The band The Rose are finally back with their new single “Baby.” The Rose debuted in August 2017 with an emotional rock ballad. Their last comeback was all the way back in October of 2017, the slower rock ballad titled “Like We Used To.” “Baby” builds off the band’s previous songs. The song combines elements of electronic music, alt-rock, and ballads all in one to create a hard-hitting angst fest.
It’s hard to say exactly how much they’ve grown since debut, but “Baby” is definitely their best single to date. The song starts with a calm piano melody with Woo-sung’s unique voice. As Woo-sung’s angst becomes more apparent in his voice, the drums and bass come in and start building the tension. Once the guitars join, you get a better sense of the yearning that they’re conveying in this song.
Everything from the driving drums, steady bassline, and syncopated keyboard each add a different sense of angst and longing. Both Woo-sung and Do-joon know how to use their voices to show the max amount of emotion. Their vocals are front and center in all of The Rose’s songs, but in “Baby” their voices really pop. When you combine that skill with their instrumentals, you get a song that really punches you in the gut with the longing they feel.
The lyrics for “Baby” express the frustration and sadness that comes with realizing that your lover’s feelings have faded. One of the recurring lyrics that Woo-sung and Do-joon sing is “I don’t wanna hold you back.” This lyric is really the core what they’re trying to say; they still love the subject of the lyrics, but can tell their feelings have changed. The emotional climax is during the bridge and final chorus where Woo-sung sings:
Maybe I just have to let you go (no)
As if my heart is falling
Clouds are shrouding us
into the dark yeah
Like my disappearing shadow
They’ve accepted that their relationship is coming to an end and they need to let their lover go. They use weather and the sky as a metaphor for the fading love between them throughout the song. I personally enjoy that and think it fits the sadness and angst they’re talking about.
What I like best about “Baby” is how clear each instrument is in the mixing. Each instrument can easily be parsed within the song, but when layered they complement each other. The verses and chorus build a feeling of anxiety and tension all throughout but that tension isn’t resolved until the very end of the song. It builds and builds until the bridge when Woo-sung lets out a defeated sigh and desperately sings, “I’ll leave.” Then a synth brings you up to the peak right as the drums and guitar drop, finally relieving all of the tension and anxiety “Baby” has built up throughout the song.
The music video for “Baby” is definitely their most aesthetically pleasing MV to date. The colors are desaturated whenever The Rose is shown playing. However, whenever it is Woo-sung and the actress running through what appears to be Hong Kong, the color grading makes certain colors pop out and catch your eye. The symmetry and composition in each shot is brilliant, making the viewing experience really enjoyable. Woo-sung running through a city, distraught, gives off a G-Dragon in the “Crooked” MV vibe, which fits well with the overall themes. Just like the song itself, the MV reflects that feeling of yearning and tension as the song goes on. By the end of the video we see Woo-sung running and disappearing, just like the girl in the MV.
The Rose’s “Baby” is everything I hoped it would be. They still bring the rock sound I love while combining it with more electronic and pop elements to create something uniquely theirs. It’s similar to Day6, another band I absolutely adore. I cannot wait to see what they produce next and am very much looking forward to whenever they get around to putting out a full album.