K-POP / KOREAN CULTURE / MUSIC VIDEOS / REVIEWS

[Review] Bbi Ri Bba Bba by Narsha of the Brown Eyed Girls

Narsha of the Brown Eyed Girls is going solo this season and she’s definitely causing some jaws to drop with her outlandish concepts.  I, for one, am simultaneously relieved and enthralled by Narsha’s volition to take an unconventional route for her solo debut.

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Rather than going sexy and powerful or cute and vulnerable (as most woman in Korean music do), she’s taken the best of both worlds and tapped into a more creative mind set.  Both her self titled album ‘Narsha‘ and the MV to her single ‘Bbi Ri Bba Bba‘ expose what I see as a musician’s full will to indulge themselves in their ideas and visions of their work.

In fact, you can dissect Narsha’s MV (below) and discover her intentions and reasonings, something I’ve found relatively pointless in most other Korean pop music videos.

To me, she’s making art.  I’m referring to the video, of course, because – as you’ll see below – it involves her, the prominent male figure and by extension us as the audience, as well as the world itself (i.e. the looming religious references).  I can’t efficiently unravel this video because I’m not fluent in Korean and part of doing so is understanding what she’s singing (someone totally should, though).

Musically, however, I can vouch for.

There’s some serious juxtaposition in this song that drives me insane. Particularly between the verses and the chorus.  ‘BRBB’ begins with a dash of ominous sounds and forceful off-beats and a minimalistic instrumentation that I thought would lead into a quicker chorus.  I hear it all the time, so I was caught off guard when that wasn’t the case.  The chorus parallels the verses with an airy and lingering stream of stretched out notes wrapped up in this beautiful melody.  Even the instrumentation changes here.  I could replay this chorus all day.

Also, BRBB’s structure is distinct in that it lacks (at least for me) a climax.  It kind of builds up this ridiculously melodic song right up to a precipice and before you know it, it just leaves you hanging there.  I don’t know if I love that or not, but it’s definitely different.

This song is simple, yet all the nuances make it sound much more complex than it really is. Probably because Narsha has a fantastic team behind her and she knows how to deliver like no other right now.  It’s hard to lose her when she’s so commanding in her work. As a listener, I can feel her presence in the music, but actually seeing her completes the package.  It’s kind of like smelling your favorite food before digging in.

Those are my thoughts, so how do you feel about this song?  Was it what you were expecting, or is it lacking?  How about the video?

Comments are welcome~!

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14 thoughts on “[Review] Bbi Ri Bba Bba by Narsha of the Brown Eyed Girls

  1. I fully agree. Narsha is my favorite from BEG, she has a lot of personality and I was glad to see various aspects of it in her MV as wall as in her album.

  2. Narsha is my favourite BEG as well. i wasn’t too sure when i saw the concept photos but i’m completely won over after watching the Bbi Ri Bba Bba mv. Narsh is very talented and what i got from watching the video and reading the translations was the idea of a whole new world that seems great and happy at first but at it’s core is quite dark, sinister and scary.

    just yesterday i read a short story online set in the future where Earth is destroyed and humans are relocated to another planet where they live in the basest of means and are ruled over by lizard-like aliens they call ‘the Benefactors’. i seriously believe this song moves along the same subject lines, it could be the story’s soundtrack…

  3. Can’t watch the vid right now but i love the song! What did you think of the other tracks on her album?

    @Eccentric that sounds like an Octavia Butler story I read earlier called Blood Child. Was that the one you read? If not you should read it – it’s awesome. You too, McRoth

    • I enjoyed all of the songs except Queen B. It dragged on a little much for me. And it sounded cheesy, but the up side to it is that it showcased Narsha’s range. I believe she hits some high notes in there somewhere.

      The others, though, I love.

      Note to self: Read Blood Child

      :D

    • nah the story was not by Octavia Butler at least i don’t think it was because i stumbled across it on a Canadian SF site. now i think about it, it does sound like a Butler piece. i’ve read most of her stories but there were hard to find in the UK but now i’m in Nigeria, i guess i can just order them online from the US…

  4. I went to a Korean restaurant for dinner last night, and “Bbi Ri Bba Bba” got played on the radio! Twice! It made me happy =]

    In terms of the song, the MV and the album cover, I think the concept is Lady Gaga Fame Monster-inspired. But classier.

    Narsha’s entire mini-album is beautiful. Definitely one of the best in K-pop this year!

  5. I think the video was lacking a little, but you have to remember that I’m a jerk/snob/picky person. Still, the song is good and the quality of the music is way more important. I am really liking Narsha as a soloist.

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