I really think this song should be called Coffee in English, but nonetheless, I digress…
EDIT: Callipygia is fighting with me that he is singing “Oh girl you like caffeine”, but I REFUSE to believe that’s true. THE VIDEO IS FILLED WITH COFFEE IMAGERY FOR PETE’S SAKE!
Yoseob (or Yoseop? My Korean bad), of BEAST/B2ST fame, has come out with a solo release. And the topic he used to introduce himself to the world as a solo artist was… Coffee!
This music video really tries to touch on this theme – that is, “coffee” and “hot coffee” and “caffeine” – in super super subtle ways. For instance, there’s a girl who is literally smokin’, because either she is smokin’ hot or because she’s smoking like a hot cup of coffee would:
If you can’t tell already, the choice of singing about coffee in this song has become an obsessive preoccupation of mine. How is this girl so bad to him, just like a coffee? How are coffees bad for you? Is it because she makes him really jittery, or perhaps she makes him want to urinate all the time? Or maybe he’s pondering the long-term problems of drinking coffee, being all, ‘Girl, you’re just like coffee cause you could give me cancer one day.’
One thing I really wondered about was that ornately decorative wooden heart Yoseob sticks inside his chest at the end. What is the symbolism of this? Is it because, with a heart so wooden, the corrosive nature of hot coffee will cause it to disintegrate? (Or at least stain a really gross brown/black color.)
I hope I don’t enrage anybody when I say this, because I’ve been seeing some pretty heated Youtube comments – I know you’re probably wondering, “JJY, why do you do this to yourself? Why read Youtube comments when they make you completely lose faith in the entire Earth?*” Because I’m a masochist, that’s why – but I think that it needs to be said. Both Callipygia and I made the same observation that this song reminds us of “That XX” by G-Dragon. I really don’t think whoever wrote this song was all, “That XX. Let’s make it like that.” There just happen to be some similarities. WHICH IS COO Y’ALL. (Like I said before, I’m a sucker for anything YG.) The disaffected way that Yoseob (I’m just sticking with that spelling for now) sings, the clear and simple acoustic guitar in the background, and instances of falsetto, all make “Caffeine” slightly reminiscent of “That XX”.
Honestly, I love this style of singing. It’s actually really refreshing in comparison to the gushy, overemotional ballads that litter most Asian music that I listen to, and Kpop is no exception. It has its own way of conveying emotion. We need more singing like this. I don’t know why I’ve just started advocating for this style but suddenly I feel extremely strongly about it.
Oh, and I would be doing this song/video a great injustice to not mention Junhyung’s triumphant presence. He has cool glasses, is what I’m saying, and I enjoyed his rap stylings.
Overall, I really enjoyed this song; it’s catchy, wistful, and as I mentioned has a disaffected singing style that I really appreciate. For whatever reason, the apathy moves me. The music video, in terms of ambiance and feel, is also well-done, although it still confuses me a lot. As this is the only song that I listened to more than once on Yoseob’s entire EP, I’m not sure if I have high hopes for whatever he chooses to promote next, but I’ll certainly be watching.
*If you really want to give up on all of humanity, try reading the comments under any article posted on Yahoo. It’s soul-crushing.