Kim Hyun Sik kept producing melancholic, emotion drenched songs throughout the 80s, spanning from pop ballads to rock and blues. While maturing musically on one hand his health was waning owing to the vices of his life style. His sixth LP album turned out to be his last of original songs,released a few months after his death in November, 1990. The best remembered song of his entire career is probably My Love By My Side (내 사랑 내 곁에) on this album, but it also featured other fantastic songs such as these too. They show uncanny abilities of a seasoned musician at the height of his trade, showing great vocal prowess and near perfect interpretation abilities.
Making Memories (추억 만들기), written by Kim himself for both music and lyrics, is typical of his songs, relating the sadness in his heart emotionally while looking back at a loved one in his life. The song laments the fact that she had to leave him while at the same time confessing that his own attachment to her is slowly subsiding, as would be unavoidable for anyone in the face of the all powerful time. He declares she would live in his heart as the only one whom he bared his soul to even as he gets old and gray. But alas, he wasn’t to live to see his hair turn gray. The melancholic melody is sad and sweet at the same time, and his vocals carry the same thick, bittersweet sentiment.
In Wintry Sea (겨울바다), he looks on himself set against the lonely, expansive wintry sea. He goes out to the shore alone, where he encounters no one but a couple of birds and scattered footsteps. The whitish sun looks tearful, and the yellow moon is looking down on him like it was himself, while he broods amid the thoughts that weigh on his mind. And the waves pound and splash by him indifferently.
Written by the renowned guitarist Choi Yi Chul (최이철), in a jazz blues style, it is a charming masterpiece with its tight, poetic lyrics and melody, pensive mood and the highly refined arrangements taking advantage of maestro jazz-blues guitar work by Choi himself. Kim’s vocals really shine too on this slick number, masterfully coming in and out of the fore, loading the sinewy notes with textured emotion, and mixing in canny ad-lib of interjecting ohs, ahs, and yeys at just the right places with the right measure. Kim really must be the master of all when it comes to such coloring and perfecting of songs - it elevates the songs a whole notch up.
Loss of Kim Hyun Sik was such an unfortunate turn of event given the staggering potential that his talents had. These two songs truly showcase his musicianship, with burgeoning songwriting abilities in addition to his peerless vocal prowess.