Song Review: GWSN – Like It Hot

GWSN - Like It HotIt’s been just over a year since we last heard from GWSN, and their new album marks a shift in both sound and collaborators. As someone who has appreciated – but not loved – their past work, I wasn’t too interested in this comeback before hearing the teasers. But, The Other Side of the Moon’s highlight medley unveiled some striking sounds, in line with today’s trends but also a little experimental.

Of course, highlight medleys can be misleading. And when it comes to new single Like It Hot, the teasers definitely focused on the song’s strongest moment. Like It Hot has a great chorus – groovy and memorable. The girls sing in a lower register, bringing strength and charisma to the hook. The rhythm chugs along, assisted by guitar and restless hi-hats.

Unfortunately, everything surrounding this chorus is a mess. The verses and pre-chorus struggle to find an enduring melody, as the instrumental lurches this way and that without any clear end game. There’s an intangible quality to these segments, making it difficult to grab hold of any one element and find an entry point into the song. This is especially problematic during the post-chorus breakdown, which sacrifices rhythm for a sluggish, momentum-killing arrangement. This dissonance between chorus and verses makes it hard to enjoy Like It Hot as either a dance track or ethereal mid-tempo. And without a memorable performance or climactic moment, the song passes by without leaving much impact. It’s too bad, because that chorus has so much potential.

 Hooks 8
 Production 7
 Longevity 7
 Bias 7
 RATING 7.25


30 thoughts on “Song Review: GWSN – Like It Hot

  1. Its alright.

    So let’s talk songcraft. There is always some survival reality show contestant who is asked to do x and y, and instead does x y z p d & q. Then in the judging round, they neglect to perfect the x and y, while z p d & q are merely adequate. The song if you think too hard about it, is like that. It’s like their costumes, the half suit – half soft fairy outfit. I’m a little bit country, I’m a little bit rock n roll. Business in the front, party in the back.

    Its like my paragraph above. All statements are true, but none are fully right or well done.

    Also, the chorus reminds me of Oh My Girl “Dolphin” from last year.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I am actually disappointed with this release. The pacing is weird, it throttles any momentum it starts throughout the song, there’s no energy to be found. I tried listening 3 times cos I love GWSN but I just don’t like it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. At first listen, this song is like… not bad, but nothing special. It’s pleasant background noise to me, something I’ll add to my playlist for posterity but I doubt I’ll be returning to it much. It’s a shame because I was hoping for something with an energy in the vein of Red Sun or Bazooka, my two favorite tracks from them that still get me going every time. I’m obligated to give every GWSN release a listen due to my unstoppable dyking out every time I see Miya (lol) so I hope that soon they can go back to their more successful f(x) copycat formula.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. Fully being honest, I actually really like this song. I just wish the producer workshopped a little bit more. Because there is goddamn potential, and while I do enjoy the song. there was something there that could have elevated it into something more. I think the chorus and the rest of the song needed separate songs basically.

    And I’m somewhat suprised it’s the opposite for you. I loved the verses, the pre-chorus and the bridge the most out of the song. The chorus was a bit odd for me though I still like it.

    Also, please give this producer some actual drums or better sounding drum samples. This percussion is killing me. I don’t mind it, but this song would’ve sounded much better if those samples weren’t so default sounding.

    …Now with that out of the way.

    OKAY. GWSN is very much a b-side/album girl group. When r/kpop ranked their songs on Reddit, a b-side won. This had only happened twice before, and those were Jonghyun and Day6. GWSN has more appeal in their b-sides, than their title tracks. I certainly love GWSN for their albums, and I think most fans love their albums not just their title tracks. Not to say it’s fully appealing, because Nick seems to have never Buried Treasure-d GWSN… which is fine. But I think they have a chance this time.

    I can confidently say that Like It Hot is the worst song on this mini album. Literally every other song in this album impressed me (though the title track’s impressed me in other ways too). I don’t listen to every mini album but this is probably shooting straight to Top 3 for the ones I did this year.

    Though I like all the songs, if there’s a song to get Nick… it’s that b-side that Taemin should’ve bought from GWSN and made his title track because HOLY FUCK. It’s the song GWSN should’ve made their single.

    I Can’t Breathe is probably the best song GWSN has ever made… ever. It’s GWSN’s style of house, but its best variation yet. It has the best use of whispering I’ve ever heard and no two chorus sounds the same. It has an amazing melodies and hooks. It has incredible low tone backing vocals. Despite the sparseness of the production, it never feels like the energy is low. I love every section whether verse, pre-chorus, chorus or post-chorus. I love the idea that it’s the Narcissus myth in the lyrics (though I’m not sure if this is the interpretation).

    It’s mysterious. It’s intense. It’s controlled. It’s the dark that most boy groups wish they were. I can’t stop listening. If a song deserved a Buried Treasure, it’s this. It’s honestly, a 10 for me.

    Liked by 6 people

    • I Can’t Breathe is so fucking strong. I don’t know if it’s the “type” of song that works for a title track, but fuck it’s just so good LOL. I am among the few that enjoyed Like It Hot but I am in LOVE with I Can’t Breathe.

      They really are such an “albums” group – their bsides are consistently strong and they have almost no songs that would constitute as filler.


  5. The chorus threatened to salvage the whole thing for me… until I realised it’s just YooA’s Diver on a budget. Better luck next time, ladies!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I was charmed by much of the song. I don’t care as much for the post-chorus la- la- la- like it hot, which feels like an interruption rather than a continuation of the song, but I liked the airy quality to their singing. They have such pretty voices, and I think I have a crush on the rapper. I just found a video of her dancing to Taemin’s Criminal and – oh my – modeling vintage fashion. I would say Like It Hot definitely piqued my interest in them.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. I actually quite liked it. Yes, the verses were uninspired and kind of felt half done. But while the chorus is something we’ve began to hear a lot from boy groups, it is nice to hear a girl group tackling this kind of sound over either cutesy chants that are high pitched to the ear or repetitive girl crush.

    The mini album is very strong though. All the songs are really unique and most of them are Synth heavy. This release has definitely piqued my interest on gwsn.

    Liked by 3 people

    • E I E I O probably has to be one of the oddest songs I’ve ever listened to. It’s swing nature makes it feel like sea shanty along with the chugging bass and beat.

      It really shouldn’t work as well as it does but the way they play with the beat in the chorus is insane and the composition is just astonishing. Even with the weird hook they make it stand out and enjoyable. The final chorus is incredible when they cut out the beat, then bring it back.

      Plus with the random flourishes and sounds that is littered through this song makes it feel so much like we’re travelling the high seas.


  8. I actually think the song is NUTS:

    The instrumental in the verse is pointing towards a very interesting direction and it is one of the attempts saying “it can work”, and the switch up is also pretty crazy and also “can work”.


  9. It felt to me like they had two half-finished songs to work with and pulled what they felt like were salvageable parts from each but then left it there instead of reworking them to make it all feel like one song.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. i don’t… know how i feel about this song.. it’s not my least favorite gwsn title, but it also isn’t my favorite (that’d be bazooka, i think). the song isn’t bad? but it also isn’t too memorable? and some parts feel like they’re not too connected. but all in all, i’d revisit it maybe once in a while i think, it’s really inoffensive, but not too often.


  11. when listening to the chorus, does anyone else get reminded of “i can’t feel my face when I’m with you, but i love it, but i love it” or just me?


  12. Their sound & vocals are jaw dropping & different than other girl groups. Each track is rich with production, hooks, and vocal adlib. One difference is the fact that virtually all tracks on their albums are amazing.


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