Monday, April 22, 2013

Artist Of The Day: Lee Hi

After a powerful run on the first season of hit Korean music competition show K-Pop Star, Lee Hi released "1, 2, 3, 4," her debut single, right off the bat. Though the understated jazz single received mixed press overseas (particularly considering her not-quite-fully-developed persona), domestic response was far more positive. And sure, the rapid turnaround time raised questions of whether she would follow in the fading tracks of other reality stars, but her new single "It's Over" demonstrates that she's far more potent a force than anybody expected.

Lee Hi (more accurately, her producers) has figured out how to best wield her smoky, textured voice; her phrasing on "It's Over" is equal parts playful and wise, as she lingers a little bit on the slower phrases before raising her volume as she declares, "I never want to ever see you again!" The instrumentation is just as colorful, with swirls of lounge piano in the verses and a brass ensemble lending the choruses some weight. The accompanying video connects the dots between featherweight pop candy and homespun jazz spirit, depicting absurd situations but letting the music provide the deeper emotional context (if you're getting away with tying your douchebag teddy bear boyfriend to a rocket and flying him to Mars, you're doing something right). Not all that's light and fluffy is necessarily empty on calories--and many would argue that's just what Lee Hi's proving in her pop playground.

Lee Hi's first album, aptly titled First Love, is now available worldwide.

No comments:

Post a Comment