It’s been a long time since I published a “top ten” post, but who better to reignite the feature than one of this era’s most dominant forces? Debuting in late 2018, ATEEZ have clawed their way to K-pop’s A-list on the back of edgy, exciting music.
As always, this list is comprised solely of title/promoted tracks (sorry, Take Me Home!). I included performance videos this time, but left off The Black Cat Nero since it’s a cover.
This was a tough one, as the group has many great title tracks beyond these ten highlights. Read on to see where your favorite landed on the list!
10. Guerrilla (2022)
Guerrilla is still too new to fully establish its place, but its aggressive mix of punk rock guitar and dystopian energy is dynamic enough to make the cut. (full review)
9. Hala Hala (Hearts Awakened, Live Alive) (2019)
ATEEZ have developed a reputation for fantastic pre-choruses, and Hala Hala cemented this status. The vocals here are spine-tingling.
8. Eternal Sunshine (2021)
ATEEZ don’t often go “bright” or “poppy” on their singles, but Eternal Sunshine proves they can thrive within this tonal shift. Its buoyant chorus is absolutely blissful. (full review)
7. Treasure (2018)
Opening with an off-kilter, atmospheric verse, Treasure soon grows into the kind of towering melody that sets ATEEZ apart from their peers. (full review)
6. Pirate King (2018)
Paired with Treasure, Pirate King laid out the ATEEZ sound to brilliant effect. It’s a warped, weird debut that sounded like nothing else on the charts.
5. Utopia (2019)
I’m able to include Utopia here because its Japanese version was released as a single. I’ll always prefer the original Korean track, but either version is a potent distillation of ATEEZ’s prickly pop sensibilities. That chorus hits like a sledgehammer. (full review)
4. Say My Name (2019)
Quite possibly 2019’s biggest grower, Say My Name quickly refined ATEEZ’s piratey sound and crafted one of their most iconic hits. It absolutely explodes during the climax. (full review)
3. Wonderland (2019)
Like a demented sea shanty, Wonderland bursts forth with unhinged energy and theatrical verve. It’s a blistering ride, melding ATEEZ’s power with an equally ferocious instrumental. (full review)
2. Answer (2020)
Answer opens with what may be ATEEZ’s best chorus and only grows from there. It’s an epic hallmark of their discography, concluding the first stage of their career with operatic intensity. (full review)
1. Wave (2019)
While not the prototypical ATEEZ song, Wave stands as a highlight of its era. To me, it’s a perfect summer track, from its robust percussion to the gorgeous synth textures. But, nothing compares to Wave’s final minute, which explodes with euphoric drive and melodic excellence. It gets me every time. (full review)
while Inception remains my fav Ateez title, Utopia really does have a special place in my heart (and I’m glad we got an mv for it, even though it’s the Japanese version) as well as Hala Hala.
always looking forward to their (hopefully not autotune fried like I’m the One but even that grew on me) new music. 🙂
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Love seeing ATEEZ get some attention!
Inception, Deja Vu and Answer are my personal top 3, though I certainly see Wave’s appeal 🙂
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“Read on to see where your favorite landed on the list!” it being Inception, it ain’t here :’) I dunno, when I first heard Inception something about it hit me straight in the gut and I couldn’t stop playing it. The post-chorus “I’m in love” hits like a train.
I think my top 10 would be something like…
4. Pirate King
7. Deja Vu
8. Hala Hala
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Haha the Inception fans are showing up today!
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What about Illusion? Still my favourite.
Wave is just otherworldly, and Answer is close behind for me as well—I love the endings for both of them. The final minute of every ATEEZ title always explodes.
Glad to see Utopia here too. That’s one of my favorite b-sides, ever.
I started liking them during Answer so that will always be #1 for me. not to mention every song they released after that (aside from Eternal Sunshine) were not exactly very good.
Yesss, my fave 4th gen group
For me, it is:
4. Say My Name
7. Eternal Sunshine
10. Pirate King
Overall, they’re a pretty solid group. They’ve had a few misses, but it’s okay. It’s okay. Everything’s okay. A Cyberpunk a album keeps my unhappiness away.
Where would Take Me Home be, if it were here?
Hmmm…. probably number three or four.
