Song Review: Xikers – Tricky House

Xikers - Tricky HouseEvery time I read the word “Xikers,” my mind immediately imagines an exaggerated Scooby Doo-esque character making colorful exclamations like “Zowwwee!” and “Gee willikers!”. That probably says more about me than the group in question.


Xikers are the newest act from KQ Entertainment – home to the tremendously popular ATEEZ. With that pedigree, they’ve got a legacy to live up to. I’d love their music to elicit earnest reactions like “zowee!”, but my expectations for K-pop’s boy groups are at an all-time low. And sure enough, debut track Tricky House (도깨비집) is serviceable but slight – more a dance performance than a fleshed out idea.

It’s clear that KQ are intent on turning Xikers into ‘ATEEZ Junior,’ as nothing about Tricky House attempts to forge a sound of their own. It feels like an ATEEZ b-side, from its familiar vocal effects to the chant-along climax. The bulk of the track is driven by a fun (but familiar) dance beat, which takes precedence over melody or chorus. Its centerpiece is largely composed of a few well-placed grunts. If you’re going to copy ATEEZ’s template, at least give us some of their towering melodic hooks!

Overall, Tricky House feels polished and well-delivered but completely extraneous.

Hooks 6
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7
 RATING 7.25

Grade: C


42 thoughts on “Song Review: Xikers – Tricky House

    • I believe this song is such a good song and it is ordinary and interesting. to all the bg songs I have listened to. And also really good beats, this song brings out their true selves.


  1. Yoopsie! I saw a tweet some days ago saying they’re pretty sure all Xikers’ songs were meant for ATEEZ, as some years ago their main producer and Hongjoong said they had about 400 songs just ready to be released. I’m not completely sold on that, because I just find it so dumb. KQ wouldn’t do that, right? But then I might be overestimating their intelligence.
    The song’s fine, but it has no identity. I can picture ATEEZ doing this, and doing it better. The boys deserve new songs to show what they’re *actually* here for.
    (unless, of course, that they’re just here to be atz2.0, then they can just go home about it…)


  2. prompt >_

    ATEEZ leftover, ATEEZ soundalike vocals, moombahton mood, early TXT style, anonymous k-pop boy group pastiche, a metro and a man in black suit, a ferrari, lots of vroom! vroom! fx, lots of skrrt! skrrt! fx, 8K resolution, highly detailed, overposing here and there and everywhere, nice choreo, 4 minutes.

    (Rockstar is much better, IMHO, but the whole ep is definitely annoying)

    Liked by 2 people

  3. i like the song well enough! mostly excited to see what they do from here.

    i do agree it does have an “ateez” sound to it – i can’t personally picture ateez themselves doing this song, but can see where you’re coming from for sure.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Zoinkers! I really wanted their debut not to give so many “ATEEZ jr” vibes. I get that they have the same in-house producers, and even Hongjoong took part in composing the song. Still, I don’t see the point in debuting a new group to sound like a lite version of your previous group, which is still very successful and is at least three years away from its oldest member enlistment. Clearly, the members are very talented and give a great performance but I’d think it will be much more interesting to watch them find their own signature sound rather than borrowing from their seniors.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I think what’s preventing them from having those towering melodic hooks is that they don’t have a jongho-esque vocalist in the group. I’m not trying to compare them with Ateez but it seems like for a group with this skillset, this direction is probably the most feasible for them to do? Especially since KQ artists always aim to sing live. They could have done better with a melodic chorus tho

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Jumping Jehosepeth! I must admit when I hear a song title that includes the word Tricky, my mind goes way old school. As a bonus, the verses are a genuine short-form limericks

    This speech is my recital,
    I think it’s very vital
    To rock (a rhyme), that’s right (on time)
    It’s Tricky is the title

    Liked by 2 people

    • A great and timeless song.
      It suddenly takes me back to that old BTS video of them dancing to it in a practice room (or backstage?), which I replayed as many times as you might imagine a teenaged boy group stan to do.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Crikey! I don’t dislike it!
    I’m not really an ATEEZ fan (for no other good reason than I just never got into them) and I would’ve genuinely believed that this was ATEEZ’s latest comeback. It sounds so much like their musical style, kind of a shame this group didn’t get to try on something unique to them.

