[Review] RIIZE successfully complete their 2015 SHINee era with “Boom Boom Bass”

While I wasn’t immediately enamored with RIIZE‘s initial singles output, the potential was always there as they made clear early they were going evoke second generation boy group vibes, complete with dance-pop and addictive melodies. Their previous single, “Impossible”, got their roll-out off to an amazing start and “Boom Boom Bass” makes for a quality follow-up effort.


I hate to do this to them and continue to make comps to their company seniors, but it seems impossible to avoid the comparisons of “View” to “Impossible” and now “Married To The Music” to “Boom Boom Bass” from SHINee’s 2015 rollout. They’ve tailored them to modern tastes — for better or worse — and given those two singles are among my favorite in boy group history it was always going to be difficult to live up to those kinds of expectations, but RIIZE miraculously do well here.

The driving beat and funky bassline powers this song for the duration, providing foot-tapping vibes as its momentum surges forward. At times the loop felt like an interpolation of Michael Jackson‘s “Thriller” that was given a bright idol sheen, and while I’m normally not invested in K-pop lyrics, RIIZE utilize theirs nicely here by making the track about connecting through music and letting the beat take over as track itself does exactly that.

The rhythmic chorus arrives suddenly, delivering an addictive melody and refrain, though personally I’d have preferred if the guitar work was more prominent. Going back to the lyrics, I felt like literally telling the listener where the song’s notes were going was clever, and since “boom-ba-doom, boom, boom, bass” was used more as a post-chorus accentuation rather than the core melody, it worked for me fine enough.

As a collective, RIIZE have pleasant and smooth vocals, plenty capable to carry them through a breezy song like this. I still have difficulty distinguishing them, and there’s no immediate standout, but maybe that’s the point for recent gen songs. Either way the background vocals make everything seem a bit more meaty and they blend nicely, while the celebratory mood as everybody joins in for the finale is a perfect sendoff.


Either way, “Boom Boom Bass” is an intensely groovy track that has grown on me on repeat listens. There are a lot of solid songs that feature funky, rhythmic cores, but what sets this apart was the complexity to the production and the feeling like the track evolves until the finish line arrives rather than just settling in and repeating. Musically at least, 2024 is shaping up to be a great year for RIIZE, and it should be interesting what they have lined up next.


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