With their latest comeback “Touch My Body”, SISTAR proves that even their more easygoing singles can bring enough heat to power the long summer months.
If “Touch My Body” surprises, it’s with its relatively laid-back hip-pop beat. SISTAR singles usually vacillate between sensual disco numbers and energetic pop songs, so a more subdued warm backing track is a pleasant shift. Very low and slowly rolling synths contrast with sporadic whoops and an understated but incredibly fitting saxophone riff (please be aware that I have a very strong pro-saxophone bias in pop music). A lightly bouncing snare completes “Touch My Body” and the resulting package is fairly effortless and light, if a bit unfocused.
Luckily for SISTAR, they have a couple of vocalists who can make a more bare beat shine. Hyorin and Soyu both bring a slight brassiness to their lines which pairs well with the saxophone while Bora provides a pretty decent rap breakdown to give “Touch My Body” some variety just when things start to get a little repetitive. Dasom may never set the world on fire vocally but she’s utilized well here and gets a verse to herself. Per usual, Hyorin brings “Touch My Body” makes the beat sound a hell of a lot better than it would otherwise. She’s able to add just enough soul to “Touch My Body” to give the song an added boost of momentum that keeps it from being shapeless. The last minute of the song threatens to verge off into aimlessness but Hyorin is able to save it with some last minute vocal theatrics. “Touch My Body” may not have much immediate impact but that seems purposeful. The single works much better as a barbecue jam than it does as a concert anthem.
The video for “Touch My Body” tries to play off of the music’s casual fun vibe. The sets are wildly colorful, bright and appropriately summery. The set direction is also pretty good at filming the sets at wide enough angles so that one can clearly see that they’re sets which brings some meta-casual chicness to “Touch My Body” as if SISTAR was too busy having fun to even mask the fact that they’re not actually singing at a real apartment or real pool. The editing adds some great and whimsical comic book-like effects to really emphasize the breezy atmosphere which “Touch My Body” aims for throughout the video.
If the video fails at any point, it’s unfortunately in the choreography where the main move, a butt thrust, looks hilariously bad.
It’s as if SISTAR’s underwear are riding high or they’re trying to dislodge some turtle heads.
Aside from that, SISTAR moves well and the quartet look fantastic. Their styling and wardrobe looks on point and there are few groups who can make sexy look as fun as SISTAR. In fact, there may be no group which is better at selling a fantastical setting and impossible beauty as realistically as SISTAR does in their music videos. Their completely manufactured happiness looks so joyful, spontaneous and real on film which is a testament to the group’s talents outside of the recording studio (and undoubtedly a pivotal element of SISTAR’s success).
As far as summer releases go, “Touch My Body” isn’t SISTAR’s greatest (“Loving U” is perfect) but it’s a good, relaxing single which plays to SISTAR’s strengths. It gives Hyorin and Soyu plenty of space to smother the beat with some soul while Bora and Dasom are given enough to do to provide the final product with some needed vocal diversity. The video is a sneaky jewel as it’s charms (much like the song’s sax riff) build up slowly through its final moments to the point where a physical house party seems to manifest itself directly through SISTAR’s cheery will.
Like everything else in “Touch My Body”, the overall product operates at a slow burn. “Touch My Body” may lack the definitive punch of the group’s best work but SISTAR’s latest single is as infectiously fun and imminently re-playable as anything else that’s been released so far this summer.