I’m back with the second episode (issue, edition – however you call that) of my newest addition to blog content – B-sides Treasures – where I choose a non-title track I think deserves more appreciation and talk about why this song specifically needs to be noticed by both fans and non-fans. This week’s featured song is a pretty much old song in EXID‘s discography, Better Together, from their first EP Hippity Hop.
EXID – Better Together
Album: Hippity Hop
Year of release: 2012
Lyrics: LE, WonTaek, Ji In
Composer: WonTaek, Ji In
Arranger: Shinsadong Tiger
Lyrics: Better Together
EXID‘s earlier works are extremely underrated, especially everything coming from Hippity Hop extended play, and Better Together is no exception. It’s a mid-tempo pop-ballad song that has a lot of, I’d say, intimate feeling conveyed by members vocals and the lyrics, which are about the couple constantly bickering, but the protagonist admits that they can’t be without each other, and it just turns into a loop.
What I specifically like about Better Together is how the song highlights Hani’s vocals. Hani is my current EXID bias, and I really like her vocal range, and I do admit that in many songs she doesn’t showcase her full potential due to the song style, but that’s exactly why B-sides exist. I love the overall R&B vibes of the song, but overall vocals here are the main reason why this song is one of my most favorites from EXID. Yes, Junghwa is barely present in the song, but at that timing, the reason is understandable: she was the least stable vocalist compared to trio Solji – Hyelin – Hani, and this song particularly required a stronger singer than her. If you check the line distribution, it’s actually more like a Dasoni unit + LE: Hyelin also gets little lines. Instead of strongly complaining about “unfairness”, I’d rather think of what effect the given line distribution creates for the song, and I find that it sounds perfectly as it is.
Recently EXID released the re-mastered version of this song under their Re: flower project, and at this point I still haven’t figured out the difference between the sounds (I need a video of having them side by side in two headphones to figure out), but I was actually hoping they’d remake the whole song and re-distribute the lines, because Junghwa (and Hyelin also, seeing how regularly she has to take up Solji’s lines during her hiatus) definitely improved over time, and she could’ve taken some lines from Hani (and Hyelin from Solji).
I guess the reason why this song is so underrated was, of course, poor promotion from Banana Culture, but I also think the timing wasn’t good. Better Together is actually a title track material, and I wish it was a double title track along with I Feel Good (which is also underrated as hell). It would totally chart better these days because it fits with general public taste, and is a perfect coffee shop kind of song that has a high potential of receiving interest from random people.
Listen to both original and remastered versions here:
What do you think of Better Together by EXID? Does it deserve more recognition or not really? Do you think it would chart better if it was released this year as a title track?