Blackpink’s popularity has undeniably skyrocketed over the years, with the success of songs such as ‘DDU-DU DDU-DU’ and ‘Kill This Love’ leading to them recently being labelled the ‘biggest band in the world’.
Five years after the release of their debut single album ‘Square One’, the band’s members are now revealing their unique talents and personalities through their solo debuts.
With Jennie and Rosé’s solo unveilings complete, the spotlight shifted onto the group’s main dancer and lead rapper, Lisa (real name Lalisa Manobal).
On 10 September, the wait ended as Lisa released her solo album entitled ‘Lalisa’, featuring two hit songs ‘Lalisa’ and ‘Money’.
Throughout her career, Lisa has been known for her powerful dancing skills and killer rap verses.
Lalisa unveils Lisa’s full potential as an artist, yet unfortunately, it falls flat.
The title track is a dynamic hip hop track with a catchy chorus, but it falters with the lyrics.
YG Entertainment – Blackpink’s record label – was seemingly so focused on showcasing Lisa’s charisma and stunning looks with an eye-catching music video that it came at the expense of the song itself.
The whole song seems to be Lisa arrogantly bragging.
‘Being the greatest of all time ain’t fantasy’ and ‘Tell it to the world, kiss my name’ are lyrics like these that make the song dull.
Not to mention the repetition of her name, which is said exactly 40 times in the song.
That is just too much.
If the lyrics to Lalisa are hard to hear, then perhaps those in the B-side Money are even worse.
Like the title suggests, the song is about a repeated and overused concept in the music industry.
Lisa’s personality is exaggerated here, turning fierceness into arrogance with lyrics such as ‘Twerking, twerking when I buy the things I like’.
If we compare Lisa’s album with Rosé’s March 2021 debut ‘R’ – featuring ‘On The Ground’ and ‘Gone’ – Lalisa lacks the emotional connection that Rose grasped.
Lisa’s solo departure has perhaps been the most anticipated in Blackpink.
Even before her solo debut, she has proven many times to be one of the most famous artists in the K-pop industry. With her powerful rap verses and unmatchable dance skills, she naturally stands out.
Her charisma alone is enough to influence Lalisa’s popularity, despite the questionable lyrics.
Her voice gives it a refreshing feeling and makes the choruses infectiously catchy and memorable.
The thing about Blackpink’s solo projects is that it provides each member with the opportunity to polish their talent and shine in their area of expertise.
Rosé’s album was able to show off her golden vocals and unique music taste, whilst Jennie served us elegance in her 2018 release ‘SOLO’.
Lisa’s album allowed her to explore her stylish personality.
Individually, Lalisa is a fierce song, yet the choreography hints at the soft and cute side of Lisa’s personality whilst simultaneously showing her impressive dancing skills.
One significant aspect of the song is in the beat drop.
In the third verse, Lisa infuses Thai music to pay homage to her roots and culture.
Of course, Lisa went a step further in the music video by wearing traditional dress from Thailand and incorporating black and gold colours, which strongly represent Thai’s culture.
‘From Thailand to Korea, and now here, went for the throat’, Lisa also expresses.
It is perhaps the only verse in the song with meaning.
In Blackpink, Lisa continuously received hate for being Thai and being the only non-Korean artist in the group.
As a soloist, Lisa embraced her cultural roots and shuts down haters.
Overall, it is fair to say that Lisa’s presence made the song what it is; a hit.
The song earned 73.6 million views in its first 24 hours, breaking Taylor Swift’s two-year record for most-viewed YouTube music video in 24 hours by a solo artist, and has now reached 250 million views in just four weeks.
Her energy guaranteed the song’s success and will leave a lasting impact on her fans – but that isn’t to say it’s perfect.
By Elena Pre-Kouadio
Feature Image Credit: YG Entertainment