Song Review: TO1 – Freeze Tag

TO1 - Freeze TagThe addition of new members and a switch in concept has revitalized TO1. Though I wasn’t completely sold on Drummin’ the first few times through, it’s gone on to become a sleeper hit – one of my most played songs of 2022. It uses its messy boisterous for good, stuffed with hook after hook. New single Freeze Tag (얼음 땡) attempts to replicate that song’s success, but I’m not sure it’ll be as engaging in the long run.

The guys have switched producers this time, working with the D_answer team (of Pixy, INI and CRAXY fame). I’ve found this team’s output to be hit and miss (mostly miss), but I’m happy they’ve maintained the quirks that have made TO1’s reinvention so fun. Freeze Tag bounds on energetic guitar and punchy percussion. It’s bright and funky and overstuffed, similar to its predecessor. But unlike Drummin’, some of its chanting borders on obnoxious. Freeze Tag could do with more melody and less putzing around.

On the plus side, the first half of the song’s chorus is quite addictive. I like how they play with the percussion, pulling back on the rhythm to help the performance stand out. This compensates for the chanted post-chorus hook, which is more awkward than successful. Freeze Tag also lacks an instrumental flourish as addictive as Drummin’s whistling brass. It may sound like I’m constantly comparing the two songs, but in this case it’s really hard not to. They’re cut from the same musical cloth. Right now, I think Freeze Tag stands as a worthy – if slightly underwhelming – follow-up.

Hooks 8
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 9
 RATING 8.25

Grade: B


6 thoughts on “Song Review: TO1 – Freeze Tag

  1. I liked this! I loved the energy and I wasn’t annoyed by the chanting since it came after a real singing chorus.

    The mini album is an easy listen and a nice way for TO1 to end the year. It also makes me wonder what 2023 has in store for the group. I, like many, was expecting them to come out with a stereotypical dark/mature concept after losing some of their original members. Yet, both comebacks since that time have been about as upbeat and refreshing as any 4th gen boy group released this year.


  2. Nope, this one is a pass for me. Drummin’ quickly grew on me and it’s still present on my personal Spotify playlist. As for Freeze Tag, made it to 1:37 and then turned the song off. Rather than engaging, it seemed to be more like obnoxious. The centerpiece’s vocal hook is throwaway and forgettable, meanwhile that chanted post-chorus hook made me think whether I should rip out my ears, as they were close to bleeding. 6.75 at best for me.


  3. Drummin’s more annoying, more unpolished little brother. Even though the post chorus chant sounds like they recorded it from the inside of a milk can, I find it, for some reason, the main reason I keep coming back to this song

    Between this and 2 Baddies, I think I’ve become desensitized to badly mixed shouting


  4. It sounds a bit like old school Seventeen, which is not a bad era to imitate.
    Also, perhaps, overthinking it a shade too much.
    But hey, whatev, it is good fun.


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