Review: Orange Caramel – “My Copycat” Is Predictably (And Unpredictably) Marvelous

orange caramel my copycat cover

At this point, Orange Caramel operates in a gleeful paradox. The group is consistent but their concepts are not like anything else in the K-Pop scene. They don’t shock but it’s incredibly hard to predict what they’re going to do next. The only thing that can be confidently predicted about each Orange Caramel release is that it will be memorable and it will stick in your head for days. “My Copycat” doesn’t disappoint as Orange Caramel continues to raise their game to their own oddly awesome levels.

As much as Orange Caramel productions are rarely as much about the music as they are about the concept and music video, it would be remiss if there wasn’t a shout out to the glorious saxophone riff that sustains “My Copycat.” Sure, sax riffs are a dime a dozen these days but the ever-so-addictive sax riff is equal parts irresistible and maddening, a combination that wonderfully describes Orange Caramel productions. The song worms its way into the ears whether one wants it there or not. The EDM beat that backs the sax moves at a delirious but deliberate pace which gives “My Copycat” the feel of an upbeat madhouse. Orange Caramel adds to the insanity as Nana, Lizzy and Raina are auto-tuned with just enough sheen to give the vocals an alien feel. The trio sounds as if they were airlifted from some Dr. Seuss worldscape and it perfectly fits the manically driven beat. There’s no room to breathe in “My Copycat” but that is oddly suiting for a song that sounds like it’s from outer space.

Conquer Earth please.

Conquer Earth please.

The video is fairly genius as far as Orange Caramel productions go. The group stays within its palette of bright colors, monochromatic neon sets and oddly cute choreography but it frames them in a flexible concept which suits Orange Caramel’s love of odd imagery over coherent sequences. By making the video a battery of “Where’s Waldo” and “Can You Spot the Difference” cuts, Orange Caramel is allowed to basically do whatever the fuck they want. Lizzy with bananas and primates? Sure, why not! Raina’s shadow having a mind of its own. Go for it! Orange Caramel having the literal eyes from hell? NO PLEASE STAWP.

Welp.

Welp.

The “anything goes” nature of Orange Caramel becomes incredibly charming and the video lends itself to multiple watches to just catch the all the not-so-subtle differences between frames (more so because the cuts come so quick and fast). As for the performers, Orange Caramel has reached a comfort level with being the odd balls of K-Pop which is fairly apparent in “My Copycat”. The trio move with such a precise cheer that is perfectly robotic. They smile in such a way that is transparently manufactured. And yet, it all works together because Orange Caramel has managed to build its own world with its own set of rules that only they are privy to. There’s never a moment where Orange Caramel blinks or acknowledges the absurdity of their act. Their full commitment to their own brand of madness is what makes “My Copycat” and Orange Caramel so successful.

It's glorious.

It’s glorious.

Let’s be clear. Being unique isn’t inherently the same as being good. However, what Orange Caramel has managed to pull off consistently over the course of their career has been consistently unique and consistently good. Part of their charm is undoubtedly due to the fact that there’s so few acts to compare them to but the much larger part of Orange Caramel’s charm is due to their perfect marriage of inescapably catchy beats and eye-snagging concepts. Most groups are lucky to hit on one of those elements but Orange Caramel has managed to hit on both with pretty much every single release and “My Copycat” is no exception to that rule.

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5 comments

  1. Kpoptartsarebestpoptarts · · Reply

    Once again you’ve said what I was thinking, only much more eloquently. I thank my lucky stars that I found Kpop if only because had I not Orange Caramel wouldn’t be part of my life. And that would be a sad thing.

  2. black soshi · · Reply

    I like the video, and the song is typical OC. It would be really cool if they had any kind of input into the weirdness of their videos.

  3. Brilliant piece. Orange Caramel may very well be my favorite group in k-pop because they have a quirkiness few others can match. I especially like the “Where’s Waldo” theme–I think it makes the video relatable to those of us who can’t speak a lick of Korean.

    Keep up the good work, man. I’m a regular reader but am fairly bad about commenting.

  4. Quirkiness is clearly part of their brand, but I think OC’s biggest charm is their sense of fun. It makes them so lovable! This was a great song too, with the best, most brilliant & inane dance. Great review ❤

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