Please note these special posts are designed to be long and may require some time to read (if you plan on reading the entire post). To help shorten the length, the music video will be inserted as hyperlinked titles, so feel free to click the title of each section to watch the video.
The Unit was a survival program by KBS (Korean Broadcasting Station) to help reboot the unsung and little-known KPOP acts of the industry (i.e. to give some groups and singers that second chance of debuting). The show was hosted by Rain and aired from October 2017 to February 2018.
With the impending debut of both the final lineup of the male (UNB) and female (UNI.T) groups (i.e. the end goal of all the contestants), I thought it would be nice to take some time to look back on the competition. This is a 3 part weekly special, which I will be looking at the performances and songs that emerged from the show.
This week’s (the 3rd and final part) post focuses on the songs that were performed during the Final Mission: Final Stage Battle. Note that I will be basing my reviews on the performances during the final episode.
Raise Me Up – Euijin (BIGFLO), Daewon (MADTOWN), Hojung (HOTSHOT), Feeldog (BIGSTAR), Kijoong (IM), Dongmyeong (MAS), Chan (A.C.E), Marco (Hot Blood Youth), Lee Geon (MADTOWN)
The song opens with a soft piano piece but progresses into an EDM track. Maybe because this has been done quite a bit already, it just seems a little plain. However, it was still decent to listen to. I feel like the song could have benefited with a more intense drop, channelling the same intensity as their dance break. The members did shine, showing off good delivery for the raps and amazing vocal work. Personally, the performance was a little boring to watch, with none of the moves impressing me. I think with a more intense instrumental or drop, there could have been a better set fo moves to complement the increased intensity. The main attraction is the dance break which gave that needed intensity that the song (and performance) lacked overall.
Dancing With The Devil – Rockhyun (100%), Jun (UKISS), Kim Timoteo (B.I.G), Ji Hansol, Donghyun (Boyfriend), Seyong (MYNAME), Jeup (IMFACT), Hangyul (IM), Suwoong (Boys Republic)
I think the killer part of the song has to be the line ‘Now I’m dancing with the devil‘, being the one part I want to hear over and over again. The song definitely feels a lot more intense, which the previous lacked. The chorus felt more flowy however I thought the instrumental was plain, not really living up to the rest of the song. I did like the pre-chorus, though. The performance was quite good, working well with the song. Once again, I think they could have enhanced the performance with a more intense set of moves to balance out that intensity. I did really feel like their facial expression looked a little devilish, which does suit the title of the song (and made the performance that little more captivating).
Ting – Semmi (Matilda), Somyi (DIA), Lee Suji, Jiwon (Park Sisters), Euna Kim, Yang Jiwon (Spica), Lee Hyunjoo, ZN (Laboum), Dan-A (Matilda)
First impression of the song was that it was a major letdown. But with multiple listens, the song does grow on you. The chorus was catchy, which was definitely the highlight of the entire song. However, there were some letdown. The verses were easily forgotten, the rap bridge wasn’t necessary and I thought the song ended a little too suddenly. The performance was cute, fun and lively. Some of the members, however, don’t really suit the concept, which felt something within the kid’s domain. However, it was still a decent performance to watch.
You & I – Euijin (Sonamoo), Woohee (Dal Shabet), Yebin (DIA), NC.A, Yoonjo, Yeoeun (Melody Day), Shin Jihoon, Chahee (Melody Day), Lee Borim
Once again, I have a favourite on this list. And another song on the female side of the competition manages to take over my list. With the sound alone, this song seems to match the age ranges of all the members (including the final line up). It has a mature yet bright sound. The chorus was nice and captivating, with the structure of the chorus being a highlight for me (and it sounded as a result). The verses weren’t that memorable however still pleasant-sounding. The raps were good, fitting nicely into the song, which the vocal work was equally as promising. The performance also felt more mature yet still managing to fit into the bright side of the spectrum.
In all these survival shows, there is one song that is dedicated to the fans, who have supported each individual contestant and the show. Sometimes these song are quite heartfelt and emotional. But Present wasn’t that. It evoked no tears, nor was it bittersweet. Instead, it felt cheerful and happy, which makes the ending for fans and these contestants a lot better (in my opinion). The vocals and raps were equally as nice, while the song had a nice melody.
Thank you for all reading these Special posts for The Unit. The first of the next set of Special posts will be revealed to you all on 2nd of May.