(G)I-dle’s new album ‘I Never Die’ shows girl group’s resolve to be themselves as tomboys, villains and queens

Natasha Ho
  • This is the K-pop group’s first full-length album, and its seven songs ring with confidence, resilience and emotion
  • Its lead track, ‘Tomboy’, fights back against society’s ridiculous standards for women and argues that being different is something to be proud of
Natasha Ho |

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The music video for ‘Tomboy’, the lead track on (G)I-dle’s new album has already amassed more than 28 million views in the first two days of its release. Photo: YouTube

After months of hiatus, Korean girl group (G)I-dle has made their comeback with their first full-length album “I Never Die”.

Formed by Cube Entertainment, the group debuted in 2018 with their EP “I Am”, and its lead track garnered more than 5.9 million views on YouTube in the first week of its release. (G)I-dle is known for being directly involved in the production process of their music.

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Many tracks on their latest album represent the members’ strength in resisting any opposition that comes their way. But they also take this comeback to showcase their vulnerabilities through slower, emotional songs like Polaroid and Escape.

As a headbanging rock anthem, Tomboy is a perfect lead track. Its lyrics highlight society’s impossible standards for a woman to be a “blond Barbie doll”, and (G)I-dle argues that being different is something to be proud of.

Moreover, Soyeon calls out the expectation for women to take care of men: “Your mom raised you as a prince, but this is queendom, right?” Not only is it a pertinent response, but it is also a clever reference to Queendom, a talent competition show the group took part in.

Never Stop Me is a throwback to 2000s pop-punk, mixing K-pop with Paramore energy. The upbeat chorus illustrates a longing to be free, no matter what anyone else says or does.

The third track, Villain Dies, strikes listeners with its haunting ambience and minor chords in the melody and questions who gets defined as a villain.

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Broken relationships are the focus of tracks four and seven, Already and Liar respectively. Already focuses on the feelings of confusion, sadness and bitterness when a romance comes to an end. Meanwhile, Liar highlights the anger and arguments that come with bad break-ups – as well as the desire to just move on.

On the other hand, the fifth and sixth songs on the album, Polaroid and Escape, turn inward and show the group’s softer side.

Polaroid is a bittersweet, dreamy tune that acknowledges the importance of treasuring memories and smiling even when current times are tough. Escape opens with a slow melody before the energy builds as it hits the chorus. The hopeful chorus promises listeners that the group will always be there as a support system. “I don’t want you to be sad,” they sing. “Don’t endure it alone – just take my hand.”

The album ends with a rap song, My Bag, which features all five members rapping even though they are not all rappers. This hip-hop track has a strong bass accompanied by catchy Korean rhymes.

“I Never Die” is a product of resilience. It proves that (G)I-dle will continue to work hard, jumping through all the hurdles they may face to make music that represents every aspect of who they are.

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