Despite a rocky start, girl group Momoland knocked it out of the park with last spring’s surprisingly anthemic Wonderful Love. That song’s EDM remix even became a brief meme thanks to member Jooe’s over-excited performance during the dance breakdown. You’d think the group’s agency would be eager to quickly capitalize on that notoriety with a comeback in the same vein and genre. Instead, they’ve opted for the strange Freeze (꼼짝마), whose structure seems better suited for a themed stage performance than an actual song.
Unfortunately, Freeze pulls Momoland back to expendable territory, offering little in the way of addictive melody or appealing energy. The song kicks off with a sample of the classic circus theme we’ve all heard countless times as kids. It slaps a juvenile connotation on the track from the very first moments, casting everything that follows in a big shadow called “novelty.” Novelty songs aren’t inherently bad, but they need to be driven by one hell of a bubblegum hook. Freeze just isn’t all that catchy. It hits you with all the bells and whistles, but its constant supply of sounds never form into one memorable sucker-punch.
If Momoland is going to be positioned as this sort of quirky, themed group, they need to double down on Wonderful Love‘s ridiculously catchy chorus and build out from there. Freeze feels as if it were constructed by a team of k-pop scientists with all the successful ingredients but not the right recipe to bring them together. We know the girls have the energy and potential star power to deliver a dynamite track, but this is their weakest single to date.