Song Review: Weki Meki – Tiki-Taka (99%)

K-pop’s summer is starting late this year, as idol groups are finally remembering that it’s time for those high-energy blasts of sunny pop music. Oh My Girl offered their bid last week, but Weki Meki have done them one better with Tiki-Taka (99%). This is easily the best girl group summer track since Cosmic Girls got the season started way back at the start of June.

Thus far in their career, Weki Meki have built their sound on a “teen crush” concept that often played around with style and structure. Tiki-Taka is their most straightforward single yet, but it’s all the stronger for it. There’s a laser-beam focus here, centered around a big, pulsing pop hook. The song’s instrumental borrows heavily from tropical elements, but tethers them to a high-tempo beat that pulls as much from disco and synthpop as it does from today’s trends. Its verses are largely disposable, but get the job done without unnecessary aegyo thrown over the top.

The real story with Tiki-Taka is its chorus, which offers a robust, two-part hook underlined by propulsive production. The vocal layering works well here, and recalls second generation groups like Kara. I love the contrast between the main chorus and the rhythmic, post-chorus hook that follows. You’ve got this sweeping, anthemic refrain that acts as the song’s centerpiece, but instead of capping it off with an instrumental drop or trap breakdown, Tiki-Taka delivers a sticky vocal riff that chews on the song’s tongue-twister of a title. This is the kind of full-fledged song-craft that I like to hear in K-pop. Time will tell if this track will be able to hang with the industry’s summer classics of years past, but it’s undoubtedly Weki Meki’s strongest work yet.

 Hooks 9
 Production 9
 Longevity 9
 Bias 9

Be sure to add your own rating by participating in the poll below!



17 thoughts on “Song Review: Weki Meki – Tiki-Taka (99%)

  1. If this song had a slightly stronger chugging obligato bass line, it could be kpop meets Stock Aitken Waterman, especially the chorus. The chorus is very close to the classic SAW sound. That’s a high complement.
    A very nice summery song which somehow manages to minimize or eliminate all the tropes we have come to loathe. There is the barest hint of that bamboo synth sound that pops up, but not very loudly.


  2. I’ve loved this since I first heard it and I wish the group was more popular so they could snag a win with it. It’s nice to just have a fun, breezy song that is actually interesting as well and I just hope it does good things for them/their careers.


  3. Holy Crap! This is, without a doubt, their best offering thus far; for me, at least. Maybe this is exactly what Weki Meki should’ve been doing from the start. This may be the groups saving grace; an anti-concept approach. Forget concepts. No Girl Crush. No Sweg. No nothing. Drop all of the genre-specific iconography and just release a fun POP music song. There. I said it. I know, right?


  4. I’ve basically ignored Weki Meki up to this point but it’s nice to hear just, like… a good girl group song again? Not “good but not as good as…” or “good compared to…” or “good but disposable” or “good but…” It’s just a straight up good song, I haven’t heard too many Kpop songs this year that give me that reaction.

    The “tell me what you want what you really really want” was a nice little shoutout to the Spice Girls too, sometimes invoking the gods pays off.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. This is what K-pop needs right now. Kinda brings me back to the early-mid 2010s summer releases from girl groups. Just a fun pop song to brighten up the day. I don’t feel like giving this a perfect 10. Just the fact that I’ve heard this obvious style from other girl groups in the past keeps it from being a 10. Maybe if the production was a bit more chugging, then I would’ve given a rating around that.

    However, it’s addicting and fun, I love to rate this as a strong 9. Wouldn’t mind a 9.5. This is something k-pop can excel at when it focuses naturally on the whole production of the song.


  6. To some people this song “ticks all the boxes”, but to me this song sounds like a sound collage of bits and pieces of countless earlier kpop hits. Almost as if an AI algorithm has been developed to generate kpop by learning from earlier hits. It’s not bad, and it’s a pleasantly unexpected return of an older style, but I’ll pass.

    Liked by 1 person

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