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K-pop Girl Group aespa Continue Their Pursuit Of Global Domination

The foursome's new mini album is an ambitious expansion of their otherworldly appeal.

POSTEDBYEVAN COLACCHIO

Aespa have returned with their second mini album Girls, and once again, it is clear that they reside in a different realm than their peers.

The group, comprised of members Winter, Giselle, Karina, and Ningning, has been notably recognized since their 2020 debut for consistently pushing the envelope, whether it be through their musical themes, global outreach, or personal identities. 

Each song that the foursome releases is a chapter in their overarching storyline, which sees the members teaming up with their respective AI counterparts to travel the metaverse and defeat Black Mamba, the villain for whom the group’s debut single is named after. In an interview with Good Morning America, Giselle confirmed that Girls marks the end of the first phase of this plot: “We finally finished our metaverse story, which we started off with our debut single, “Black Mamba,” and we’ll defeat the villain. You can look at it as a chapter one.”

The release, which follows last year’s Savage, expands upon the boundary pushing sound that has already become representative of the group despite their relatively new arrival on the K-pop scene. Where their previous releases focused on the electronic, bordering-on-hyperpop signature that they are known for, however, Girls sees the foursome traveling new terrain.

On the title track, the group sings (and raps) atop a rock inspired chorus that gives way to an industrial instrumental break. On “Lingo,” they combine synth with country, a genre virtually unheard of in the K-pop industry. “Life’s Too Short” marks the group's first fully English release, which demonstrates that their global aspirations are not just contained to the metaverse.

Considering the otherworldly lore that the group is centered around, it only makes sense that the music itself is equally high-octane. Similarly, they have exemplified that this music is only part of their expansive appeal; just days before the album’s release, the girls gave a speech at the United Nations’ High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, citing their commitment to ensuring the metaverse has a healthy, sustainable planet to mimic.

With all this considered, it’s hard to predict how they could possibly level up even further with their future releases. We have no doubt, though, that the story is only just beginning.

Girls is out now.

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