[Review] WJSN goes energy over substance for “Boogie Up”, which works well for summer

I am of the K-pop camp that firmly enjoys artists with a signature sound. WJSN established theirs right off the bat, and have been deepening that spacey, synth-dripped style ever since. Whenever they’ve one off course (the TWICE-esque “Happy” and bubblegum pop “Kiss Me“), their music has suffered. So, when it was announced that they’d be returning with a (non-cosmic) summer track, I wasn’t sure what to think. On one hand, I love a good girl group summer smash. But, I didn’t want another “Happy” either.

Hailing from the same agency that gave us summer queens SISTAR (oh, how I miss them…), WJSN were practically pre-programmed to deliver upbeat summer fare. And though “Boogie Up” nixes their trademark sound and essentially does without a chorus, its infectious groove manages to keep everything enjoyably afloat.

The track filters in with high-energy electro, pulsing on a roller-rink-ready disco beat that quickly becomes the star of the show. The verses follow suit, giving the girls a lighter makeover without totally abandoning the confident vocal style of their best material. The melody is brisk, powered by rhythmic delivery that mirrors an added dose of rhythm guitar as we head toward the pre-chorus. There’s a great build here, culminating in the song’s largely instrumental hook.

“Boogie Up” would have been stronger if given an actual chorus, but its electronic drop is one of the most refreshing examples of this EDM structure we’ve heard in awhile. We do get a touch of added melody just after the climax of “Boogie Up”, but it wouldn’t have been memorable enough to act as a high-quality chorus. Instead, the song focuses on energy over substance. That’s usually a deal-breaker. However, it works wonders here.

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