At the end of September, HOT ISSUE made their first comeback with ICONS. This follows their debut, GRATATA, from April earlier this year. For those who missed their debut, the female group is made up of seven members and are currently under S2 Entertainment.
HOT ISSUE tones down the aggression in ICONS, going with a generic hip-hop sound in this dance track. When I compare their debut and comeback tracks, I cannot help but think that ICONS felt more so like a step backward. It isn’t a massive set back for the group if I was being honest, but it doesn’t really show off much of the group or offer anything original to really talk about. I would say that the rapping and vocal delivery was quite solid throughout, with the pre-chorus being the most vivid part of ICONS for me. But the generic nature of the song doesn’t really help to emphasise that. When the chorus dawns, we are left with an overly generic and forgettable centrepiece that makes you question where the boldness from their debut track had gone. Obviously, I wished that the chorus was more dynamic, as that would have done wonders for ICONS. We do get a peek of some potential dynamism in the final chorus with the extra layer of instrumentation. While that could have benefited from some remoulding as well, I think it is what could have applied to the earlier choruses to give them that additional appeal. A stronger hook would also be helpful, as well, as the one we got was pretty generic and was not enticing.
For the music video, it is one of the many videos that you can watch it once and you can probably describe it reasonably well without ever returning to watch it again as a refresher. It is pretty generic is what I am trying to say, with the closeup and choreography adopted for this video. The sets didn’t offer much assistance in making this video cooler. The outfits were okay. They did bring forth a badass tone, but they aren’t the most stunning outfits ever.
I feel the boldest aspect of the comeback is the performance. While the verses also share the same generic description as the song and the video, the routine in the chorus felt like it went a bit harder than the rest, which I think is a positive outcome to have, at least somewhere in the midst of all the plainness.
Song – 5/10
Music Video – 5/10
Performance – 6/10
Overall Rating – 5.2/10