Lately I’ve been getting less into girl groups and more into boy groups I already like, as the amount of man-hating I see from the Bandwagon Girl Group fans is getting to be too much for me to handle. Plus boy groups are actually great. I’m planning on revising my Top 10 Male Group list (as well as my Top 10 Female Group list, but it’s not nearly as incorrect), and my Top Male Biases list, as well as posting a special feature about boy group songs in the near future, so be on the look out for those.
Since B1A4 is (Spoiler Alert: still) my favorite group, I need to take a break from my other post ideas and 4Minutes’ impending slayage to talk about B1A4’s new Japanese single, “White Miracle” (AKA “白いキセキ” or “Shiroi Kiseki”). Please note how Jinyoung looks exactly like Butthead on the cover.
Seeing as I’m not a Korean fan, and am an International fan, I don’t have an issue when my faves release Japanese songs since I’ll listen to whatever language my faves are singing in without it bugging me or whining about them not having a comeback. Considering I took a year of Japanese in college, I still remember some basics enough to understand what they’re saying occasionally, though I do understand more Korean at this point. Regardless, it’s a non-issue.
I had a feeling the song would be a winter ballad, and my gut instinct did not disappoint, as “White Miracle” is indeed a winter ballad. However, it’s much more listenable than any other winter ballad released, uh, ever. FYI, “At Gwanghwamun” is a fall ballad, so please don’t get it twisted. “At Gwanghwamun” is still life.
The music video is very simple, and quite low budget. You can tell it was shot with one camera and doesn’t even have any costume changes. Granted the boys did film the video in Japan according to Baro’s social media posts, but considering how high quality B1A4’s videos have been since always, it was a bit of a disappointment as a B1A4 video. But, I guess similarly to Kyuhyun’s video, this video does a a great job of highlighting the pretty song without any flash to take away, or better yet, distract, from it.
The boys do look as nice as ever, but Gongchan is on point for sure. It is impossible for him to look bad, honestly.
As for the song itself, I love it a lot, in case that wasn’t clear. Jinyoung’s songs are generally hit or miss for me, but this song actually impressed me more than anything he composed on B1A4’s 2014 releases. Many sources are falsely reporting that this is Jinyoung’s first original Japanese composition, however it is his second after “Beautiful Lie” from 1. This is his first original Japanese single composition.
While it’s clear “White Miracle” is a winter ballad, you can tell it has a bit of a twist considering the song structure and how it builds through the chorus and then again at the end of the song. I like how Baro’s first rap is more like his crooning style, and his second actual rap is actually structured at the end of the song, rather than smack dab in the middle. It’s also nice to hear Gongchan get more than two lines in the song, even if some of them were extremely auto-tuned. Sandeul as main vocal still has the most lines, however what I liked about the production is how layered many of the vocals sounded, espeically in the chorus as the MV implies all 4 vocals are singing. There is a lot of harmonization throughout the song, and I think B1A4 deserves a lot of credit for that since group harmonization seems to be rare in K-Pop unless you’re Super Junior or DBSK pre-split.
Honestly I hope that B1A4 will stick with a sound like this if they continually insist on moving in the ‘mature’ direction. The presence of ‘real instruments’ was definitely welcome, and the song still maintained a complex and interesting production. However, Jinyoung needs to step away from the auto-tune button. For the rest of his life as a music producer. He should be banned from it.
If you choose to buy the single you can either get special DVDs with the MV/Making of, or with Japanese versions of two of their better Korean songs from last year – “Who Am I” and “Glass of Water”.