Review

Song Review: The Boyz – She’s The Boss

The Boyz - She's The BossIt’s been a dispiriting run of boy group tracks this year. Musical diversity has taken a backseat to cut-and-paste sameness. Same beats. Same attitude. Same bluster. It’s becoming a real challenge to write about these songs in new ways. There’s nothing to analyze or wonder about, and the songs are so stitched together by corporate decision-making that they tend to lack groove, warmth or life. Nobody’s having any fun or trying anything new. Mix-and-match production teams churn out a proven formula – most likely at the agency’s behest – and quickly reassemble to create the same song for the next group in line. It doesn’t feel sustainable. It certainly doesn’t capture the imagination.

Despite my tirades, I really do try to anticipate each new idol release without the baggage of the last. That’s getting harder to do, but most of these sound-alike groups manage to eke out a highlight or two when they’re not trying to copy one another. The Boyz have had a mixed track record, delivering some high highs and low lows. Sadly, the lows have been far more frequent over the past year, and new Japanese single She’s The Boss follows this worrying trend. In fact, I fear the song opens with the worst thirty seconds of their entire musical career.

This “farty brass loop,” as I not-so-affectionately call it, has worn out its welcome. The instrumental is abrasive – not in a daring punk way but in a totally predictable K-pop way. The lyrical concept is appreciated (the idol world could do with an authentic infusion of matriarchy), but the mind-numbing repetition of “boss boss boss,” “love love love” and (especially) “ball ball ball” is anything but. There’s a decent chorus buried somewhere in here. However, its pull isn’t strong enough to compensate for all the aural shrapnel you have to dodge to get there. Taken alongside Golden Child’s recent Rata-Tat-Tat, it feels like K-pop agencies are just chucking any unused track they have at the Japanese market in the hopes of a quick cash-in.

Hooks 7
 Production 6
 Longevity 6
 Bias 5
 RATING 6

50 thoughts on “Song Review: The Boyz – She’s The Boss

    • I love my bgs, and I am suffering. Listening to lots of Japanese disco, Deadbuttons, old stuff, and 2022 girl group tracks to fill the void.

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  1. Okay I’m curious, I’ve been trying to expand my knowledge of jpop over the last few months and I’m wondering if songs like these actually appeal to the jpop landscape? My experience with jpop groups has been very limited and I certainly do get that there’s diversity there and it’s not like there’s one general magical formula, but it surprises me that so many recent Japanese releases are following this kind of trend – do companies really go into this thinking this’ll make them stick out, especially now that there are a couple of kpop-esque jpop groups like JO1/INI etc.?

    At the least, I’m wondering why groups don’t try for Japanese ballads or R&B? That seems like it’d also work at a similar level at least.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Not at all, especially in the Johnny’s sphere (the company monopolizing Japan’s boy band industry), where the only thing that comes close to this “noise music” is maybe Snow Man, but even then they just released the up-beat funky Brother Beat lol

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      • I see, I heard Snow Man’s D.D. and was then surprised by the fact that their other singles have been pretty diverse. Very surprising then that this sound seems to be pushed by so many different groups, and not necessarily something that might play it ‘safer’ for their Japanese ventures

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        • Snow Man have songs and hooks for days, and have been rewarded with the highest J-idol sales of the past few years. Thank goodness for that.

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  2. sigh. every day i wake up with lower and lower expectations for bgs. nothing much else to say besides i’m hoping that seventeen’s comeback won’t be disappointing as well.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Does anyone expect anything from japanese kpop releases? I mean Gfriend’s Memoria and SNSD exist but that’s basically it. 90% of the time they are pots and pans instrumentals.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Not always! SHINee’s J-pop discography was excellent. Tohoshinki/TVXQ too. Infinite and Boyfriend put out good j-pop stuff, and 2PM had some great singles. So did After School. B1A4 and (some) Seventeen are also on the list. EXO’s Japanese album is one of my favorites of theirs.

      Liked by 3 people

      • In my opinion, B1A4 has my favorite J-pop discography out of all K-pop groups. Happy Days, Until We Meet and Sukidakara Shouganai are some of my all-time favorites.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I admit I may have been a tad bit too harsh. But I do still feel like most non-SM companies who do non-japanese versions ventures into Japan, more often than not make these noisy tracks as just some random bad track they can afford to throw away just for a quick buck in physical sales. SM on the other hand, mainly with Red Velvet and NCT 127 feel like they’re trying to pull off some artistic statement with the literal pots and pans songs. Still, I think japanese songs being overall bad is more of a 2016 onwards phenomenon than from before. I of course was excluding artists like BoA and TVXQ from my comment, even tho i forgot to mention so.

        Liked by 1 person

    • I believe there’s been some great J-pop material from K-pop groups! I think just seeing most of the J-pop songs we know so far happened to be made by K-pop groups this year just happened to be… well… That. The only exception I can think of is released this year that was really good is TVXQ’s Epitaph mini!

      I’m not very familiar with the girl groups, so I apologise in advanced if the ones I list may not appeal to you a lot given they’re all… Boy groups I’m familiar with.
      – Pentagon: Most notably their debut, “Cosmo”, and my personal favourite b-side “Seasons” (which I think deserves a lot of attention).

      – Day6’s material for Japaense are pretty solid, like the edgy “Stop The Rain” and “Finale” (a personal favourite song of mine by them).

