Glorious BIBI – Ulysses would have had himself lashed to a mast to hear this voice. But then, given her predilection for singing about uncomfortable topics, he might have ended up lashing her to something afterwards. And by uncomfortable topics, I mean things that aren’t about boyfriends, makeup, or fashion. She doesn’t pull any punches – indeed, in this video she looks to cop a few instead.
Korean girl groups and singers tend to one of two extremes: they’re either overtly sexy or overtly cute, and it’s rare that female singers get to avoid these two narrow paths. But BIBI is one of the few who’s succeeded, and she’s done it with style and sass, not so much by remaining above the fray as by wading right into it and doing whatever the hell she wants.
She’ll certainly get your attention – for starters, she’s got a unique voice that will sizzle along your nerves and jolt straight into your brain. I’ve described her voice in the past as something like melting chilli chocolate – warm and rich, but with a bite to it that’ll make your eyes roll. She’s done a couple of collaborations that I love – one that I’ve mentioned already (Hanryang, with Heechul, DinDin, and Min Kyung-hoon) and another to come (one of my faves, so stay tuned).
Then there’s the subject matter – you won’t get the full meaning unless you watch the lyrics video, but you can get the main drift just from the MV. And what a drift that is – she doesn’t hold back, and you’ve got to agree that yah, life can be a bitch. Note too that she makes no attempt to sugar coat it – when she’s at rock bottom, she’s down and dirty with no makeup, because that’s what life is. There’s no artifice, no prettifying – it’s just the ugly truth. Which is brave, in such a fiercely image-conscious industry.
I’d say this is one of her best, but then she’s got a lot of bests, and given her youth, she’s definitely got a lot more bests to come, so watch this space…