Song Review: NewJeans – Hype Boy

NewJeans - Hype BoyIn an exciting turn of events, debuting girl group NewJeans are blitzing the K-pop market with a surprise set of pre-release videos before their album drops in August. This uncharacteristic approach feels very fresh for the industry and, so far, the music has felt quite new as well. Songs like Attention and Hype Boy have a global pop sound that will be familiar to most. But their focus on vocals and relatively straightforward song construction go against 2022’s K-pop grain. There’s something very natural about these tracks.

I don’t like Hype Boy as much as yesterday’s Attention, but there’s no denying how strongly its languid sound fits within current pop trends. The vocals sound great – freed from the hyper affectations usually placed upon groups. The girls luxuriate in the melody, pulling and twisting the notes in a way that feels confident and carefree. They’re making a strong impression even before their individual personas are known. That’s another welcome shift for K-pop.

Musically, Hype Boy doesn’t distinguish itself as memorably as I’d like. It’s laidback and fun and its hook has a cyclical energy that’s bound to work its way under your skin with repeated listens. Verses meld seamlessly with choruses, crafting a track that feels like one hot summer afternoon. Tropical chirps meet future bass style synths, giving Hype Boy a hazy – almost melty – quality. The percussion picks up during the hook, and I’m quite partial to the warped loop that caps off this segment. I don’t see this becoming my favorite track on the upcoming album, but I appreciate the vibe it’s setting for NewJeans.

 Hooks 8
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7
 RATING 7.75


24 thoughts on “Song Review: NewJeans – Hype Boy

  1. ok, I’m the opposite of you on this. I much prefer this than ‘Attention’ from before. I really like the way that the pulsing beat stopped right before the chorus and returned with the chorus making it feel a bit more impactful. Solid song with a solid score of 8 for me

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I still like Attention more just cuz the overall direction is something more in my wheelhouse but this isn’t bad and with literally only two songs NewJeans has already carved out an identity for themselves so kudos for that.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Ah, it’s like a song that gets played at the pool, which you then associate with scent of sunscreen and chlorine and the sound of splashing and laughter.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. It’s fine. I don’t listen to this kind of song in English, much less in kpop, so it isn’t my style, and I am probably not in their ultra-targeted demographic anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just curious, what is “this kind of song”? I am not really sure in what bag would I put it. Maybe 2000’s diva pop? I would like to find more songs of the style personally haha


      • When I think of 2000’s diva pop, I think more belty songs, Kelly Clarkson Pink etc or angsty stuff like Avril Lavigne.

        This sound here is more late 90’s soft R&B a la Robyn “Show me love” era. (Robyn not Robin, link below) Someone below mentions kpop’s SES which is also apt. Perhaps Jewel’s 0304 album – vocal in that Jewel raw style but with her folky guitar swapped out for pop.

        This was in the era before Autotune and Melodyne so one must mentally adjust the vocal stylings from live with sung harmonies sound then to high post production polish with crafted harmonies now.

        For style, I am seeing debut era SNSD girl next door, “approachable” (in theory).


  5. This is what I imagine Blackpink would sound like if they weren’t limited to Teddy’s formula. It’s essentially a western pop song with korean lyrics.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. ahhhh another one…so into it…I think prefer Attention for its more throwback groove and vocal harmonies, but I appreciate the ways that “Hype Boy” brings in some contemporary production elements. The way the vocal chop transitions from the first chorus to the second verse is quite excellent.
    I’m really aboard these promotions and might just have to stan NewJeans.


  7. I really like the vocals. I’m impressed how developed their voices are despite them being really young. The song itself tho, it’s nice like attention. I like them kind of equally. I’m interested to see what they’ll do in the future.


  8. I really, really like it! Watching all the different versions really ingrained the song into my brain, I can’t wait to have it on repeat when it’s actually out.


  9. I’m seeing a lot of people say it’s like a western pop song with Korean lyrics. I don’t necessarily disagree with that, but I feel like a western singer would try to stylize their performance so much that wouldn’t be able to bare it. Also english lyrics could possibly inhibit my enjoyment depending on what they were. The instrumental is arranged in a western way but some of the texture choices I associate more with kpop


  10. I can’t hide my desire to listen to the entire debut album. Only 2 days and they have already clearly differentiated themselves from other girl groups, plus their acting in these MVs are great and so spontaneous, I’m about to become a fan.


  11. Ooh, I actually like this better than Attention. It has a nice mood to it, very 2000s in its field. Min Heejin was such a good find for HYBE. Now that Hitchhiker has joined them too, I wonder what he is going to do, maybe make a crazy club group? Sell 10$?


  12. I LOVE THIS. my pet peeves about this song is just.. there are some weird “ticking” instrumental at the back of the chorus, and that somehow, for me, just sounds off…

    if anyoone can tell me what is that off-set ticking named, please enlighten me up.


  13. ‘hype boy’ is not THAT song but the music videos are such a delight! 4 pieces of great storytelling, it’s very compelling and reminds of me how i felt with loona predebut era (so exciting!)
    i think that i’ll stan this group and see how many tricks min heejin can pull out of her sleeves…


  14. They remind me of S.E.S with the R&B stylings. This likely means that, like with S.E.S, they’ll only have a handful of songs that stick with me.


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