Friday, February 15th, 2019

Astro – All Night

This review is about the Korean group. For the tiny, adorable American rapper, please see “Astro (disambiguation)”


Thomas Inskeep: Oh, it’s a midtempo doesn’t-go-anywhere (even albeit with a pneumatic chorus and a rap break), what a disappointment; I was hoping for a Slaughter-esque party anthem. And on top of that, it’s not even a particularly good midtempo. 

Iris Xie: This is Mariah Carey at her most boring, split into 7 Korean boys. It’s sincere to the point of snoozy, and the hook isn’t catchy to capture the attention required to really take in the entire song. Kpop is often at its best when the disparate elements all combine and mesh together to form a strong feeling of elation, but this just feels like it is desperate to please. A song that definitely rides on choreography and flower boy-pretty faces to get it through. 

Ryo Miyauchi: Though the burst of synths and speedy drums in the chorus serve as a good hook, the real experience of “All Night” is settling in the airy, cozy pianos that turn more tender as Astro ruminate deeper about their crush. The music responds to the boys, growing warmer and fuzzier as they spend more time in their thoughts. Insomnia has rarely felt this comforting.

Alex Clifton: “All Night” takes a while to build, and once it hits the final chorus it feels spectacular. I wish it didn’t meander for quite so long before it finds its groove, but the wait is worth it.

Joshua Minsoo Kim: LDN Noise made such a huge impact in K-pop that it’s fairly easy to trace its embrace of contemporary dance music trends (and contemporary takes on retro styles of dance music) back to the songwriter/producer duo. I can’t say I’m fond of all their recent work, though, and Astro’s “All Night” is one such example. It’s all flash and no substance: pretty synths and crashing glass that only have the semblance of energy. It doesn’t really develop into anything either, something that’s a result of the limited dynamic range and unmemorable chorus. So many moments feel like they should be exciting — the chorus’s declarative hook, the moments during the rap verses where the instrumentation fades out, whenever the kick drum revs into overdrive — but the songwriting prevents it from getting there. At least they got the title right: zzZzZZZzz.

Jacob Sujin Kuppermann: The beat is the kind of 2000s-R&B + EDM-pop combo that rarely fails to trick me into at least paying attention to a song. Once “All Night” caught my attention, though, I found a lot to like — nothing revolutionary, but a charming set of vocal performances, with the harmonies carrying their weight, goes a long way.

Edward Okulicz: A game attempt to synthesise the Mariah/The-Dream ballad formula for big returns (Rocky’s rap flow almost sounds like Mariah on the second verse of “We Belong Together”), and “All Night” has plenty of glimmer even if it’s only reflection. I’ve got an endless weakness for lush, shiny pop ballads and this certainly is one of those even if it’s not particularly distinctive.

Will Adams: I promise this will be the last time I’m fooled by a song that ultimately has very little to offer but still sports a banging chorus. Pinky swear.

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One Response to “Astro – All Night”

  1. Oh I’m so embarrassed! there are only 6 members in this group, not 7, so my blurb is factually inaccurate.