Navigating Ladies’ Code musically feels like something that will take a lot of time. After a quiet but likable return with Galaxy at the beginning of the year, and Sojung’s stint on the show Girl’s Spirit (which I will eventually make a post about), LC have thankfully decided to not wait too long before gracing the masses with a new song.
Having addressed the elephant in the room in Galaxy, I am happy that The Rain seems to distance itself while reaffirming who Ladies’ Code are. Their sound has always been very funk and Disco vibed. Very dance oriented. The Rain still takes on the very somber tone they have picked up with Galaxy. The song seems very spacious and dark in tone. A little cold, almost reminding me of rain (there is actually a sound that sounds like an electronic rain drop). If one were to compare it to some of their older songs, it is easy to see just how different they are. So Wonderful and I Hate You were both somber tracks for the group, but had this liveliness to them that made them just as fun to dance to. Here The Rain feels more mature, and while geared toward performance lacks the special brightness.
And this is what makes The Rain fascinating. It is a reminder of an old Ladies Code, while also finding them in a new, older space. The group had been gone for two years and hit terrible tragedy. Change was not only expected it was mandatory.
With everything about the song, I think the biggest thing is how forward their voices are. Normally K pop vcan get lost in layers of sounds and trinkets. The voices of the group can be so hidden that it is hard to really understand them. Also a lot of groups tend to have to sing in a very uniform way (unless you are the main and lead vocalist, where you are almost always expected to shine). Here all their voices are left as is. Zhuny’s voice is not perfect (And she feels less like a singer in comparison to Ashley and Sojung) but there is a slight darkness that welcomes the dreary pop tune. The only thing I wish was more prevelant were harmonies. They exist in small spaces in the chorus, but some smoldering harmonies could have really made the song for me.
The music video is nothing new. Pretty sets, and the dance shots were lovely. Instead it was the shots of Zhuny walking outside, filter different, and it ending with the shot of the umbrellas falling out the sky. That was lovely. I do wish more videos did better with playing outside of their favorite editing techniques (zooming in, bright color schemes, random shots of random meaningless objects). I wish there was more development in their own personal spaces. I just wish for more. But at the same time, the video was lovely as is.
The Rain is not perfect, but all things considered, it is just what the group needs. Somber in tone with a refreshing execution that allows all three to shine in their own way, this comeback feels like a late in the game winner that will likely not get the attention it deserves.