Song Review: The Boyz – Roar

The Boyz - RoarThough they’ve delivered a standout b-side or one-off colab here and there, I haven’t enjoyed a title track from The Boyz since 2020’s The Stealer. I love the guys and think they’re incredibly talented (especially when it comes to performance), but at a certain point that isn’t enough. If an act consistently lacks the kind of music I want to turn up and enjoy on its own, there’s not much reason to support them. In short, I’m desperate for a song that re-kindles my pre-2020 hype for The Boyz.

Unfortunately, new single Roar will not be that song. It lacks the cloying instrumental and structural elements that have plagued much of their recent work, but like many current boy group efforts it feels more like an excuse to pose dangerously than a fully-fledged musical idea. Roar takes a seductive approach, unveiling a languid beat that’s overstuffed with percussive elements when it should have opted for a simpler – more beguiling – groove. The production plods along, occasionally growing to grandiose peaks. On the plus side, the guys’ voices sound great and I like the dramatic dance break and power note during the climax.

As always, Roar’s true merits come down to its melody. The song doesn’t offer much in this regard. It opts for an EXO Love Shot approach, bolstering its chorus with a catchy (but repetitive) “da da da.” In fact, the entire track is very EXO-adjacent. It’s a shame that the arrangement is too claustrophobic to let anything breathe. Its main purpose seems to be as a soundtrack for a series of striking visuals. That will probably be enough to maintain the group’s enduring popularity, but I’m still looking for the entry point that’ll pull me back into their discography.

Hooks 8
 Production 7
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7

Grade: C


27 thoughts on “Song Review: The Boyz – Roar

  1. I came to the realization during the morning commute the other day with the classical radio on at 0 dark 30 that any classical piece that has the words “humoresque” or “caprice” or “capriccio” or even perhaps most rondo’s, those styles of composition just drive me nuts. Its so contrived. And they are supposed to be funny and wind up just pandering to those who have no other source of good humor in their lives. The violinist smiling cheekily at the audience as he surprises them again with a false ending of some extravagant cadenza, oh ha ha ha you got me there.

    So too with this style of kpop boy group composition. I don’t know if it has a name or should have a name, but it is everywhere, and I have pretended to like them, and sometimes I do, but usually yeah nah. And everyone has one or three of these in their repertoire.

    Buh buh bum (pause), buh buh bummmm (pause), and repeat.

    The style is so plodding. Trying to be serious and dark like a masquerade, trying to make some sort of deep point about the nature of humanity and humankind and the unfairness and deep irony of it all, or something. Last years Kingdom “Ascension” with its Ra-ta-taaa chorus came to mind. There are many others.

    I just can’t.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I was an early, casual fan of the Boyz, with Giddy Up as a big favorite for me. But agreed, the last few years they lost me. They came to Chicago last summer and if the music had stayed high quality I would have seen them. But like this song, it was a skip for me.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Gosh, WTF is their agency doing?! Every time The Boyz release a new song, the duller, more generic and thereby off-putting their discography gets…
    Those guys have got SO MUCH potential, but, as usual, they are never fucking given a chance to shine.😖😖
    DAMN, I HATE TBZ, though, ofc, not the members themselves….💔😭


  4. ok listen i have NO idea what the rest of yall r on bc to me (the comments sections resident deobi) this is my fav tt of theirs in a LONG fucking time. its like if u put no air and the stealer (two of my absolute fav tts of theirs) in a blender and they absolutely KILLED it

    also wanna mention that unlike a lot of their tts over the past couple years (and ESPECIALLY whisper) it just feels authentically…..them yk? like they actually were given the time to fully flesh out this concept and make it their very own

    though i will say i do wish theyd fleshed out the verses/chorus a bit more and the “ro ro roar” in the dance break shouldnt have been there at all but overall. i couldnt have asked for a better comeback after the hell ist put us through last year. strong 8.5 out of 10 for me

    (and if nothing else that music video is STUNNING rigend films completely outdid themselves)


  5. The song is just okay but I gotta say I was pleasantly surprised by the lack of english. I hope for more releases with less forced english or no english at all from kpop artists.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. I had high expectations for this comeback. The teasers were amazing and I really enjoyed the highlight melody but DAMN, it exceeded my expectations. This is SO GOOD.

    I was wondering why it was so good so I went to check the credits and to my surprise, I saw kenzie’s name. Anything she touches, will be good.

    Also, the production team behind this music video is INSANE.

    8.75/10 for me so far. I know for sure that my rating will rise though because they are my bias group.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. If there’s one thing The Boyz always does well in, it’s delivering a visually appealing MV. The production, filming and editing in Roar is what I wish my faves got. But I honestly have no idea what this song is about. What are they talking about? Letting out the inner predatory beast and following its carnal desires? It’s literally vague metaphor galore in this song. I was trying to understand the lyrics, which didn’t make much sense, and seeing how it connects to the MV, which also didn’t make much sense, all in the midst of figuring out who sings what because The Boyz is notoriously bad for having good line distributions. Coupled by the constant jump cuts between members in the MV and the song, and the bombastic striking instrumentals, it’s just so hard to digest and appreciate this song. I see this as a cross between Reveal and The Stealer, which fits in that genre atmosphere and this seductive nature suits them very well. But The Boyz will honestly do much better if they just let their music BREATHE. Let their members sing more than 3 second parts for once.


  8. I feel like the universe like inversed itself or our timelines wrapped that now groups I liked are now doing bad stuff and bad groups are doing good stuff. Like when did The Boyz get so good and Cravity get so good?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. This sounds remarkable inert for a song about unbridled lust. It’s not sly and slinky, or assertive and assured, or teasing and seductive. They say the words and do the moves but the delivery lacks conviction.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. I feel like The Boyz have this huge potential with their strong dancing skills and high production value, but somehow they always, always get subpar songs (or even below subpar) for title tracks. Roar, Whisper, Thrill Ride, Maverick, every song they release after The Stealer is always a disappointment for me.

    I know they are lacking strong vocals (Sangyeon and New are good singers but they don’t have distinct voice tone that stands out among others) so they make it up with dancing and sometimes acrobatic performance but I feel like it’s getting in the way too much to the point they have to keep doing songs that can incorporate strong and complex dance choreographies.

    In Roar it feels like each member barely sings more than 5 seconds, and to make it worse they all sound the same but they’re not singing in harmony so it’s like listening to one person singing a song but they pause few secs or so.

    Maybe it’s time for them to do subunits that can put more focus on certain members strong skills and capabilities.

    Liked by 3 people

    • no i completely understand like we are WAY overdue for a tbz subunit/solo outing….heres what im thinking

      – kyeopmuda (chanhee + sunwoo + changmin): very funky and fresh sounding kinda like early cbx
      – sunwoo + eric: smthn like exo sc where theyre rapping over chill groove type beats
      – juyeon solo: i mean. come on. the guy was practically born to do sexy taemin style songs


      • I’m definitely in for a Kyeopmuda unit! I think it can be a great start and can showcase more of Chanhee and Changmin’s vocals, and give more room for Sunwoo to play with his rap without being restricted too much by song duration or song theme.

        Or they can start small by maybe sending Hyunjae for a solo ballad OST (his voice is definitely created for sad ballad haha).

        Juyeon solo is also interesting but I see him more like the Kai type rather than Taemin. If he’s given a clear and proper direction, it could totally be a hit.

        Liked by 1 person

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