Culture of Pop

Lee Hi’s ‘Seoulite’ – A Blend of Vocal Range & Creative Depth


Image courtesy of Lee Hi’s Breathe music video.

Lee Hi has a skillset few can match, and that skillset is bilingual… Singing both in Korean and English, the gifts of Lee Hi are so outrageously high that one can’t help but dig the flow/rhythm even when you don’t speak the language of the lyrics. (Insert corny the language of music is universal comment here).

For the purposes of this piece, I was able to review that first half of her new LP entitled Seoulite. The second half of the project will be coming out later. This project features five songs –
“World Tour”
“Hold My Hand”
“Fuxxk Wit Us”

What I noticed about Lee Hi while listening to these joints was, well, her insane potential. Still just 19, she should continue growing, but her storytelling and vulnerability aspects of singing are firmly developed. She has the soul of a blues singer, the catchy nature of a pop star, and the vocal range of any classic American killer with their pipes. I’m just now being introduced to Lee Hi, but good lord I am impressed.

Back to the songs specifically – “World Tour” is all about good vibes. The feeling on the audience is light and it’s an easy to listen to type of song. I would suggest Lee Hi shines brighter elsewhere on Seoulite, but there’s enough of a sentiment created here to warrant listening. “Official” is where we start hearing the range/depth of Lee Hi – she kicks off the song almost sounding like a young Alicia Keys, slaying the track with on point lyrics with the vocals to match them. “My heart, my soul, my body” – that’s something we hear sung countless times on “Official,” and it makes sense since Lee Hi is probably using each aspect when in the studio.

“Hold My Hand” is more of a traditional pop song, something we could definitely be hearing on American radio stations. “Let me hold your hand again and again and again” is how it begins, and it doesn’t slow down. Lee Hi switches back and forth between languages like she does throughout this LP, broadening her universal appeal and also creating a bit of mystique when we don’t know what she’s saying. “Hold My Hand” is one with replay value.

The LP rounds out for now with “Fuxxk Wit Us” and “Breathe.”

To anyone who appreciates a true vocal gift, Lee Hi is one to follow. These five songs feel like part of the start to something powerful and long lasting.

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