[SINGLE] 東方神起/TVXQ – Still

I feel like grabbing a blanket and snuggling down on the couch in front of the fire with a mug of hot chocolate.

As soon as I saw 東方神起’s new single Still was a ballad I dreaded having to write a review for it. Luckily for me, the song didn’t turn out anywhere near as painful as I feared and I’d almost go as far as to say I like it. If I were having trouble sleeping on a cold night I would gladly have Still on repeat in order to put me to sleep. And I mean this in a good way. No, really.

東方神起 - STILL

東方神起 really like ballads, huh? It’s such a shame I don’t. As previously mentioned I do, however, have slightly more tolerance for Japanese ballads for whatever unjustifiable reason. There’s something about Still I can’t quite hate and despite its slow tempo it’s not particularly boring; instead of nodding off I am overcome by feelings of comfort and warmth. There is also something decisively Christmassy about it—I feel like grabbing a blanket and snuggling down on the couch in front of the fire with a mug of hot chocolate.

  東方神起 - STILL screen cap 02  東方神起 - STILL screen cap 01

Much to my grievance the video is fluffy as hell and I can’t stop watching it because of all the warm fuzzies it fills me with. Although the boys do nothing more but wander around and stare emotively at the camera, Changmin and Yunho are looking more than fine. 東方神起 have always, in my opinion, produced the highest quality J-Pop compared to other attempts made by fellow Korean groups and this is certainly reflected by their popularity abroad. While Still may not be anything outstanding the warmth that pours from the very depths of this track is bound to make it endearing to many. Even me.

One would assume that the B-side of a ballad single would in fact be more uplifting but this was not to be the case with 東方神起’s latest release. One More Thing carries on from where Still ended limiting the breadth of the single. It has a little more bounce to it but lacks the undeniable fuzz-factor of the title track. One More Thing is not a bad song, but not a great one either and probably won’t be earning a space in my playlist anytime soon.

The single is rounded out by One More Thing -SAKURA Version-, Still -Less Vocal- and One More Thing -SAKURA Version Less Vocal-.While this brings the total track count up to five, these varying versions are nothing more than a cheap way to bulk out the track list. Oh SM (or Avex in this case), why so tight on the budget?

Some things never change, I guess.