Those who have followed The Bias List for any amount of time will know what an enormous fan of Woollim Entertainment I am. From Infinite to Lovelyz to Golden Child, I’m usually enamored with what the agency produces. But, I’m really struggling with Rocket Punch. Thus far, their music seems to lack many of the hallmarks I associate with Woollim’s roster: powerful vocals, compelling melodies, timeless sounds. They’re the most trend-focused group the agency has ever debuted, and most of those trends aren’t for me.
February’s Bouncy was a great pop song, slightly marred by its execution. I know these girls are young, and targeting that shouty, youthful sound that seems to be popular this year. I’ll fully admit that I’m not the target audience. But while that song ended up being a highlight despite its worst instincts, I can barely make it through new single Juicy.
It’s astonishing to think that this song was composed by the same team that delivered those classic, early-Gfriend melodies (Rough, Navillera, Me Gustas Tu, etc). Juicy hinges instead on cutesy playground chants, delivered with brash vocal tones that grate from the very first moment. Pitched as a summer song, Juicy incorporates a few seasonal effects. Its pre-chorus is supported by a neat vocal arrangement, but that’s about the only strength I can pull from this annoying little ditty. Most of its instrumental is lifeless, merging trap beats with synth flourishes that have no identity of their own. The chorus is nothing short of obnoxious, fusing a sing-song nursery rhyme melody to an equally irritating repetition of “juicy juicy juicy juicy juicy.” This is K-pop at its most infantile, and wastes whatever potential Rocket Punch may have. Woollim, what are you thinking?
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