Henry: Oh! Umu: So, now you'll be reacting to the two songs from the late Jonghyun's posthumous album titled 'Poet | Artist'. The album is littered with tender moments and messages the artist directed towards his fans, like the lyrics "I'll always be with you", which is from the chorus of the first song that you guys will be reacting to, called 'Shinin''. And the lyrics are the hardest element of 'Shinin'' to note down, because they're the hardest to look at without the weight of hindsight. It's easy to take them at face value, a particularly earnest love song. But when considering the symbolism of the music video, there's a recurring feeling of 'Shinin' 'being about music as well The song is composed by Jonghyun, Score, and Megaton, and the lyrics are by Jonghyun. Lindsey: All right, three, two, one. Fiona: I like how it swims around in my ears. mm! Henry: Oh! Elizabeth: Every time. Henry: Yeah. Rachel: Yeah, he's got like a really natural vibrato.
Rachel: It's hard to tell cuz a lot of it goes by quickly, but for those few sustained… Kevin: Whoa, okay. Collin: He's really interesting. He's like such a convincing performer. Holy sh*t! Fiona: That like (singing) up in falsetto–so seamless. Kevin: I love how he uses these syncopations–that "a cha, a cha", but it doesn't sound repetitive. It's just enough where it's not overbearing. Lot of open fifths (singing). I don't know what it means, but it's there. Fiona: This is like it gradually becomes more and more dancy.
Fiona: But it's like a feel-good kinda dance. Rachel: He's like doin' some switch it up stuff. Hugo: Yeah, I like it that he's going into his head voice falsetto.
Hugo: But then also using his chest voice. James: Wow. His transitions… Melissa: Hmm? James: His transitions are flawless.
Melissa: Yeah. Elizabeth: It's so interesting because I don't know if it's like a left ear right ear thing, but there's interplay, sort of antiphonal, between the the swells – synth swells – the like (mimicking synth). It seems to come from two different sides, and then interlock a little bit.
Henry: Yeah. Fona: His voice is so like…the edges are so… Lindsey: Rounded?
Lindsey: Yeah. Lindsey: I definitely agree. Collin: Wow. I never associate pop music with earnestness, but that was like, first of all, incredibly convincing, because it was just like genuine the whole time, like, wow. And I mean with that imagery and that sort of thing and almost like, my immediate reaction is that it's contradictory. But yeah, that's something incredibly unique that he did. It wasn't pop music. That was so strange Jarod: Right, cuz it's like…
Collin: I'm like, what is that?
Jarod: Looking at the colors of the visuals, like everything was very vibrant, but at the same time relaxing, you know? I don't know. It's just, I don't know, it was very, very well put together. Hugo: I mean, I think that Jonghyun is one of the best at really knowing how to use the language rhythmically and harmonically He does a really good job of just kind of making the vocal line and the specific words that he uses fit in to the song and actually be a part of the melodic and rhythmic line, which is really cool.
Rachel: And I feel like he's really comfortable with his voice, Hugo: Yeah.
Rachel: like he never seemed like he tried to do anything that he wasn't capable of. Hugo: Well, maybe cuz he's writing for his voice, too.
Rachel: Oh, yeah. Hugo: Like he really knows what he's good at and what he's capable for and he's writing it that way,
Rachel: He has a pretty neutral register, too, but still impressive, because he just naturally has an interesting voice.
Hugo: Um-hmm. Kevin: I like how perfect fifths are like this motif going on in the song,
Kevin: and not only…. it's most obvious in the chorus: da-da-da-da– that's a perfect fifth. And then when it goes up: da-da-da-da–that's another perfect fifth. But in the verses, there are also little perfect fifths going on. But yeah, other than that, one thing I really do like is when he goes higher: the da-da-da-you-you-you. They don't auto-tune the first one.They go, "Always be with you, you, you, you", and that little slide actually sounds very tasty to me. I like really like that. Umu: Okay, so now you'll be listening to the closing track of the album, called 'Before Our Spring'. The lyrics reflect Jonghyun's struggle with seasonal affective disorder, and tell a story of longing to get through winter and to make it to springtime. The lyrics are about Jonghyun, and the song is composed by Jonghyun and a songwriter called WeFreaky. In the lyrics, Jonghyun talks about a cold winter and the troubles he's going through, before telling the listener not to worry about him, and that his metaphorical spring will be coming soon. James: Aww.
Umu: However, he ended up committing suicide during winter time, towards the end of December. Our reactions to these songs will be posted on his birthday in remembrance of his artistry and musicality.
James: Wow. Melissa: That's like…man, the end of December is the worst time. That sucks.
Umu: Are you doin' okay? Melissa: Yeah, well, it's January, now…
Umu: Yeah. Melissa: But holy sh*t! Fiona: He's so real.
Lindsey: Yeah. Lindsey: These are all videos of him, yes? Okay. Isaac: Oh! James: It's beautiful piano. Fiona: So the piano's on one, or like, three, one. That's nice. It's just very like, circular. Lindsey: Yeah. Henry: Is this him playing piano? It's really good. Elizabeth: Ooh, there's so much dissonance in the big piano chords. Henry: Interesting voicing. Rachel: This sits much higher, and he's still killin' it.
