Stray Kids - My Pace

 
 

 

It's been just over four months since Stray Kids debuted, and it seems they're keen on being quick to follow up on the heels of their hot debut. I've got to admit that after listening to their pre-debut tracks and more recently their debut album, I'm fairly interested in what Stray Kids has to offer for the current scene. I'll admit that my attention was elsewhere this past week or so, so I didn't have time to check out any teasers. I just went in blind and hoped for the best.

The Song

I'm not going to lie, the first time that I listened to the intro part of this song, I kind of cringed. It was a little too awkward and stiff. Then I realized that was obviously the effect that they were going for. The style used in this song really drew me back to a bit of an older style of Block B. Something like a mixture of "Very Good" and "NalinA," but also with a very Stray Kids kind of approach to it all. There's a mixture of seriousness and more of a joking nature, and it's a unique flavor that strictly belongs to them right now.

That aside, this song continues their trend of incorporating a mix of hard rock into their tracks, though this song is much more focused on the heavy brass horns that lend more to the verses of rap and hip-hop. I'm really not sure how they managed to make those two worlds collide and fuse together in a way that wasn't combative in the least, but damn it works well in this track. The mix of raps and singing during the verses keep things fresh and interesting throughout, and I actually think that the chorus is the tamest and most uninteresting part of the song. The hook, the bridge, and and the verses kind of had me believing that I should expect more, but the chorus just didn't hit me with the power I was looking for.

I definitely dug the rap sections the most. There was just so much energy and hype packed into the vocal presentation, and I think that's why I felt the chorus was so lacking. There wasn't the same amount of emotion in there, and instead we only got it from the hook and the rap verses. 

That all being said, I still liked this song, and I think that this is a great first comeback for the group. It's likely going to be overshadowed by Red Velvet, sadly, but fans should still be proud of what Stray Kids released today.

The Video

There is a lot going on in this music video. Even after watching it multiple times I undoubtedly have missed several things. There are so many times where the screen splits into multiple parts and shows multiple scenes, so there's pretty much a guarantee that you'll need to watch this one a few times over to make sure that you see everything at least on a surface level. This is a bit of a double-edged sword, but I do like some of the ideas that this technique presented - particularly when it was used to showcase both the singer and the choreography happening for that section of the song.

Speaking of which, the choreography for this song looked pretty great. It seemed like it matched the tone of the song, even during the rather harsh tonal shifts from silly and back to the harder hitting portions. The outfits in the video could have been a bit better, though. They were all kind just wearing some casual clothes that I found pretty forgettable, and I'd rather have seen them styled in a way that could have matched the song more.

Plot-wise, I really don't think much is going on. It just seems like a giant group of people partying inside of a parking garage and then in a tunnel. The locale of the tunnel was definitely nice as a backdrop, though, and I think that it provided the neat opportunity to use lighting that helped to contrast their silhouettes against in a way that felt logical and almost natural. 

I think a lot of the complexity in this video was in the editing, but that's not a bad thing by any means. I have to admit that I would have rather just seen a focus on the dancing and maybe a shot here and there of the individual members during their parts, though. Especially because it doesn't really seem like there was a point to much of what was going on. All in all, though, the video sufficed and I was definitely entertained throughout multiple viewings.

Conclusion

"My Pace" is a solid continuation of what Stray Kids has already established as their foothold. There were improvements shown for some portions, though I really do feel like the chorus was a letdown in the end. Still, if you've liked any of their previous stuff due to the nice influence of heavier guitars combined with more aggressive raps, than this is a great comeback to check out.