Wednesday, February 19th, 2020

GFriend – Crossroads

Not a Britney tie-in…


Ryo Miyauchi: GFriend began to trade that ’90s R&B synth whine for string arrangements a few years ago, subtly transitioning their music from youth nostalgia to mature contemplation of the present, and “Crossroads” completes that transformation. The production resembles the sentimental seiyuu themes released under their Japanese label King, which suits the narrative about a relationship parting in two separate ways. The friendship drama follows a familiar rise and fall that they’ve already revisited a few times now, but they nevertheless hit it with precision.

Joshua Minsoo Kim: I can never get over the stuffiness of GFriend’s singles. There are so many songs in Korean pop music history that aim for this sort of decorum and style of vocalizing that don’t feel so suffocated and rigid. The finger snaps are oddly refreshing, and things lighten up a bit mid-song, but the rest is maddeningly stiff.

Brad Shoup: Combines Jepsenian faith in the song with a steroidal Bacharachian sensibility. The pace goes so hard I thought we’d get a breakbeat.

Katherine St Asaph: The mixture of idol vocals, R&B piano chords, and dreamy cinema and/or Bee Gees strings doesn’t really cohere on the verses, but does come together, sweepingly, in the chorus. Usually it’s the other way around.

Michael Hong: “Crossroads” soundtracks a specific scene: the one where the main character of an anime receives some sort of burst of energy and morphs in blinding light into a stronger version of themselves. Sadly, GFriend don’t achieve the same transformation, as the group’s vocal theatrics are dulled by their incessantly cluttered background.

Jacob Sujin Kuppermann: The combination of the strings (sweeping, vaguely Disneyesque) with the driving bassline and ticking guitars works in GFriend’s favor– there’s a sense of motion throughout, of searching but not quite finding. Other flourishes are less useful, like the distorted guitars at the end or the start-stops throughout. The vocal performances are a wash, with no particular depth of emotion, but it’s all a pretty journey nonetheless.

Reader average: [4.66] (3 votes)

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3 Responses to “GFriend – Crossroads”

  1. what a weird cover of the madoka magica OP

  2. I mean E’s not WRONG….

  3. (My previous comment got eaten)
    E is right in ways more than just arrangement style. Crossroads is using the Royal Road progression, the same as the Madoka Magica OP, but more hilariously, also the same progression as the Rickroll.

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