k-pop · reviews

EXO’s Kai Returns With Some Peaches And It Slaps

Kai finally returns a year after his solo debut with his second mini album Peaches and title of the same name.

Oh yes… this is the comeback we’ve been waiting for all of November (or all year). At least I have been waiting for this baby for so long. I am a bit sad that it took Kai a year to make a comeback (I blame SM) after Mmmh but the wait was more than worth it. Kai is a force to be reckoned with and his visuals, performance, charismas, and album packaging never disappoint. This boy is going to leave us soon for the war I can feel it in my little toe but before that he treated us to the fantastic Peaches, and just like Una will say I am obsessed with the visuals of the music video especially the hanbok look. Kai is insane for this.

Source: jaennie

Peaches is even more laid back than Mmmh was and that song has absolutely aged like the most perfect wine btw. Peaches is very subtle but Kai really shines as an artist, vocally and visually he is really selling these Peaches to me, like yes sir I’d love some Peaches from you, will they make me dance half as talented as you? This is an r&b sound that is – as Una will also mention – missing from the scene as of right now and Kai suits it so well. He really carries this kind of music and the interesting instrumental of. Peaches is not as strong as Mmmh as a title track but that could easily change in the near future for me – I’ve listened a couple of times already and I keep liking it more and more. The song definitely has a lot of viral hit potential (I mean idols are already getting ready for their covers as we speak) and the vocal performance Kai is giving us is insane. No one like the EXOs I’d say.

The album Peaches is really strong and I can’t really find a song I don’t like. While I really like Vanilla (same as Una), I have to say To Be Honest is also fantastic and I instantly loved this song. Kai is really using his vocals a lot more in his solo work and I am more than happy about it. We have all known he is much more than the rapper and dancer SM wanted him to be reduced to in the first place. I am more than satisfied with this comeback it has been a real joy leading up to it! But then again we are biased EXO-Ls here. In my eyes though Kai can’t do wrong.

Kai gave us one of the absolute best albums of 2020 last time around and considering it was a debut album at that, you can definitely tell the expectations for this comeback were massively high. Amnesia and Mmmh are still some of my most listened to songs of last year and so I was incredibly excited for Kai to finally make a comeback. I think another reason for this excitement is the fact that Kai definitely pursues the r&b sound we are missing in the mainstream music scene right now and I couldn’t wait to find out what he had in the store this time for us. Let’s get into the review of Peaches and the album more deeply

Source: mauloveskpop on Tumblr

Before I get into the review of the song itself, I’d like to say that this is one of the most beautiful and aesthetically pleasing music videos of 2021. I knew that Kai would deliver something stunning from the teasers but this exceeded my expectations by a mile. The variety of gorgeous sets and outfits paired with the overall atmosphere of Peaches really brings something unique and alluring to the table as expected from Kai. His charm continues to carry both the song and the visual representation of it and even if I didn’t like the song, I definitely would’ve gone back to watch the music video a few more times. These are Kai’s colours – the pinks, the baby blues and the whites especially.

Peaches, the song, is very laid-back which suits Kai and his voice and it’s a solid release. I really like the somewhat hypnotizing instrumental which really made me pay more attention to everything going on in the song. Peaches doesn’t have any bombast moments but it’s well-structured as it follows a similar melody the entire time while still managing to elevate the energy during the choruses, especially the final one. The verses and the chorus seem almost identical, but it is Kai’s vocals which make a difference and join everything together so it flows smoothly. My absolute favourite part of the song has to be that wonderful bridge which then erupts into a more energetic rendition of the already heard chorus. The added adlibs really bring a different flavour to the song and I almost wish there was more of them during the song’s entire run. While I think Mmmh is a stronger and catchier title, Peaches has that sort of alluring aura and melody which will make you go back to it again.

Peaches, the album, is also a solid one. It offers an interesting variety of b-sides and I enjoyed every single one. I don’t think any of the b-sides hits the mark like Amnesia did in his previous album, but I do enjoy Vanilla very, very much. Vanilla plays around with both the melody and the vocals which makes it quite a unique experience for me. I love the vocal alterations used in the song and the at times even traditional-oriented instrumental but my favourite part has to be Kai’s higher register used during the song. He has an incredibly soothing and gentle voice in my opinion, even when he’s using lower register, and Vanilla showcases that well.

All in all, a solid comeback even if it was long overdue. This is definitely something a bit different and I’m glad we could count on Kai to deliver just that.

Header Image Source: SM Entertainment

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4 thoughts on “EXO’s Kai Returns With Some Peaches And It Slaps

  1. I definately agree with Una. Kai’s Peaches is a go back to song, it calls onto you to have a listen, again and again, the aura is different from KAI (开) the album, but this album is a muse, soft, melodic, calm its like he got inspiration from Suho, Baekhyun and D.O’s latest albums, they have this dreamy feel that you just want to be in all the time if not most of the time.

    Liked by 1 person

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