ITZY, ITZY LIKE THAT!
My only criticism of ITZY’s latest EP is that it’s too short. But with just 6 tracks and clocking in at a mere 18 minutes, KILL MY DOUBT is one of their strongest offerings. The girls have had a very busy year: solo magazine pictorials, a new OST for Lia (
One Hundred Love from Doctor Romantic), music festivals and wrapping up their CHECKMATE tour.
An ITZY fan is one of the hardest things a girl can be, especially on twitter. Although I love their voices, it was recently revealed that JYP forces them to sing out of their range and when they don’t sound the way he wants them to, he berates them to the point of tears. (Once I get my hands on him…). People keep insisting they can’t sing when that’s the furthest thing from the truth. Since I also happen to stan the best singers in k-pop - EXO - I can say with full confidence that ITZY are strong vocalists.
Cheshire was a bit polarizing, which I still don’t get. Of course people complained about the high pitched chorus (like Yeji hasn’t been singing in that key ever since debut), but even with my limited musical knowledge, it’s clear to me that it is difficult. NMIXX’s Lily is considered the best vocalist of her generation and even she said
Cheshire was hard to sing.
This song, like the cat it’s named after, is sly and mischievous. “Nothing’s wrong, tight?” they tease. With lyrics like “why so serious/curious?”, “Will you join me?” and the carefree la la la la, it’s a cheeky invitation to romance. Forget logic, don’t think too hard, we’re just having fun. It’s a song only girls in their early 20s can sing, because a geriatric like me demands lifelong commitment or nothing.
The EP also boasts
Snowy which samples Fur Elise, what Apple Music describes as “haunted jewelry box sounds.” Moody, icy brilliance.
Freaky is another gem where Yeji and Lia show off some impressive falsettos. Lia took charge of vocal direction in the studio; she was very passionate about this song. The harmonization is also top tier. I don’t think the English single
Boys Like You is out of place. It might be the brightest song and not related to the other three, but that’s what makes Cheshire
From there wintry elegance melts into a vibrant summer.
CAKE is fantastic, a return to the ITZY sound everyone was complaining they had abandoned. It is
ICY 2.0, the most quintessential k-pop song released this year. It’s just so fun and catchy. There’s a lot going on, but after a second listen it’s less overwhelming. It’s non-stop, go go go with very little pauses, but who cares? We don’t need a lull in summer fun. But the little switches make the song a lot more layered.
Bet On Me opens KILL MY DOUBT. It’s a song about struggling with self doubt and also alludes to the severe hate they’ve endured over the past two years. It’s not a downer though. I also love the instrumental. Lia’s vocals really shine. It’s not the first time ITZY have laid their insecurities bare, nor the first time where they’ve resolved to overcome. Their confidence is less aggressive but still resolute.
None of My Business is a languid summery tune, a blissful diss track to some ex. Ryujin’s flow is so killer and her voice is clear and appealingly sweet. Lia sounds excellent on her rap verse too, while Yeji’s has this quick delivery that I’m just obsessed with. I like that they’ve returned to their
DALLA DALLA roots with the small shout in the song’s chorus.
My and Yuna’s favorite track is
Bratty. From that beat drop in the beginning to the tinkling beats, it’s basically
Freaky’s peppier summer twin.
Psychic Lover is the crowd pleaser, a retro infused bubblegum bop. It’s wrapped up in a glittery bow, a soundtrack to Usagi Tsukino’s adventures.
Kill Shot is the typical favorite, the one everyone says should’ve been the title. Although it’s the only track that matches the album concept, it’s not a bouncy summer anthem like
CAKE. It’s perfectly fine as a b-side, but it’s also extraordinarily deft in both production and vocals.
Kill My Doubt has no skips and its variety of sounds show off the group’s flair for experimentation. It fits in perfectly as the third chapter following CHECKMATE and Cheshire. As their slogan “All in us” attests, they really can do it all.