After a year of global growth that included their first top 10 album on the Billboard 200, ITZY take their next step to larger pop prominence with the release of their first original English single “Boys Like You.”
Like many of ITZY’s K-pop singles, the new pop track is an empowerment anthem. This time, the girls realize their worth and refuse to take back a two-timing boyfriend with a mix of sassy, catchy rap rhymes (“Boy, gonna diss me? Boy, I’m so pissed/ Boy, gonna miss me/ Boy, you are dismissed”) and a smooth, kiss-off hook sung by Chaeryeong (who croons, “I don’t fall for boys like you” in the most addictive part of the track). True to ITZY’s sound in singles like “Sneakers” or “Wannabe,” the new track boasts an overall playful listening experience while still packing a punch with the group’s spunky personality and clever ad-libs.
Released right in time for the upcoming Halloween holiday, the accompanying music video sees Chaeryeong, Yeji, Lia, Ryujin and Yuna together at a costume party and soon learning the same guy has scammed all five members. After cartoonish attempts to take one another down in the name of love, ITZY realize they’re better together and throw their own party without their cheating ex.
While not explicitly stated by the artist or label, “Boys Like You” seems to mark the latest release by a K-pop act directly targeting the U.S. market with an original English single. ITZY’s latest move feels similar to TWICE (label mates with ITZY on both the Korean side at JYP Entertainment and U.S. side with Republic Records), who released their crossover track “The Feels” and scored their first entry on the Hot 100 and performed across American morning and late-night talk shows. Even with the language switch-up, “The Feels” stood out for how closely it connected to TWICE’s K-pop singles, with “Boys Like You” mostly in line with ITZY’s past collection of punchy, pop anthems that appeal to both young audiences and more mature listeners.
“Boys Like You” is the pre-release single ahead of a new project slated for later this year. But the new music will come after the U.S. leg of ITZY’s ‘Checkmate 1st World Tour’ which kicks off in Los Angeles on Oct. 26.
Until then, watch the new “Boys Like You” music video: