Most popularly known for her confident, high energy tracks, “Bicycle” and “Snapping,” CHUNG HA reveals a vulnerable side with “Killing Me.” Highlighting her writing abilities and dynamic vocals, the chorus details exhaustion caused by the repetitiveness of everyday life. The release follows her debut studio album, Querencia, featuring notable collaborators from Latin-pop breakout star Guannya, dance mainstay R3HAB, Korean rapper CHANGMO, and Korean R&B artist Colde.
Despite consistently displaying self assurance and bright vocals, CHUNG HA confesses her fear of remaining musically stagnant. In an interview with ELLE Magazine she admitted, “The fear of always being the same is greater than the fear of trying something new.” Self reflection and the desire to evolve remains the norm in the industry, but for an artist like CHUNG HA who created a brand revolving around confidence, even a glimpse of self doubt comes as a shock. For an artist like CHUNG HA that comes across as perfect and untouchable, “Killing Me,” provides a different perception by discussing the common human emotion of helplessness and mental exhaustion.
“Killing Me” opens with an upbeat club instrumental that seamlessly transitions to the chorus’s use of synths, audibly depicting the concept of a long tunnel. Full of emotion she sings, “It’s killing me, killing me. Every day feels like a long tunnel / I seem exhausted from the endless darkness.” The long tunnel and endless darkness embody the internal conflict and turmoil that comes with a draining, monotonous life. CHUNG HA’s use of a repetitive “killing me, killing me” throughout the track acts as a memorable and impactful cry begging to be set free.
An emotionally powerful music video accompanies the track to tell CHUNG HA’s story. Beginning the video as a young, innocent child, she receives a Russian doll for her birthday. The doll represents herself as she uncovers and experiences life’s hardships. As she removes the doll’s layers, the room around her begins to shake and crumble. Losing her innocence and pure perception of the world, she cowers in the corner full of fear. The video transitions to display her standing between a narrow hallway with a more mature appearance. Finding the Russian doll yet again, she removes another layer and sets off a similar destructive scene as before, now in her bathroom. Clips of a vibrant birthday party flicker throughout to represent putting on a brave face despite feeling broken. Beaten down, she sits alone in a room thinking back on all the moments up to this point. With the last piece of the broken doll appearing scratched beyond recognition, she realizes her life needs to be decided on her own terms. Gathering together the ounce of confidence and fight that remains, she crushes the doll along with the room that brought her agony. The final scenes show CHUNG HA powerfully sitting in the middle of the crumbled room holding the Russian doll. She no longer looks fearful, but instead exudes conviction and strength.
“Killing Me” offers a raw, relatable vulnerability while ending with a brighter, uplifting note. Sharing her frustration and discontentment with the current state of her life, CHUNG HA shares the importance of recognizing the temporariness of life’s dark moments. While valid to feel helplessness, she wants fans to acknowledge that with every dark path or moment, light stands at the end of the tunnel.
Make sure to stream “Killing Me” on all streaming platforms and check out the music video linked below!