As with so many under-the-radar K-pop debuts, 3YE failed to make much of an impression when they dropped their first single this May. In fact, I had to search back to see if I had reviewed the song at all — that’s how little I remember it. On the plus side, the group seems to have a particular style in mind. It’s not a unique or revolutionary style, but they deserve some praise for their commitment. New single OOMM (Out Of My Mind) picks up more-or-less where DMT (Do Ma Thing) left off, down to its stylized title. I guess the girls also enjoy a good acronym.
OOMM is not greater than the sum of its parts, but some of those parts are quite good. Most of the track is your standard, post-BLACKPINK stab at musical toughness. At its worst, OOMM rests on style over substance. Like their debut, 3YE resort to a lazy, unmemorable beat drop hook with the song’s title thrown over the top as a catchphrase. The verses aren’t much better, coming across as the kind of bad girl hip-hop that has been tackled by many more notable K-pop groups.
Yet, buried within all of these derivative choices, OOMM presents a hypnotic, instantly engaging pre-chorus that points toward the direction the song should have taken. Perched at a compelling whisper, the girls offer a charismatic, layered bit of rhythmic melody over a thumping electro beat. During this segment, all of the track’s noise falls away and we get a sense of brilliant focus. It’s by far OOMM’s most interesting turn, and helps to make 3YE stand out — if only for a moment. If they can extend this style to an entire track, they may just find their niche within this cutthroat industry.
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