Review: COLOR*IZ by IZ*ONE

Here we go again: another idol group born from a Produce series, this time bringing together 48 Korean trainees and 48 members of Japan’s AKB48 and their sister groups. Produce 48 aimed to build a “global girl group”, but in any case only Koreans picked the winners, and the expectations were the same ones for existing Korean idols – and, in the end, only three Japanese contenders made it to the final group. Yet, IZ*ONE was bound to be interesting: you have the Japanese, who are already veterans at this point, and you have the Koreans, who are wet behind the ears, for the most part – and we’re supposed to get both these nuances on their debut. Well, I forgive COLOR*IZ for not doing so. Even I.O.I, the girl group that sprang out of Produce 101, was confused at the beginning – although the sound in this record is more accessible, and “La Vie En Rose”, while quite generic, is better than “Dream Girls”. It seems IZ*ONE are still feeling their way through the situation they are thrust into, making sense of the chemistry – and perhaps the fact that a sizable number of voters aren’t happy with the dropping of some notable contestants. (Well, perhaps that’s an adjustment for us.) They have two years to release albums that show off the members’ charms more (although at this point Choi Ye-na has succeeded) and maybe prove that they deserve the adoration I.O.I got, and Wanna One is getting. [NB]3/5

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