      Liked by 1 person

    • After School’s Dress To Kill album is better than 95% of entire Korean groups discographies.

      Also Pentagon’s Cosmo is probably the best Japanese single a boy group has ever done.

      Where most groups fail is that they either use a remake song or just don’t bother to learn what is popular in Japan and think any old bollocks will do.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. *sigh*

    I’m fucking tired of raging, so the only thing I’ll say is just:

    YOU ARE MISTREATING YOUR OWN ARTISTS WHEN YOU STILL GIVE ‘EM THESE NOISY ULTRA-GENERIC PIECES OF TRASH. Why are doing it again?…Why?…..
    Give us something new!!! Please…😭😭😭
    Have you got it, dear agencies?!

    Mid-5’s for me.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. as a pretty huge deobi i can more or less say that since their company merged w plan a to make ist theyve been done so dirty……i mean for the upcoming US leg of their world tour they found a touring company that has no experience whatsoever and it SHOOOOWS like they announced it only 2 months ago and didnt even put the tickets on sale until literally a MONTH AND A HALF later and to make matters worse eric is still on hiatus and only the touring company (not even ist themselves) announced he wouldnt be there AND ONE OF THE CONCERTS IS IN HIS HOMETOWN THAT HE ALWAYS DREAMED OF PERFORMING WITH HIS GROUPMATES AT SO HIS FAMILY COULD WATCH HIM…….

    but yeah as for the song itself their jp discography is just….not good lmao i totally agree w u that ist is just taking the throwaway songs and going “welp ig japan can have this” also this song and maverick had some of their coolest looking concepts but they just HAD to waste them on a mid song……..

    i just hope that once eric comes off hiatus their bad music curse gets broken like w verivery

    Liked by 3 people

    • oh yeah and i forgot to mention that theyre barely promoting this song at all like if u go on their instagram the concept photos arent even arranged all together like in normal cb cycles theyre just. thrown in there with all of the other individual posts from the members

      Liked by 3 people

      • It’s sad because the members are very talented, but the boyz’ latest title releases don’t show their full potential musically. The most worrying thing is that the company knows they are too famous and anything they release will sell like hell, so they are releasing more stuff in a short period of time even if it’s of dubious quality. Since they are still going to release the mini album I’m still looking for the bsides.

        Liked by 1 person

    • not to be rude but why are you even reviewing unpromoted japanese pieces knowing that fresh out of a 2y hiatus of nothing for the japanese markets boy groups are going to have this quality fresh out of the gate? got people in these comments going “at least we got ROAD B” try to support those men if you’re going to use them as examples at least. i’d put this effort in reviewing music in another genre if this is so begrudging for you 😕

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      • apologies this wasn’t really a reply at you but for the page in general i pushed the wrong reply button – although i think if we’re going to use an f tier boy group as an example we should at least be able to know their names 😵‍💫

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      • …..
        Kind of agree with you. Key word: Kind of. The repeated exclamations of “at least we got ROAD-B” is dumb because we’ve only seen their debut so far and we have no idea what their future holds. It’s also the fact that people don’t really care about the group, just have an extreme affinity for Sweetune (I may be wrong here though). ROAD-B is also extremely unknown, so who is to say they’ll be churning out music in the near future? This site is more excited about the resurgence of Sweetune rather than the debut of these guys, which is fair.

        What I disagree with you is the Japanese releases. Firstly, this is a review site which churns of daily writings of both the korean and japanese industry, of course Nick is going to review this kind of stuff. Secondly, you’ve basically implied in your comment that the quality here is lackluster in itself….so…if it’s lackluster, shouldn’t it warrant a review and score like that? Thirdly, your comments about having a “hiatus” from the Japanese industry resulting in boring music is wrong as well. Songwriters can very well write a melody and not pull the same dull tropes over and over again.
        This is a review site my man, it’s all subjective. I am telling you, plenty of other people would love to hear his opinions regarding their favorite groups’ songs, just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean other people don’t. If you wanna stand your ground with this song, then do so. I’d put effort in actually explaining why I think Nick is wrong with this song rather than complaining that he’s a grumpy rude old man.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. I really hated that intro and the lyrics feel disingenuous and cringey to me. I did like the chorus and parts of the instrumental quite a bit, but I don’t think they’re strong enough to justify returning to this track

    Also, I feel like Japanese songs from kpop groups have more English than Korean ones. Anyone agree?

    Liked by 3 people

  7. I only listened to this song because I wanted to find out what the worst thirty seconds of their entire musical career was, and I respectfully disagree…”Back in the game, son” is still the worst!

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  8. I’m not even gonna touch this.

    Bring back the run of Boy to Bloom Bloom era TBZ. I will post this on every TBZ review until I get what I want (which will be never so)

    Liked by 3 people

  9. I was waiting for this review.

    I saw the trailers for the song and was quite shocked by what I found. I don’t remember their past releases being this…bad. Figured I wait for a review before putting myself through another mish mash noise song, thankfully.

    BGs have to stop doing this trend, my ears can’t take it anymore. At this point they’re beating up a dead horse.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. “The worst thirty seconds of their entire musical career” aligns very well with what I was feeling when listening through that awful introduction.

    I actually like the parts of the song where they’re not rapping.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. coming back to this to say that the bsides on the mini album this song comes from are so much better……like theyre not my favorite thing tbzs ever put out (more mid tier in terms of their other bsides imo) but still why couldnt yall have just made why why why the tt instead

    Like

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