Many times, context plays an important role in how I perceive a song. Take Mamamoo’s recently released Illella, for example. Had it arrived back in 2018 before the group’s music had made a sharp pivot into this style, I’d probably see it as a cool, attitude-first addition to their discography. But, the fact that it comes on the heels of many similar-sounding Mamamoo tracks dulls its overall appeal. Because of this, I find myself drawn toward their songs that paint slightly new tones.
1,2,3 Eoi! (하나,둘,셋 어이!) follows the general template of many recent Mamamoo tracks, but it does so within a different instrumental palette. The groove is funkier and looser, accented by pleasant synth and rhythm guitar. Better yet, it maintains its lively rhythm throughout its entire running time rather than collapsing into some TikTok-ready drop chorus. Mamamoo have always been engaging performers with plenty of individual character, and songs like this let them showcase that charisma in an entertaining way.
I also appreciate how 1,2,3 Eoi! references the group’s past work. The trademark harmonization of their moniker appears several times and there are a few exciting blasts of layered vocal arrangement that remind me of their unbeatable debut era. Sometimes, the track is too scattershot for its good without one defining centerpiece to keep all the competing hooks in line. But as a solid groove, 1,2,3 Eoi! is a late-career treat that rewards repeated listens. For a group of their stature, they’ve earned the self-referential victory lap.