KISS OF LIFE prove they have the ‘Midas Touch’ on this confident, yet authentic single

KISS OF LIFE prove they have the ‘Midas Touch’ on this confident, yet authentic single

‘Midas Touch’ seems like an apt descriptor for KISS OF LIFE. Having spent the past year cementing their foundation with one strong release after another, it’s clear that the girl group are slated for greater things. Fresh off their Rookie of the Year win at this year’s Korean Music Awards, the quartet have put a more nuanced spin on an age-old love story – all is not what it seems in a seemingly perfect romance.

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Drawing on early-aughts pop and R&B, ‘Midas Touch’ focuses on the swooping thrill of an early love, where a shiny sparkly toy takes up all the attention. But when you flip to the B-side, ‘Nothing’ exposes how this hollow love had been “nothing but a mindset”. It’s beautiful how KISS OF LIFE connect the two songs not just thematically, but also visually – after all, the group’s music videos have come to be a core part of their artistry.

It’s easy to spot the fallacies of attraction that they sing about on ‘Nothing’ in the music video for ‘Midas Touch’, as said touch itself is not turning people to gold, but to stone – the line from Midas to Medusa is evidently short and full of deceptions. The poison comes veiled in beauty, as is evident from the bejewelled spider webs, gem-encrusted pervasive eyes and stone busts being served up to enchanting sirens ruling the seas.

The group complement this with a definitively nostalgic pop style reminiscent of Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera circa late-’90s and early-2000s. Raspy, coy intonations layer smoothly over synthesisers and harmonies to deliver a mature, polished sound. On the surface ‘Midas Touch’ follows the industry’s move towards shorter songs, clocking in at just under three minutes, though it certainly doesn’t feel that way thanks to a standout bridge and a brief, but welcome outro.

On ‘Nothing’, the group adopt a mellower approach as they mull over the futility of putting effort into someone who clearly does not reciprocate their feelings. The sounds of Toni Braxton and Kelly Price come to mind as the group refuse to cower down and play therapist for love: “Can’t get with folks who need me / ’Cause what they need is healing”. The regret of losing love colours the song, but self-respect and power simmers underneath.

Whether it’s infusing novelty through their visuals, showcasing their vocals or even referencing their own solos in the bridge for ‘Midas Touch’, KISS OF LIFE emerges as an act who are keenly aware of their own vision and direction. Instead of shying away from their inspirations, the quartet are not afraid to add their own ‘Midas Touch’ to a well-worn sounds – and it’s sure to take them far.

The post KISS OF LIFE prove they have the ‘Midas Touch’ on this confident, yet authentic single appeared first on NME.

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