COMEBACK: BAP’s “Coffee Shop”

The boys are back – for the millionth time! I know they must be tired, but their suffering is worth the enjoyment of all of us K-pop fans… right? (Yes.)

So at the behest of their record company, they come out with their next promotional release, “Coffee Shop”, a leisurely, romantic tune that is accompanied by a tranquil video with a comfortable Instagram-esque filter.

This is "Walden".

This is “Walden”.

The song is reminiscent of several other soft K-Pop songs, including Yoseob’s “Caffeine”, except this one is noticeably more languid and comfortable. “Coffee Shop” is certainly a pleasant listen, and as usual BAP manages to capture a specific mood and genre quiet skillfully, if not necessarily creatively. The piano tinkles nimbly in the background, and nothing louder than quiet snares compose the drumbeats. All the members of BAP get their chance to croon soothingly over the track, which is nice to hear. Even Himchan gets his part, and it’s not some kind of weird rap/monotone singing line!

As for the video, the first thing I thought when I watched it was that it looked really American. Well, I just realized it totally is American. At first I tried to locate it all to one city, but then became incredibly confused by the sheer number of landmarks that could exist in one metropolis. Then I smartly realized it was many cities! Think you spotted all the locations? Here are the ones I spotted, but I’m sure it’s not complete:

  • Santa Monica (The pier in the background as Youngjae reads, alone, on the beach. Where are your friends Youngjae?)
  • Los Angeles (Hollywood sign)
  • San Francisco (Cable cars, Golden Gate Bridge)
  • NYC (Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square)
  • Could be anywhere (Empty warehouse, suburbia) What is with the shots of suburbia, anyways? Who wants to see row after row of stucco houses with orange roofs?

All the locations really ruin the “plot” of this video, because they all end up in front of the same coffee shop (!!!) at the end of the music video and day. This is kind of impossible because they are thousands of miles/kilometers apart from one another, and I only see the boys strolling around on foot, not hopping onto planes. Clearly, the end is supposed to represent their never-ending loyalty to each other, because no matter where they are alone, at the end of the day they will all sit down and… have coffee together. Their unflappable leader Bang Yong-Guk awaits them like the patriarch. And he even ordered coffee for all of them! Sweet.

"I've been waiting for five hours, fuckers."

“I’ve been waiting for five hours, fuckers.”

This is a softer demonstration of their bond than in One Shot, in which they participate in a reckless, kind of stupid heist/shootout that leaves them all dead. Oh, except Youngjae is a traitor in that one! (That’s why he’s reading alone in this video.) Also note, he is reading The Five People You Meet in Heaven.

Just squint.

Just squint.

This is a book about a man who dies and goes up to heaven and presumably meets five people who have changed his life. IS IT A COINCIDENCE THAT THERE ARE 5 OTHER MEMBERS OF BAP, AND ALL SIX OF THEM DIED IN THEIR PREVIOUS MUSIC VIDEO?!?! Probably.

If you are irritated by the over-analysis, remember, they didn’t really give me much to work with. In the end, it’s really just a collection of shots of the members strolling around in clothing with varying levels of strangeness/casualness. It seems like they took some random shots as they were on tour/travelling throughout the United States, and I can’t fault them for always being busy. How much you enjoy the video depends on how much you enjoy looking at members of the male sex; these members, specifically.

But I gotta pick on Youngjae one more time. THAT HAT!

"Lookin' good, Youngjae."

“Lookin’ good, Youngjae.”

SONG: B+

VIDEO: C

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