Hugo: Um-hmm. Rachel: Very vulnerable. He's got such an excellent, excellent low falsetto and high head voice.
Rachel: Yeah. Henry: Applied chord, to the augmented sixth, to five, to one. Rachel: That's so pretty Rachel: And like very singable, but also not like a cookie cutter.
Hugo: Um-hmm. Fiona: There's just so much soul and beauty in his voice. Like imagine singing this, like how it would feel. Hugo: I like how he almost breaks into chest voice.
Hugo: Like he pushed his falsetto to the point of almost being in chest voice. He's really effective. It sounds like…yeah, like vulnerable. I like that he's staying in it. Hugo: Um-hmm. Rachel: Those concerts are like, high scale. Hugo: Yeah, those concerts look nuts.
Rachel: That's intense. Rachel: Oh, my God. Fiona: It's so tender. Rachel: When what? Yeah.
Rachel: He's a really good lyric writer, too.
Hugo: Um-hmm. Rachel: Yeah. James: Jesus Christ. Well, all I can say from listening to that was he is a fabulous singer. Fabulous. Fabulous, in almost every technical and musical sense of the term. And… Melissa: You have to leave this out of your picture on video, okay?
Umu: Oh, no! James: So, what I was saying was he clearly has a gift, like especially musically, he's a phenomenal singer. Like high, wilty, vulnerable head voice–check. Very important for those like tender kind of introspective moments, when you really want people to feel like you're talking to them. Like, perfect. And just in general, his tone – chest voice and head voice – was just very kind of resonant and warm and inviting, and just beautiful, for every note that he sang. You know, usually people, it changes as registers change, but it was consistent. All of those technical things completely allowed him to express his musical message, his musical goodbye. It was really, really, really, really beautiful. Melissa: Just what I want to say about that is like, really sad music in major gets me every time. James: Yeah.
Melissa: If there is a sad thing with sad words and it's in major, I am bawling my eyes out. James: Yeah.
Melissa: So, I think, cuz just the tension between the feeling of hope, like he kept talking about spring, and like he had so much hope but also like, it was so sad.
James: But the lyrics were sad. James: But it was a beautiful song.
Melissa: And it was in major, and so you could hear the hope, like tonally. But then it's just like, you know how it ends. James: It's kind of that cognitive dissonance in your brain. Your brain's like wait, my eyes are seeing this, but my ears are hearing this, like, what's going on?
James: It's really effective, as a tool. Melissa: That's why sad music in major makes me cry. Elizabeth: Not just like him belting things out, like it's very intimate the way he sings. It's very breathy, It's high in the register, and to have just two instruments really that are the driving force, so it's like inviting the audience to feel closer to him just in the musical choices. Basically, one of the great things about living right now is that things like mental illness are getting a lot of attention in the news, and we're trying to break down the stigma against speaking out and being true about your feelings. So, it's really easy for people to seem happy on the outside and seem like they're doing fine, and to create beautiful music, like spring will come I'll be okay, and that's just not true. So like, never be afraid to reach out and get help if you need it And I think that's definitely something we should take away from his music and his story, is just, it's okay to express yourself, and to talk about things that are hard. And it's important that we as humans do that, because it brings us closer together. Henry: No, it's hard to see things like you know, obviously the spring is the metaphor for getting better and hearing things like I'm honestly afraid to do that, or I don't want to share the winter with you in hopes that I don't give it to you. That's hard to process
Henry: with that metaphoric lens. It makes it hard to process, it also makes it an incredible song. Elizabeth: Yeah.
Henry: It's extremely smart songwriting, not to mention that his voicing was really interesting, his piano playing was superb, his modal mixture was really tasteful. He had nice turnarounds and stuff. But, yeah. Elizabeth: Yeah, I'm glad that we're doing this for his birthday, cuz he was a great singer, great pianist. I mean, the world is less without him. Henry: Yeah, it's a shame that he's gone, but it's also still the world. Elizabeth: Yeah, no, no, no, I mean…
Henry: We're all still here. I mean, and ultimately, I don't I don't want to tack anything on to the song to make it to try to extrapolate things that aren't there, an impression that I got was that his undying wish was that he wanted other people to make it through their winter. And our winter might be mourning the loss of someone who committed suicide or it might just be the fact that we can't get out of bed sometimes. We all have our own little winters that we're gonna get through. But the snow thaws, and the sun comes out, and it gets warmer. It happens. And just because it becomes spring doesn't mean that winter doesn't come back. But it's really important to realize that every single day is another day forward and you never have to do today again. So just keep on goin' Hello everyone, I'm Umu, React to the K channel creator, and I'd like to thank you for watching this video. I really hope you enjoyed or learned something from it. If you'd like to support us or help React to the K grow, you can do so by visiting our Patreon, and help us out by pledging any amount you can. 'Til next time.