ATEEZ is a group I’ve had a rocky relationship with. At first, I was underwhelmed. Then I actually really disliked their music, their choruses were the stuff of nightmares as far as I was concerned and I found Hala Hala especially annoying. This frustrated me because I wanted to like them due to Leez’s involvement. But their stuff grew on me and I found myself falling for them in a huge way.
Then Fever happened and I got off the train again, lol.
But this latest mini has reignited my interest in them and hopefully it lasts. I am extremely a fan of Jongho’s vocals, for sure, and I have a fondness for Hongjoong due to his covers.
Anyway, my own rankings:
10. Say My Name
9. Pirate King
6. Eternal Sunshine
Also, if we were to include The Black Cat Nero, I would easily put it at 3. I adore that cover.
haha I’m honestly surprised that Wave is number one even when I know you actually have a kinda soft spot for brighter songs from boy groups. For me Wave is the least Ateez-like song ever so… 😅
Oof this was hard to rank. Top 2 are fixed; Wonderland is like one of my overall fave songs from 4th gen kpop and Inception is the first Ateez song I heard and I can never forget how even as a noob fan, a few verses in I instinctively went “Why does this sound so hauntingly good and similar to the Dreamcatcher songs? Is Leez Ollounder behind this?” 🙂
The rankings of the rest are based on mood 😭 :
3. Deja Vu
5. Halla Halla
6. Say My Name
8. Guerilla (this needs more time, but tentatively here)
9. The Real
If Japanese songs were included Dreamers and Rocky are definitely in there as well!! ❤❤ And Black Cat Nero would be an easy 3 if it was included too! 😀
I always enjoyed Thanxx out of all their tracks. As you can tell, I’m a real connoisseur.
Oh my wow, I can’t believe it’s already been 11 years since Treasure was released haha.
but in all seriousness, Treasure was such an amazing debut song.
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LOL good catch! My finger must have slipped…
While TXT might be my current 4th generation biases, ATEEZ held that card for so long. Say My Name wins it for me, it is a noisy amalgamation of so many soundscape elements into a cohesive whole.
Also, finally glad you agree with me that the performance MVs are singles, I remember screaming and crying about that on this site back in 2019. 2019-20 108 Ent was… interesting.
Ateez is generally too intense for me, but my top 5 would be:
1. Answer (by a long shot)
3. Eternal Sunshine
4. The Real
Answer is probably one of my favorite Kpop songs ever.
Interesting list. While I do enjoy Ateez’s bright songs I much prefer their grittier hip-hop tracks with a touch of euphoria since that’s the heart of their sound. My list would be:
3. Say My Name
5. Pirate King
7. HALA HALA
9. Eternal Sunshine
Wave is my favorite from them too!!
I’m a big fan of Ateez’s title track. Imo they are far better than their b-sides with a couple of exceptions.
My ranking would be:
5. Hala Hala
7. Fireworks (Think I’m the only one who likes this 😅)
8. Eternal Sunshine
Funny that you post this now as over the last month or so I’ve suddenly regained a lot of interest in Ateez….largely due to meeting a new group of friends who happen to be hardcore Atinys, and I’ve been quickly re-acquainted with their discography and flooded with Ateez content 😂😂
Anyways, I think I’d have the following list:
3. Say My Name
5. Eternal Sunshine
HR: Guerrilla, I’m really liking it!
I know you’ve always loved Wave, and while I see the appeal it’s never stood out to me more than just a decent summer track (sorry Nick :P).
Ah yes! ATEEZ! In this current generation of K-pop, I find them to be my favorite group (Aside from ONF of course!) mainly because of the fact that they have released some utterly fantastic music which suits my taste. I don’t know how to describe it, but their music is loaded with so many feelings? It’s just so damn adventurous, makes me feel like I am going along a story. Granted, the Fever series kind of removed some of the impact, but it also had some of its highlights!
Yeah, this was also very hard for me to do. There’s just so much fantastic material here, that is almost pains to leave some of these songs out of the list.
It was kind of hard finding a placement for this one. There were plenty of songs which could’ve fit here, (most notably Turbulence and Aurora) but Treasure pulled through for me. It does have some flaws, mainly the autotune and second verse rap breakdown but it overcomes most of them due to ATEEZ’s excellent vocals. The chorus here hits hard!
