Song Review: Dongkiz – Beautiful

It’s a K-pop tale as old as time:

1. Bright, funky boy group releases a few great tracks, to middling success.
2. Bright, funky boy group gets swept into the dark embrace of moody trap music.
3. Moody, trap boy group still finds middling success, because 99% of idol sales and charting has absolutely nothing to do with the quality of the music.

So, what lesson do we take from this? It’s really quite simple: stick to your guns, slowly build a fan base and grow from there. Great music rarely spawns instant success in K-pop these days, but a great, consistent discography certainly breeds loyalty. What makes Dongkiz’s transformation particularly frustrating is that it comes just as their former funky, retro sound is starting to become trendy again. What a time to embrace trap!

To be fair, new single Beautiful isn’t really a trap song. It’s standard boy group K-pop with trap influences, and its instrumental is actually quite solid. It forgoes the tinny minimalism associated with the genre in favor of a beefed-up, guitar-assisted Western pastiche. The pre-chorus is especially grand, layering the guys’ vocals to brilliant effect even as its structure is utterly predictable.

Sadly, this appeal doesn’t last into Beautiful’s chorus, which is as melodically lazy as you’re ever going to hear. The droning approach to this hook utterly mystifies me. I mean, who thought this was a good idea? It’s as if the producers went out of their way to craft as ugly a refrain as they could. This is in direct contrast to the buoyant hooks of past Dongkiz tracks like BlockBuster and All I Need Is You. It feels particularly jarring on the heels of sub-unit I:KAN’s frothy throwback single Y.O.U. As opposed to that track’s title, Beautiful is a big W.T.F.

 Hooks 6
 Production 8
 Longevity 7
 Bias 7



9 thoughts on “Song Review: Dongkiz – Beautiful

  1. .
    Western cowboy whistle. So hip. So Ennio Morricone.

    And then … what passes for good boy kpop these days. Oh I do so miss the Dongkiz of 2019. Who are these people and what have they done with my Dongkiz? I loved the campy ghostbusters rollercoaster ride. This, notsomuch. Not at all, really.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. 6 comebacks in 13 months and I guess there’s still a 90% of KPop fans who don’t even know they exist. I would love to see their marketing plan, if there’s one.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. As an occasional shooter for Dongkiz (Lupin is still one of my favorite releases this year), this hurts so much. I still can’t really get into the I:KAN song, because the melody is so weak, but I appreciate what it’s trying to do. This… is just what every boy group has been doing for the past three years. It’s better than the average for me but that’s not saying much; it’s the first full-group single that isn’t going into my rotation, and I am sad about it.

    In other news: A.C.E are officially coming back in September. Here’s hoping that Savage was a one-off and not a sign of where their discography is heading…


  4. Really liking that instrumental and the lack of a trap rap breakdown in the 2nd verse ooff. The melody is fairly good as well, and that pulled me to the song.

    Now, what stopped me from calling this a nice dongkiz track? A weak hook and a lazy chorus. Nom, blockbuster, and fever were killer songs because of their hooks and bombastic chorus, and this one is just a big letdown.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. We lost another one, guys. I don’t attach myself to bright boygroups anymore because it seems like all of them without fail transition to the dark side, never to return again.


    • Well, they are good while they last, if only for a short period of time,

      You must have already heard MCND’s new one this morning too. Yes. I am just waiting for NIck’s thoughts, he must have many. Or perhaps few, But those thoughts, however many they are, will be strong.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m not as up-to-date with the kpop scene as you might think haha. Only just checked out that MCND song and I’m not a fan of that chorus- if it even really is a chorus?


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