    Anyway, this has good stompy shouty pirate energy. It’s not really compelling enough for me to save, but I enjoyed listening to it.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Yikes! I think me and my sis had a more elaborate discussion on the group name than the song itself 😂 The song is alright – definitely agree with all the comments here. It felt like a diluted Ateez song with lots of autotune thrown in. I almost feel the group is an inverse of Ateez with tons of rappers and a few vocalists…. I don’t even remember the vocalists by the end lol. Yeah, Ateez songs have a few of those glorious centrepiece vocal parts which somehow tie together such kind of songs and that’s what makes it stand out.

    I definitely liked Rockstar more than this – the chorus though was very Guerrilla like 😂

    Also I’m so happy to see I’m not the only one who got the Scooby Doo vibes 😂 I’ve been yelling out my best impersonation of the name in Shaggy and Velma’s voices for days now ever since I saw the name!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Yikersss!!! I think I have a different opinion to the majority so far. I’ve said this on reddit already.

    I don’t think it sounds like Ateez at all. Ateez songs have a signature quality with special emphasis on strong build ups, power notes, and giving a larger than life and cinematic appeal both song wise and MV wise. Hence I would disagree that this song sounds like Ateez.

    With that said, I’m not the biggest fan of the song overall. There were certainly elements that I liked, with the rapping being noticeably impressive. Probably some of the best kpop rapping I’ve seen low key. Some of the production choices were also cool like the percussion. However the lack of melody in the song is kind of a pain. It will certainly be fun to watch live but not something to go out of my way to listen to.

    Among boy group debuts this year, I much preferred 8turn TicTac, because even if it employs a lot of similar elements in regards to the chanting and rapping, it still holds itself together with a catchy melody line in the chorus in the form of nananana. This song doesn’t have anything like that hence I forgot basically everything that I heard except the cool rap. Probably a flat 7 for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • 8Turn’s Tic Tac has definitely been a grower for me! It has all the elements of the new gen bg songs and ordinarily it would have just blended into the whole mix… yet it somehow has it’s own place on my list now. I agree that the melody of Tic Tac does really well to tie together the other chant-like rap parts!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. It’s fine, but I would never come back to this song again. Another disinteresting piece of 4th gen boy group fare. Rating-wise, would give it a flat 7.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Every time I read the word “Xikers,” my mind immediately imagines an exaggerated Scooby Doo-esque character making colorful exclamations like “Zowwwee!” and “Gee willikers!”
    It’s really not just you. This does sound like an Ateez song, everything I dislike about Ateez music at times in fact. To be honest I’m kinda flabbergasted that Ollounder is on the credits for it however many positions down the credit order. He almost always writes music I like so it was so strange to hear something completely outside my zone.
    Would like them to have a different unique sound for their group.


  12. I’m going to be optimistic and say that KQ is debuting them with this sound since it’s a proven bet and sells well, freeing up ATEEZ to pursue new directions with plenty of name recognition under their belt.

    From my lips to God’s ears!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh lordy lord! Basically copy and paste your thoughts about the song here. I just wanna say that I really enjoyed the video, I honestly just watched it with the music in the background. At least that’s something


    • actually that first paragraph has a good ring to it; the mystery of the missing chorus

      man if universe was still alive nick would’ve wrote that kind of story


  14. Gee whiz!

    It’s a bit like bring-your-younger-brother-to-work day.

    But I don’t care. I love it. I love the energy.

    The music video is fun. If only they had ripped the mask of that guy at the end though and gone for a full Scooby Doo ending 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  15. This actually isn’t that bad, it sounds like a mix of TFN’s “amazon” and like someone earlier mentioned, Lapillus’ “gratata.” The performance is good, hopefully they can showcase more vocal ability, I’m tired of hearing all these kids “rap,” most of the time its completely unnecessary.


  16. Holy Mackerel! I kind of loved its dumbness and catchiness the way I love Omega X’s Love Me Like. As the children say, it’s a banger. But that name…reminds me of Rikers, like Rikers Island. Brrrr.


  17. I can’t get past the TERRIBLE decision of giving the salaryman the most screentime in the MV, haha.

    Offensively mediocre song. Here’s hoping it’ll win me over on music shows.


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