[Review] Summer Hate – Zico ft. Rain

Returning last week was Zico with the mini-album Random Box. It has taken a while, but as promised, here is the review for the title track from that mini-album, Summer Hate. This is Zico’s first release since the chart-topping and Tik-Tok trendy Any Song hit. Joining Zico is Rain, who many may know is a popular soloist for his many KPOP hits during the 00s. More recently, Rain has been attracting attention with his 2017 GANG comeback (though it has been trending for all the wrong reasons). It is interesting to see two very different trends in the industry and it does make you think about what song these two will put out, given their more recent viral history.

As the next instalment in Zico’s discography, Summer Hate comes off as a pretty weak track. Summer Hate is all about the annoying Summer heat that people have been and will always go through during Summer. It is a unique topic and concept, but I feel that the potential ended up being wasted due to poor execution. As it is a Zico self-produced song, the song is of the hip-hop genre and has a sing-song delivery that I believe is ill-suiting for what Zico was trying to get at. Everything comes off as very emotionless. I don’t get any of that annoyance of the Summer heat that the lyrics are trying to convey from his delivery or the overall feel of the song. When I think of annoying Summer heat, I think of unbearably hot concrete that will burn the sole of your feet if weren’t careful. Or the urgent need for a cool drink after a five-minute walk to the shops. There is a bit of energy to each of these scenarios and I feel that is the missing piece to this song. His intention was probably to make the song sound lazy, as one would feel during the hottest time of the day. But I don’t think it ever hits that mark. I do admit there were a good beat and melodies in this song enough to make the song bearable. I like the saxophone in the instrumental. But this all wasn’t enough. Finally, the other issue with the track was Rain’s featuring. Did he even feature in the song, as it sounded like Zico throughout the entire track? I was waiting for some of Rain’s distinct vocals, but they never appeared!

Unlike the song, the video was well executed. It showed the concept of heat quite well, though quite exaggerated for most of the video. Some examples in the music video included cooking of food on the concrete floor (my personal favourite in the video), the melting of metal and the clothes catching on fire. My main issue is with their attire during some of the scenes. One of my personal pet peeves is when people complain it is too hot and they are wearing inappropriate clothing, such as Zico and Rain’s long sleeves at the end of the video as they melt away. If they melted away in shorts and a t-shirt, then I wouldn’t be making such comments as the video would make more sense. It may make them look good, but honestly, who looks good on a boiling hot day where everything is melting away?

There is a bit of choreography during the chorus, which seems to be choreographed to be suitable for TikTok. After all, Zico has restarted the TikTok trend with this comeback, following its success with Any Song. It is suitable and reflects the lyrics well.

Song – 5/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 7/10
Overall Rating – 6/10

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