GFriend are a six member group from Source Music, who debuted in 2015. They are rapidly becoming one of the most well known girl groups in the industry and have a slew of hits to their name, despite being a fairly new group. Having received their first win with “Rough” in February 2016, they have gone on to sweep music show awards with every comeback they have had. Now they have comeback again with a new song, and a new sound.

Fingertip

Song

I’m always a little bit wary when it comes to groups changing concepts. It can go really well for them and help them progress as artists (BTS’ “War of Hormone” to “I Need U”, for instance), or it can confuse the audience in relation to the sound and image of the group (GOT7’s “If You Do” to “Fly” to “Home Run” for example). Girl groups especially seem to suffer from the rapid change of image, and it can be unusual to listen to their back catalogue and current single (CLC springs to mind!). I need not have worried about it with GFriend. This song seems to ooze GFriend no matter what way I look at it. From the lyrics, to the sound, to the choreography, the members own this song. I love that it sounds like it was always there, always a GFriend song, even though the concept is very different from their previous releases. The image they have in this is so much more powerful, so supremely confident. They are not timid little fawns, but perfectly aware of what they want from life and love, and are completely unafraid of getting it.

The lyrics in  this song are possibly some of my favourite lyrics to date. They speak of knowing the effect the members have on their prospective partner, and how they can use that to capture the person for themselves. The ease of which this can happen, and the fact that the members have them “at their fingertip” is just the icing on the cake. These lyrics aren’t unsure, they aren’t tentative. They are stating that GFriend knows what they want, and they aim to get it. It’s such a refreshing concept for kpop, where so often the girl groups have this almost “Lolita” type, cutesy, child like way of looking at love and relationships. This song is certainly not that. There is no hesitation in what the lyrics are expressing.

The moment the song starts, you cannot escape the 80s vibe from it, in the best possible way. The synthesizer and bass are present from the second the song begins, and only get better as the song progresses. This song has a unique sound that doesn’t sound like anything else in the charts right now, or even the past 6 months. It reminds of me a 1980s style, comedy crime show opening theme, and I cannot help but smile at that thought. It suits the lyrics well and the music itself works in way that seems to be perpetually building the song up the entire time, even when it slows down. The sliding guitar riffs only serve to complement the already rocking 80’s ambiance.

The chorus has that all important “killing part” that is so elusive in Kpop. The part that everyone who hears it cannot help but sing along to, and I think that “Tang, tang, tang!” is going to be be the new “Shy, shy, shy”.

 

Video

“Fingertip”, as an MV, is a complete 180 degree turn from where GFriend videos usual go. The sweet dresses, epic choreography and adorable aegyo are all gone, but at the same time, this isn’t a “sexy” concept. There is no butt shaking, or chest grabbing (not that there is anything wrong with that!), but this seems to be a more “girl crush” atmosphere. GFriend own it. The confidence that they have in this video spills from the screen and is infectious.

The MV has two different themes that they tie together. I believe that we see the girls in various states of sleep, especially Eunha, and then we see their souls/essence leave their body. It’s a state of astral projection, wherein the dream state they get to be badasses, who kick ass and take names. The concept works perfectly with the certainty of the lyrics.

We see hints to their previous MVs also, in the glass beads, clocks and butterflies, all of which have appeared in previous GFriend MVs. It’s a nice homage to where the girls have come from the beginning of their career.

There are beautiful shots in this MV, wherein the lighting and the composition of the frame complement each other perfectly, such as the shot of Eunha as she is leaving the star filled sky into a doorway. It’s an ethereal image and is one of my favourites from any music video this year. The lighting, as always in GFriend’s videos, is stunning, and is nowhere better demonstrated than in the room with the light bulbs. We only see the members dance in here for a few shots, but it compliments the overall tone.

Summary

Another hit for GFriend, no question. They are going to sweep the music shows again, because, realistically, who can resist an 80’s infused, guitar riffed, sass-filled bop?

If you liked GFriend, and want to hear more, I would definitely recommend checking out their albums. You can’t go wrong with their lead singles though. Start with “Rough”, “Navillera” and “Me Gustas Tu”. Just remember they will sound different!