Though Nature aren’t yet well-known to the general public, they’ve amassed a solid discography that hasn’t been afraid to experiment with new sounds. We haven’t heard from them since June of 2020 – a lifetime when it comes to K-pop groups. But, they’re finally back with the boisterous Rica Rica.
I’m not entirely sure what to make of this track, but I give it credit for throwing everything it can at the listener. My favorite Nature tracks are a little bonkers (Oopsie (My Bad)), so Rica Rica’s noisiness isn’t unwelcome. But, the song is too unfocused to land many punches. There are parts I enjoy – mainly the crazy energy of its chorus. However, the verses are a mess. The percussion and sampled chants make for an interesting soundscape. I wish Rica Rica leaned into this one element instead of throwing a million other ideas over the top. The pre-chorus is pitched way too high, and the second verse switch-up doesn’t work at all.
On the plus side, I love the effusive instrumental break that follows the chorus and then re-forms for an equally brazen bridge and outro. The production here feels large and confident, giving Rica Rica a stadium-ready energy that would benefit from live performances. More of this, please, Nature! But as it stands, the track is too piecemeal to hang together, enjoyable in spurts but also exhausting. It’s worth getting through to reach those good parts, but I can’t see myself returning to it often.