(G)I-DLE – I AM
4. DON`T TEXT ME
5. What's in Your House?
6. Hear Me
CUBE has debuted their newest girl group, (G)I-DLE! There are 6 girls in all: Miyeon, Minnie, Soojin, Soyeon, Yuqi, and Shuhua. If Soyeon looks and sounds familiar, she is a veteran of both 'Produce 101' and 'Unpretty Rapstar', not to mention she released her hit single "Jelly." Her history in the business is already well-established. This is exciting for CUBE fans as the last time they debuted a girl group was in 2015 with CLC.
Chock-full of interesting hooks against R&B melodies, "LATATA" picks up especially during the chorus, where an army of girls is proclaiming boldly. The power of the beat and the in-your-face attitude is what makes this song work so well. The hip-hop track "$$$" starts out with Soyeon's singular style, and layers attitude over a bit of cuteness in the chorus. They don't skimp on the hooks, though, giving it an explosive beat. This is a playful tune, and every bit as good as the title track.
The next song, "MAZE," kind of continues the club-banger vibe, and I got some EXID vibes from this one (that's meant as a compliment, BTW). I just heard some similarities, and it hit me in the bias bone. Love Love Love the belted chorus here and the way she turns the tables on the guy after the bridge. A fantastic jam and probably the best on the entire EP. "DON'T TEXT ME" is some smooth R&B. They harmonize extremely well, and I like how you can pick out the girls' voices here. The synth washes just contribute to this awesome package. It's a nice comedown after the bangers.
The R&B dance track "What's In Your House?" is just as smooth as "DON'T TEXT ME," but in a different way. The harmonies are higher and in some ways tighter. The hook is beautifully repetitive and goes perfectly with the rest of it. And just when you're grooving to it, along comes Soyeon to spit some sweet rhymes. "Hear Me" is an emotional ballad. It's also very different than the entire rest of the EP. It's got orchestral strings, and a piano and they work these well. There are awesome orchestral flourishes during the piece that just heightens the interest. Not all the vocals are under control, although the flaws do lend a raw authenticity to the piece. Props to them for not falling into the typical ballad trap -- they don't try to drown out the singer at the end.
I think this group is angling for the girl crush concept. Those are the girl groups I love, and frankly, we need more of them, with the field being divided between cute and sexy. I want fierce, and this band delivers. Soyeon handles her parts really well, particularly on "$$$." On track 2, her machine gun raps are astonishing. The timbre of her rapping is nothing we haven't heard before in everything from AOA to Blackpink, but it's her flow I'm most intrigued by. It grabs you by the collar and demands "pay attention to me!" This is a strong debut, and I can't wait to hear more from these talented ladies. Not crazy about the name, but hey, they didn't ask me.
Here's another MV where you really have little idea what's going on, but it looks like fun. Everything from playing with controllers, sitting on a pink horse statue, eating lollipops, and playing mini-golf. If this appears to be a random collection of scenes, it is, only connected by the presence of the girls themselves. Badass girls out for a night on the town.
They dance well, though, with confident, definite movements. They use elbows, arms, and side profiles to their advantage in rowing motions, and the leg work isn't too bad (especially considering what they have to do to stay in frame). They clearly came well-prepared and they bring their A game here.
It's a pretty simple concept overall. Did it entertain me? Well, yes. The camera angles were fun and so were the scenes in the video (like the lollipop abduction scene in the beginning). And I can truthfully say that it's better than some CUBE MVs. Yeah, I can definitely recommend this one.
MV SCORE: 8.6
ALBUM SCORE: 9.0