MuuMuse Approved, New Music

Hello Bitches: The Reintroduction of CL

CL - Hello Bitches

A Living Legend once famously introduced herself after stepping away from the pop scene for a hot minute with an instantly iconic utterance of “It’s Britney, bitch.Adele dusted off her flip phone, grabbed her coat and gave us a ring after a few years with a simple, staggeringly effective “Hello.” And now, CL has something of her own to say to both an endlessly loyal fanbase at home and a whole new world abroad: “Hello, bitches.

For those who haven’t been formally introduced: Leave (get out).

No! Actually don’t. Sorry. CL is one-fourth of 2NE1, inarguably one of K-Pop’s best, most baddest female troupes. (Even if you think you know none of their music, you still might know “I Am The Best.”)

I’ve written about her show-stopping solo performances in South Korea, her upcoming Scooter Braun-helmed English debut, her ferocious features with Diplo and Skrillex and her rise to style icon status within the fashion scene as Jeremy Scott‘s (muu)muse over the past few years.

Because her stateside debut has been endlessly delayed ever since being announced (they’re aiming for 2016 now), CL’s gone and done us a solid by supplying a “street single freebie” (hey, it’s better than “buzz single”!) available for free download, beginning today.

“I feel blessed to have good people who support and trust me. This is just the tip of the iceberg. I wanted to do something for the fans and I love how this music video came out. I wanted to share it just for people to enjoy so it’s free music…it’s a gift to my fans,” she says.

And yes, this ought to tide ’em over.

“Hello Bitches” is just the kind of soft — except actually very, very hard — landing that CL needed before her official North American solo debut in 2016: It’s a powerful, playful, entirely fierce hybrid of brag-filled English verses, mindlessly catchy Korean hooks and noisy trap hip-pop beats, entirely indicative of who CL is right now. (Not a Korean girl, not yet an American woman, if you will.)

The cut was crafted by YG’s Teddy and Jean-Baptiste (KelisFlesh Tone, among many other important contributions) and co-penned by the two producers, CL and Danny Chung.

But it’s the absolutely killer performance video that seals the deal: With the help of choreographer Paris Goebbel and New Zealand’s ReQuest Dance Crew (all of whom are on a hot streak right now after being featured in Justin Bieber‘s “Sorry” video), CL and her gang of bold, bad bitches serve up hair-flipping, hip-thrusting attitude in a way that feels not unlike the awesome assertiveness and fire of Beyoncé‘s “Flawless.” (And they shot it within six hours, according to CL.)

But even with half a dozen femme fatales bending and snapping around her, CL is undeniably the star — she’s endlessly entertaining to watch. And considering she’s bouncing in between two different languages, her boundless confidence feels all the more impressive.

And while we’ve already heard CL spit in English on Skrillex’s “Dirty Vibe” and Diplo’s “Doctor Pepper,” it’s the sung bridge (“Lights out, killin’ it some more / Bad bitches, get down on the floor“) — which soundtracks the video’s most pearl-clutching, red light special moment as CL winds and grinds against the floor (challenge my sexuality a BIT) — gives us a taste of her versatility as a solo singing-rapping-dancing pop queen in the making.

cl-thrust

CL has the look, the talent, the versatility — the whole package. She’s IT. The G.O.A.T. The GIZIBE. (More like GiziBAE, really.)

#HELLOBITCHES

A photo posted by CL (@chaelincl) on

OUR MESSIAH HAS ARRIVED — AND SHE’S A BAD BITCH.

If my belief in her seems overly enthusiastic, it’s because she needs every ounce of support: The hurdle for an Asian female superstar to make it big in America is set at an all-but-impossible height. Despite small, yet important victories on the charts in the past few years (many of which were pulled off by 2NE1, for the record), even the world’s biggest, arena-filling superstars, including BoA and Utada Hikaru, have failed to inspire even the slightest mainstream success in North America.

She is, without question, K-Pop’s greatest hope for a crossover superstar stateside — and one that isn’t riding in on a novelty dance. (Sorry, Psy.)

Hana, dul, ses…bitches.

Hello Bitches