Knee Jerk Reaction: “Ping Pong” by HyunA and DAWN

HyunA & DAWN, aka K-pop’s resident power couple, have finally blessed us with a whole mini-album of songs as a duo. We all know they have a TON of chemistry, so it’s kind of thrilling to see that all come together both in music and onstage. (Well, I guess we’ve seen it before when they were in Triple H… but this time Hui’s not third-wheeling ^^”’) I’ve been waiting for them to do an officially promoted collaboration since they both joined P Nation, and I was definitely not disappointed.

I’ve been following both HyunA and DAWN’s careers for a while – since they were still at Cube Entertainment, actually – and “Ping Pong” is pretty much exactly the kind of release I was expecting from them. Heavily influenced by moombahton, it’s most definitely a club jam at heart. You all know I love my dance music, and this one just makes me want to get up and move. So, it’s a guaranteed thumbs up from me. I also think “Ping Pong” is a great match for HyunA, since its brassy and sassy sound fits right in with her discography. And DAWN is a pretty versatile artists, so it suits him well too.

The duo are nothing but charismatic and confident in this single (as they always are), and that boldness is dialed up to 100 in the wildly decadent music video. I’m pretty sure it has every color you can possibly think of, and in its absolute brightest shade to boot. The stars of the single even get in on the action by sporting dyed hair, with HyunA favoring electric blue and light purple and DAWN rocking neon green. The outfits are also absolutely outrageous, matching the couple’s adventurous fashion taste that we’ve seen in countless photoshoots and Instagram posts. Everything about the aesthetics is 100% their style, and the way they own it is downright inspiring. I’m convinced that only the two of them could pull off such daring looks.

Per usual, I’m most drawn to the choreography. It’s got some eye-catching moves, and I like how it’s a little provocative for your average K-pop dance. And while this might be a controversial opinion, my favorite aspect of the performance is that it doesn’t always focus on HyunA and DAWN as a couple. (The music video to an extent, as well.) Don’t get me wrong – I think it’s amazing they’re helping normalize dating in K-pop. However, I often get the impression that some people just see them as “the idol couple” and don’t pay attention to their *actual* careers as singers and performers. Which is a shame, because they’re both so much more than their relationship. So, it’s great that the choreography strikes a nice balance between letting each of them do their own thing and bringing them together for those short steamy moments.


(NOTE: My options for each category are “Love,” “Like,” “Neutral,” “Not My Style,” or “Dislike.” But I rarely dislike anything, so I’ll mostly be using the other four.)

CategoryMy Opinion
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HyunA and DAWN have always seemed unbothered about what people think of them and their relationship – especially since they moved to P Nation – and it’s so refreshing to see evidence of that all over “Ping Pong.” Like I said earlier, I really wish their careers and images weren’t so closely tied to their couple status… but it’s wonderful that they’re even able to drop music and perform together on music show broadcasts. That was practically unheard of when I first became a K-pop fan, so progress is definitely happening bit by bit. Aside from all that, “Ping Pong” is a bonafide bop that would get any party going. It checks all of my boxes for a good release, so I am currently a very happy camper. I enjoy both HyunA and DAWN as solo artists, but I certainly wouldn’t mind seeing them team up together more often.

(“Knee Jerk Reaction” is a column I created to talk about comebacks or debuts when I don’t have a lot of time to write in-depth reviews. A knee jerk reaction is like an automatic response, so it’s a post about my initial thoughts on the song, the music video, and the performance if it’s available. Compared to my reviews, everything is more stream of consciousness and less analytical. And everything is 100% my own opinion!)

SOURCES: Music video belongs to P Nation. Featured image is of HyunA and DAWN at Inkigayo and can be found on the show’s Twitter account – original tweet here.

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