Girl group S.I.S have released two singles so far, and I had a drastically different reaction to each. The bright, throwback pop of debut I’ve Got A Feeling provided a welcome shot of catchy melody, but follow-up Say Yes was too cloying for me. New single Always Be Your Girl (너의 소녀가 되어줄게) falls somewhere in the middle, rekindling the upbeat dance sound of 2016-era girl groups without bringing anything new to the table.
Like NeonPunch’s underrated Tic Toc earlier this year, Always Be Your Girl was composed by production team TENTEN. I’ve had my eyes on these creators for awhile now. They seem to be modeling their sound after the excellent Iggy/Youngbae duo, but have yet to find that distinct flavor that would make their work stand out. Maybe that’s why Girl feels a bit redundant. It’s a good kind of redundant, but redundant just the same.
We’ve heard the instrumental’s chirpy synths and clobbering dance beats before, but they’re never unwelcome. Girl is light on its feet, harnessing the group’s bright vocals as part of its upbeat brew. I love the dominant synths during the chorus, and the resounding percussion that underlines the pre-chorus. I just wish the song’s melodies hit a little harder. All of the right ingredients are here, but they lack an exciting recipe to follow. It’s no surprise, then, that Girl’s most magnetic moment comes during its wordless bridge, where the synth amps up for an addictive solo. TENTEN (and S.I.S) will get there eventually. For now, Always Be Your Girl feels like another tentative step in the right direction.