Though I had not expected much from them upon their debut, Ghost9 have quickly gone onto craft a truly interesting discography with songs that go straight for the jugular and arrangements that reach for the sky. They have proven themselves to be conveyers of some truly immense music and their versatility completely shattered my initial perceptions of what I had expected of them. And though they still remain a little rough around the edges, their strongest attributes are on full display with the driving Seoul.
When I’m on the lookout for a great song, nine times out of ten I’m looking for an amazing chorus. And that can be seen through many of my favourite songs of the year so far. And on my first few listens, Seoul seems as though it’s well on track to join that club. The chorus here is just fantastic, pulsing forward on a driving instrumental that supports a gorgeous multi pronged melody heavily reminiscent of Hey! Say! JUMP’s brilliant Last Mermaid from last year. It’s easily the strongest moment of the track and continues the groups knack for having some truly stunning centrepieces. The breakdown that follows isn’t the best but I like how it’s only repeated twice instead of three times. A nice reversal from what happened with December’s W.ALL. The EDM synth work that underlines the chorus is a musical soft spot of mine and I love the forceful performance the boys give during this segment too.
The rest of the track is a little more mixed. Ghost9 have always ridden the fine line between generic and inventive and many of the samples used during the opening verse veer a little too close to the more grating elements of modern day boy group tracks. The stuttering siren loop isn’t the most ideal of instrumental choices but it’s countered by a strong performance and aggressive percussion that keeps even the more potentially cloying moments of Seoul enjoyable. I could do without some of the vocal processing but it’s not to the point where it becomes unbearable. And while I would really love a whole track that harnesses the all killer no filler energy of Seoul‘s immense chorus, this is an excellent step in the right direction.
Final Rating: 9/10