Poor A.cian. Despite existing in one form or another since 2012, they’ve just never been able to break out amongst all their boy group peers. They’ve had fine songs in the past, but each seemed content to follow trends set by bigger acts rather than provide anything unique or characteristically “A.cian.” This trend continues with Touch, but at least this time around the guys aped the upbeat pop style of some of my favorite groups.
Touch is basically B1A4 meets Seventeen, though not nearly to the level of either of those bands. Its playful synths and power pop guitars are a pale imitation of B1A4’s epic What’s Happening, but that track was such an incredible piece of pop that even a knock-off ends up being pretty charming. Touch‘s seesaw chorus is particularly effective, subverting expectations set by the surging verses and giving us a real earworm hook. I also love the “hey!” chants sprinkled throughout the track, and even the persistent, high-pitched electronic wiggle manages to keep just short of total annoyance.
Still, for all the production’s strengths, it does feel like it needs an extra shot of adrenaline to truly soar. The first time I heard the song, it seemed as if the tempo needed to be kicked up a notch. Upon further listens, I’m not sure that’s actually the case. There’s definitely energy to the track, but it never really explodes in the way a song of this style needs to. Maybe it’s the actual structure, which doesn’t allow much excitement to build before transitioning to the next segment. Even so, I think this is my favorite A.cian song yet (but only because it recalls better singles from more accomplished artists).