"Sweet and bitter tastes cross in my mouth, while Heaven and Hell meet in their existence," read the lyrics of Break Down. Dramatic, maybe but this line pretty much sums up what this song is all about.
Ever since Super Junior scored a big hit with Sorry Sorry, its music has mostly been represented by electronic sounds and auto tune, shown through such follow up singles like Bonamana, Mr. Simple and Sexy, Free & Single. As ′digital′ as Super Junior’s music may seem, however, it’s nothing compared to what sub group Super Junior-M has to show.
Super Junior-M first landed in China with the single U, a rearrangement that contained a heavier electronic kick compared to the original Super Junior released in Korea. The unit group’s music has lingered at the extremes of the electronic genre since then, as heard through such tracks as Too Perfect and Super Girl.
Break Down marks a continuation of the trend, incorporating a wide variety of electronic sounds to maintain a unique tension between the soaring highs and the grinding lows.
The vocals in the verses are backed up by a repetitive synthesizer melody that eases you into the song, which slowly builds up and bursts into a dizzying array of electronic sounds in the chorus.
It is the bridge that stands out in the midst of this, however, as it takes the same sounds used in the chorus to form a section that sounds completely different. It takes the highest part of the chorus, the auto tuned bursts of ′down,′ and the lowest part of the chorus, a grinding bass, alternating these two elements to bring about a tension that makes it feel as if the song is delving deep into hell only to come flying up to heaven in a mere instant. While many songs are often called rollercoaster rides, this song is better described as a slingshot with its tense pulls and releases.
Despite using many sounds and contrasting moods, the song is also surprisingly well-organized as a whole, a characteristic which makes it a fun listen that miraculously isn’t all over the place.
Even if you′re not so keen on songs laden with electronic sounds, this thrilling song will definitely have you on the edge of your seat, pushing you down and pulling you up all at once.