Single Review: 박혜진 Park Hye Jin’s Enchanting Minimalist Dance In ‘Like this’

박혜진 Park Hye Jin |Like this (single) | Ninja Tune

Single Release Date: 19 May, 2020

‘How Can I’ EP Release Date: 26 June, 2020

Park Hye Jin (박혜진 in Korean) is one of the electronic music world’s fastest rising stars, causing tidal waves in the industry in an impressively short space of time. After earning critical acclaim for her debut EP ‘IF U WANT IT’ in 2018 – the 26 year old multitalented Seoul-born, LA based DJ, producer, vocalist and rapper found herself in the spotlight as her work was immediately recognised by major publications – including Dazed, FADER, Boiler Room, Pitchfork and more – along with a string of extremely successful and distinguished performances while touring the globe.

Aside from shows at leading clubs such as Berlin’s notorious Panorama Bar, along with spots at illustrious festivals such as Dour, Melt, Lost Village (the list could go on) and a personal invite to play alongside Jamie xx in 2019 – her upcoming EP ‘How Can I’ is a highly anticipated release from the talented artist which will be out on June 26th. If the first single ‘Like this‘ is anything to go by, we are in for a real treat – with her unique, dreamy take on minimal house and techno definitely an experience to look forward to.

A gentle, pastoral aura opens ‘Like this’ as tender, melodious chimes dance delicately over the steady calm of a tranquil, minimalist heartbeat – the simplicity of the introduction shapes a kind ambience that allows for a meditative, trance-like feel; especially as Hye Jin’s graceful, velveteen vocal samples appear as scintillating ghosts, gliding effortlessly in a bewitching repetition. A brief interlude peppered with ambient, electronic textures follows – a moment to take a deep breath before hitting the dancefloor. 

Light, airy rhythmic percussion gradually makes itself known as the tempo of the track begins to increase; Hye Jin’s hypnotic vocals blossoming over an atmosphere of intricate, minimalist house, swelling synthesizers sculpting walls of sound as the track continues to build into a crescendo. Influences of minimal techno radiate vibrantly in the low, pulsing heartbeat in the driven nature of the track – moving in effortless companionship with the upbeat percussion.

The mesmer of Hye Jin’s repeating vocals are spellbinding amongst the fluid ebb and flow of ‘Like this’ – the structure of which is composed so smoothly is a joy to listen to in and of itself, but her clear ability to compose a track that is absolutely dreamlike in her unique minimalist approach – while still absorbing the listener and remaining intriguing in its simplicity truly showcases the artists prowess when it comes to crafting immersive, textural and wonderfully jovial soundscapes ready for the club. 

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Rating: 8 / 10

Feature Image: 박혜진 Park Hye Jin by Sirui Ma