09. Pirate King
This was one oddball of a debut, but I think it acts as the perfect introduction for ATEEZ. It’s a furious mix of theatrical strings, EDM hip-hop and the guys’ madcap energy. And best yet, it has a really fantastic pre-chorus!
My personal favorite Fever series title track! I really, really love the beat here. It’s rhythmic, spontaneous while having that piratey feel of ATEEZ’s Treasure series tracks. It also builds to such a stellar climax.
07. HALA HALA
Honestly, this song shouldn’t work. It has no definitive melody and it places swagger and performance over song but ATEEZ and Edenary make it work. The intense raps, breathless vocals and haunting, apocalyptic instrumental shape this up to be a highlight in ATEEZ’s discography.
I know this is new but Guerrilla just keeps on getting better and better. It has such a fresh arrangement, highlighted by so many musical goodies. The chorus maybe a bit undercooked, but it’s backed on by powerful-post chorus and a blistering psychedelic rock instrumental. And the song culminates in such a strong final minute that it makes me wanna press the replay button to experience that goosebump-inducing feeling all over again.
05. Say My Name
I really didn’t like this song at the beginning but now I’ve come to accept it as one of ATEEZ’s best. It’s punchy chorus is quite addictive, and the injection of airhorns and synth in that anthemic pre-chorus is so, so good. But like all ATEEZ songs, Say My Name’s best moment occurs in its final minute when it switches to its compelling bridge before dropping out to that explosive-synth drop.
I consider Wave to be my personal song of the summer. Yeah, it has a bit of nostalgia tied into it but it’s such a cathartic song. From it’s introduction, Wave teases hook after hook, bolstered by bombastic backing-vocals. And that final moment where the song culminates in a melodic coda? SO DAMN INCREDIBLE.
Yeah, this one is for the stadiums. Utopia has such a gorgeous melody, led by a mammoth refrain that encourages you to turn the volume all the way up. ATEEZ command this track like no other. Their vocals here are absolutely stellar, gritty and absolutely goosebump-inducing. Such a galvanizing anthem!
My favorite song of 2020 and one of the best K-pop songs of all time. Answer is such a majestic song, and the representative of everything I love about ATEEZ’s larger-than-life sound. It’s compelling, bombastic and performed beautifully. The harmonies here are crisp and magnetic, the melody is gorgeous and hard-hitting and the climax is absolutely transcendent. It unfurls each and every segment like a story, acting as the perfect conclusion to their incredible Treasure series.
This right here is a moment. Wonderland might be my favorite song of the new generation, it’s operatic piratey nature makes it find a place in K-pop whilst also being unique. I remember the first time I heard this track, I was absolutely smitten. It’s an experience like no other, fueled by dramatic percussion and trumpeting synths. The ever-changing instrumental is packed with so many highlights, including clanging cowbell. The sea shanty-esque chorus, while a bit odd at first, is absolutely awesome.
And when it all comes together for Wonderland’s finale, My gosh…this is my favorite musical moment from ATEEZ so far. The way how both refrains come together for a final repetition makes me lose my shit every goddamn time I hear it. This is, hands down, the best ATEEZ song.
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Will Answer ever be inaugurated to the Legendary Songs? ✊🏽😉
I’m a couple days late but I’ll chime in with my top as well. I had to relisten to everything to make sure but right now my top 10 would go like this:
2. Say My Name
4. Utopia (but the korean version)
8. Be My Lover
10. Deja Vu
Honestly I’d say that only my top 5 are songs that I really really enjoy with maybe Guerilla getting there in the long run.
Other than those I’d say I like the majority of ATEEZ’s singles except for the last 4 or 5 on the list. The remaining would go roughly like this:
11. The Real (Heung Ver.)
13. HALA HALA
16. Eternal Sunshine
18. Rocky (Boxers Ver.)
21. Pirate King
Always funny to see these especially when some songs fall on extreme opposites of different people’s lists.
I, for one, can’t particularly like Eternal Sunshine even though I should. It just does nothing for me. On the same note, for some reason Deja Vu’s chorus sticks to my brain even though I don’t love the song that much.