious), ramen (spicy, potato, japagetti), and some confectioneries, coffees and more.
Deo Itao
Dramatic pose

More modelling

Best photo
I still continue to visit the place. It is one of the most satisfying cafes I visited. It has everything a good cafe can offer: wifi, aircon is working, good lighting, different types of seat, and food. If you happen to be near Southwestern University, it is best to visit the place. Service is nice as the spouses know how to accommodate customers. The vibe is calm and relaxing. I wish they serve more drinks because their menu is not the expansive. Anyway, they give a great experience.