Review: 4Minute – “Hate” Is So Good Until It Isn’t

4minute hate

Given how successful their last comeback was as a music video, 4Minute’s Skrillex-assisted effort “Hate” was going to have a lot to live up to. Unfortunately, while an EDM/hip-hop genre-masher conceptually plays to 4Minute (and Skrillex’s) strengths, “Hate” misses the mark by being too cute-by-half with its incongruous beat.

To start with the positives, everything surrounding the ‘drop’ in “Hate” is pretty sublime. The slow opening beat and 4Minute’s theatrically beautiful delivery does a fantastic job of playing against expectations and it serves as a reminder that 4Minute can do a hell of a lot more than energetic EDM music. The sets and 4Minute’s wardrobe during the non-drop parts are similarly cinematic and sometimes breathtaking, whether it be the opening shot of Gayoon in a white wedding dress being surrounded by a forest of flowers, Hyuna bringing some utterly fantastic shades to a golden desert or Jihyun bathing in an oddly-shaped white tub (seriously, the way that thing contours doesn’t make it look like the most comfortable place to take a bath).

4minute hate gayoon

THIS SHOT IS AMAZING.

4minute hate hyuna

SO IS HYUNA’S EVERYTHING.

4minute hate 3 jihyun

Littttttle claustrophobic looking.

The attention to lighting, the variety of camera angles and diverse editing techniques from the slow-motion shots to the smash cuts and even the way that the aspect ratio is played with at the start of the video all do an effective job of keeping the video visually interesting. Had it just been the slower, more methodically composed pieces of the song, “Hate” would have been complete fire. Sadly, “the drop” exists.

On some sort of elevated conceptual level, having the drop of a song entitled “Hate” be so jarringly different from its setup works because hatred is a wild emotion that is rarely collected or rational. However, the drop in “Hate” is so radically different and off-putting that it can’t help but drag down the entire music video with it. The transition from rich somber bass, keys and percussion to hard, hollow, sparse thwomps is abrupt and admittedly frustratingly catchy in a way that is definitely purposeful but doesn’t make it any more enjoyable to hear. The video’s aesthetic switch to hip-hop choreography shots also comes without warning and disappears just as quickly, which, again, works somewhat as a concept but just seems unfocused and randomly thrown together in execution (although I am a fan of the sweatshirt, jeans and Timbs look that the group swags out in at the end). On its own, the drop is fine as a hard and trashy beat. Embedded in “Hate,” it doesn’t add to the song so much as it competes for attention.

4minute hate 3123123

A Good Look.

While this discontinuity is likely The Point of “Hate”, the emphasized detachment between the drop and the rest of the song is so great that it only makes me think that both parts of the song would have been infinitely better off as their own tracks (or even videos) because both elements do a fairly good job of showing what 4Minute is capable of when it comes to the group’s try-hard hip-hop and slower pop efforts.

 

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15 comments

  1. I agree. When I watched that this morning, I was so excited hearing Gayoon get a chance to really show off her voice right at the beginning (She has a great voice and it gets shown off all too rarely) and I liked how it morphed to Hyuna’s rap, but then that chorus just annoyed the hell out of me.

    All I could do was hope it would end soon to get back to what was otherwise a good song. While some songs that change things up radically have really worked well (SNSD’s “I Got a Boy), this just doesn’t feel like a good fit. As you said it almost seems like there are two songs here that should have been recorded separately. I will say that Jiyoon and black leather are hard not to like.

  2. Love love love the visuals. Song is unfortunately all over the place.

  3. i think this song is cube’s solution to saving the work of making a separate pre-release. i’m so disappointed, but the good parts are indeed good

  4. Kpoptartsarebestpoptarts · · Reply

    I had a feeling you were going to go with the conventional wisdom here. Frankly, I love the drop. Maybe because it is so unexpected and jarring and doesn’t fit the typical old pattern that most songs do. You alluded to it yourself – hate is an emotion that ebbs and flows. It is not sustainable. I think the song reflects that perfectly.

    1. I like each part individually. It’s when they’re smashed together that the song loses me.

  5. My biggest problem with the videos was that the girls really could’ve gone without taking another crack at the chola look.

    1. I’m a fan of that look haha. It’s very 4Minute swag-hard and it’s adorable.

  6. The chorus absolutely goes but thats about the only part of the song that isn’t bland and standard as fff.
    Also Jiyoon in that 2nd verse, what did they do to the poor girl, she looks so ugly with that makeup.

    1. I dunno, she kinda has that Matrix-lite look going for her there.

      Agreed on the chorus going incredibly hard. The more I listen to it, the more I like it and wish it was it’s own track. The chorus riff that plays through the second and third verses makes me think that it very well could have been.

  7. Ha, ha “chola”, I learned a new word today (pardon me, I’m Asian). I think they all look great; Ji-Hyun’s blonde locks, Sohyun’s hot pants, Jiyoon’s eye makeup, Hyuna’s pigtails!
    I’m beginning to enjoy the song more and the build up to the drop is pretty darn amazing. The drop–jarring as it is—is actually quite catchy but is a little repetitive and reminds me too much of ‘Crazy’. I think Jiyoon summarised ‘Hate’ best in an interview:
    “Our parents were the first to hear it, and they found it a bit difficult,” said Jiyoon.
    “They said it was better after watching the music video and the choreography. We hope our fans will see it together with the performance as well.”
    Here’s a guerilla performance they did at Yeongdeungpo Times Square, Seoul.

  8. Its all very odd together. Still after listening second time round its listenable.

    1. Agreed. I’m loving both parts but still find the whole thing a little jarring.

      1. I can’t say I like it or its good or anything, but I keep listening despite not really wanting too. Confusion.

  9. Here’s a great remix of ‘Hate’ with ‘more Skrillex’ and a more consistent dubstep throughout (aka noisier-remix version for you older listeners). The rearrangement, and the ending in particular, is pretty slick.

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