Thursday, December 8, 2011

Review: U-KISS–“Tick Tack”

U-KISS now keeps time with their entire bodies.

Did you like the song?
Insert Ke$ha joke here. Another synth-heavy, catchy, fun, slightly mysterious and otherworldly track from U-KISS, except this time in Japanese! While I don’t like it as much as their “Neverland,” mainly because I don’t think the chorus is as powerful, I did enjoy this one instantly, and it has since grown on me—as expected from U-KISS. And I love that you can just blast those two tracks at maximum volume. Yeah, when it comes to K-pop music, as you can probably tell from my favorite songs list, I absolutely adore U-KISS. It seems like as long as they stay fast-paced, they can’t go wrong for me.

U-KISS members Tick Tack white

(Back row standing:) AJ, Kiseop, Hoon, Soohyun, Kevin, Dongho, (front row sitting:) and Eli.

What was your favorite part of the song?
I love the rap! And AJ’s “we have no choice” line. And every high note Soohyun sings. I don’t know, I went through trying to pick my favorite parts, but I couldn’t—the whole song is made up of equally good parts. :)

Does the English make you want to rip your eardrums out?
I think since the infamous member change-up, U-KISS has somewhat gotten its act together when it comes to its English lyrics. (This is good for them, since Eli and Kevin are native speakers, but less amusing for me because I don’t get to make fun of lines like “You plug in me, you plug in, control on me.” Classic.) Still, there’s some very…curious English here. Not necessarily wrong, just curious. It’s like they’re affecting a high-class British accent with “tick tack” instead of the normal “tick tock.” This could lead to some unfortunate misunderstandings…

Tic Tac mint

Just how bad is your breath, U-KISS? :/

Also, their repeated use of “I shall,” while grammatically accurate, is not said in America (we’d use “I’ll” for “I will”). If you say, “I shall be here” to anyone but a British lord or lady or a grammar nerd, you will definitely get some odd looks because people will think you’re being haughty. (Also, how does U-KISS plan on “turning on the broken light”? If a light’s broken, how is that going to work?)

U-KISS members Tick Tack grey

AJ, Hoon, Dongho, Kevin, Eli, Soohyun, and Kiseop.

Did you like the video?
I swear U-KISS stole the big clock set piece from 2PM’s Wooyoung’s bachelor pad in “Ultra Lover.” Aside from that…I didn’t complain about this with U-KISS’s song “Neverland,” where they could have picked literally a billion concepts but chose dancing in the snow, but now that it seems to be recurring, maybe I’ll explore it a bit more. In a song called “Tick Tack” (even if it should be tick tock), aren’t there a million clock or time-themed concepts you can do? Take IU’s “You and I” for example—she had a full time-travel storyline and a dance where her hands were the hands on a clock. I’m not suggesting that U-KISS needs to copy IU, but I certainly feel like they could have gotten really creative here and didn’t.

Some ideas: maybe an Alice in Wonderland style like BIGBANG’s Seungri in “VVIP” (preferably minus the pedophilia), or maybe go with a horror feel—I’m thinking a creepy mansion with old clocks everywhere—or a story where time is absolutely of the essence because a bomb will go off or something bad will happen if the clock ticks down…those are rather cliché, but I’m sure U-KISS’s creative team could come up with something better than the guys standing around a big clock holding little pocket watches and doing pendulum moves with their heads. Sure, I think it looks good, but the sheer waste of potential is starting to grate on me. U-KISS, you’ve got great songs, now stand up and make people really notice your videos!

Was there a storyline? If so, did it make sense?
Aaaah, look at the U-KISS logo ticking away in the bottom right-hand corner during the first five seconds of the MV and at the end!

U-KISS Tick Tack clock logo gif

One of my favorite parts of the video!

You know, just once, I’d like U-KISS to be treated to the high-quality furnishings they deserve. No more being left scantily-clad in shady back alleys, under flickering fluorescent lights, in the rain, in the snow, etc. For “Tick Tack” they are again in one big dilapidated room, but this one is far more decrepit than usual. The floor is literally just dirt, and there is broken glass everywhere. There is a bed frame but no mattress. And no matter how much Kevin may want to, you can’t turn on a broken light. U-KISS live like the heroin addicts of Kpop.

U-KISS Tick Tack screenshot

It’s a new low.

Was the dance cool and distinctive?
The highlight of the video! Yeah, it’s pretty cool. The boys literally use their bodies as pendulums, so there’s a lot of interesting back-and-forth moves. It’s not as clean as I’m used to with U-KISS, but I think that’s due to both its intensity and the suits they’re wearing. But I always appreciate how U-KISS don’t dance like individual singers in a void. They’re always aware of the other members in their choreography with little touches; it’s both cute and sexy.

Aside from that, their backwards body wave is awesome:

U-KISS Tick Tack gif dance body wave

The guy equivalent of Sistar19’s “Ma Boy” dance.

Do the members look good?
Always! I like the shiny ties and suits.

U-KISS members names Tick Tack

In age order: (top:) Soohyun, Kiseop, Eli, AJ, (bottom:) Hoon, Kevin, and Dongho.

Also, Kiseop: Elvis much? Oh well, you are always so lovely.

U-KISS Kiseop Tick Tack

Kiseop has left the building.

Which member stood out the most?

U-KISS Tick Tack gif


I have to say, Soohyun really stood out here. It’s usually either him or Kevin because they get so much damn screentime. But I was pleased that each member seemed to get at least a few great moments to himself (I was especially pleased that Kiseop was onscreen a lot!).

Do you like it enough to buy the song?
Yup! I said I would be a happy camper if U-KISS kept putting out tracks like “Neverland,” and so I am. :)

Any ending thoughts?
I’m a big fan of Kevin, but the more I see of them, the more the other members keep trying to change my bias…

Boyfriend’s one-liner:
“I’m so disappointed that there wasn’t an alligator or crocodile.” [I think only Peter Pan nerds will get this. My bf actually remembered this group from their “Neverland” MV and thought they both should have been more Peter Pan-themed.]

Thanks for reading! Please share your comments below! :)


  1. just thought i'd point out that the reason for the spelling of "tick tack" was because that's how it is spelled and pronounced in japan (although this is romanized, of course). thus, since this was their japanese debut, they spelled it appropriately.

  2. Thanks for the clarification; that's very interesting. :)

  3. I'm so confused as to how I've loved U-Kiss for all these years, but only now watched this MV all the way through. I love it, but apparently I didn't before, and now I want to see more of Kevin dancing (though I think Eli is my bias, but I've got a maknae thing going on, so there is a very real chance I don't just want to adopt Dongho and squish his face in a totally platonic way).

  4. Kevin dancing = sexiest thing ever! I think with U-KISS I just can't convince myself that Dongho is the maknae...he just so rarely acts like one!