B1A4 – 10 Times

This is like the perfect video of the perfect holiday. The MV was released on 23rd April 2021, to celebrate the 10-year anniversary since their debut. Production is sensibly subtle – a good strong beat to keep the rhythm but minimal instrumentation, leaving the vocalists to shine. And oh man, do they shine – it’s one of their strengths, and they work it hard. There’s a recurring echo of fan cheers from past concerts, adding to the nostalgic feel – if you’ve never felt the thrill of being in the midst of a concert, then I want nothing to do with you.

It looks like a travelogue, and for good reason. Shot on Jeju Island, which is wall-to-wall beautiful scenery, I think they just took the boys (yes, I keep calling them boys, despite the fact that CNU would turn 30 in a couple of months) out for the day and let them loose. And when you turn these boys loose, this is what you get – goofy, affectionate, playing like a litter of puppies, making the world a nicer place. That’s another of their strengths – they’re quite close, and are not at all shy about showing it.

Stylistically, the look is vaguely hippy: beads and henna tattoos, with loose mohair knits plus CNU’s slightly daggy cardi in the signature BANA (fan club) pastel apple lime. This colour is echoed in the streaks in Sandeul’s hair, while Gongchan opts for a coiffure in a startling lipstick red, which looks surprisingly good on him. Meanwhile, CNU goes back to black and totally rocks a mullet, something that can’t be said for many 70’s rockers, but then the man rarely has bad hair.

So every element of this song and MV will push your ‘happy nostalgia’ buttons. If you like sweet harmonies and nice boys having fun in stunning scenery, then this is definitely the song for you.

Alas, the dance practice video is a tad weird – it’s hard enough to tell the boys from the backing dancers, but sometimes you can’t even tell the humans from the green jellyfish shapes (their latest lightstick design) floating up the walls. Definitely avoid the mind-altering pharmaceuticals if you watch this one.

Lyrics video as usual with English translation, Romanisation, and Hangul, colour-coded to show you which vocalist is singing.

So sit back, watch, and listen, and have a happy Gongchan day.

10 Times – dance practice
10 Times – lyrics
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