TWICE are about to grace us with their presence, and one can almost feel the world right itself on its own. As they gear up toe release their third Korean full-length album ‘Formula Of Love: O+T=<3’, it is hard to believe how far TWICE have come in the six years they have been active in the K-pop industry. However, few acts have displayed such flexibility and growth as TWICE.
- READ MORE: TWICE talk new mini-album ‘Taste Of Love’, its tough recording process and their favourite songs to perform
The nine-member groups’s first few releases – from the viral ‘Likey’ to the pastel-hued ‘Knock Knock’ – while wildly successful, risked pigeonholing them into the mould of conventional bubblegum pop. And while that would have been the expected safer route, TWICE have proved that if there is any act capable of dexterously doing a complete roundabout on concepts while still staying true to who they are, it’s them. Over the years, as their music has gone from exploring teeny-bopper romance to the more mature complexities of love, we’ve seen them grow into confident women who look inwards to find value and strength.
As TWICE come off of one of their most successful years ever – considering the release of their first English-language single ‘The Feels’ and the raving success of their mini-album ‘Taste Of Love’, which peaked at Number Six on the Billboard 200 chart (their highest till date) – we look back on their Korean discography and rank the songs, however blasphemous that may be, in order of greatness.
Off their debut EP, ‘Truth’ comes in rumbling and guns ablaze, but doesn’t quite hit the sweet spot of the coy, hard-to-get vibe that TWICE seem to be aiming for on the song, something which they – as we very well know – have perfected over the course of their career.
98‘Precious Love’ (2016)
Is that the melody loop from ‘TT’ we hear at the beginning of this track, or doth my ears deceive me? Despite the strong start to the track, however, the song gets lost in its characteristically pop fervour, failing to stand out on an otherwise strong EP.
97‘Do It Again’ (2015)
While we’re used to TWICE peppering their pop-leaning work with hip-hop, this one does fall on the weaker end of their output. While the sonic arrangement reminiscent of the girl-crush concept circa late 2010s feels familiar, it fails to capture interest for too long.
96‘Missing U’ (2017)
Sadly, one of the rare times where TWICE fumble – while it’s meant to be a peppy breakup song, ‘Missing U’ seems to fall short of the mark in terms of sincerity and ingenuity.
95‘Ding Dong’ (2017)
What is meant to be a lighthearted, catchy number accentuated by the use of the sound effects that love sets off inside us falls prey to an outdated and overused arrangement, making it no different from a generic pop song. Oh well, one can’t always hit the nail on the head every time.
Sadly, one of the more forgettable songs from an album that otherwise can be considered a turning point in TWICE’s discography. While the EDM-inspired ‘Sunset’ fits easily into the soundtrack of summer, it fails to add any sonic or lyrical brevity to the overall ethos of ‘Yes Or Yes’.
93‘Eye Eye Eyes’ (2017)
Another one of TWICE’s tracks which, despite keeping the momentum going, fails to be memorable beyond the first listen.
92‘Only You’ (2017)
The fervour of love fizzles out a little on ‘Only You’, which becomes the weakest B-side on ‘Signal’ despite the high-energy arrangement.
While TWICE’s sonic experiments are more than welcome, this one – a Latin-inspired pop track – failed to capture for too long. Even the enticing lyrics couldn’t distract from the formulaic arrangement on the song, constantly making it feel as if a powerhouse group such as TWICE was being underutilized.
90‘Tuk Tok’ (2016)
Similar to ‘Firework’, this cut from ‘Page Two’ is an ambitious but ultimately confusing mix of different genres and sounds, ranging from soul to trap and everything in between. Although the high notes from Jihyo are still very satisfying.
89‘Trick it’ (2019)
While an addictive, engaging song on an equally strong album, ‘Trick It’ does little for the momentum kicked off by ‘Feel Special’ conceptually. The confidence, while alluring, feels misplaced when compared to the other tracks, making it one of their weaker offerings.
Carrying forward the flag of the cheerleading aesthetic we see on ‘Cheer Up’ and ‘Touchdown’, ‘Dejavu’ brings a frenetic urgency to the act of approaching someone, even if it does fall flat in certain places.
87‘Look At Me’ (2017)
While the frenetic loops of “Look at me, look at me” during the chorus are enough to capture one’s attention, the rest of ‘Look At Me’ fails to commit to memory in terms of lyrics or sound, making it one of TWICE’s forgettable songs.
86‘Don’t Give Up’ (2017)
Lyrically, ‘Don’t Give Up’ reads as an uplifting anthem of confidence and self-love, telling us to paint the skies with our own colors and learn to look at ourselves as the “brightest and prettiest thing in the world”. The song’s optimism, however, does not translate into music – despite being well-meaning, the track stumbles due to a scattered, erratic arrangement.
While the track – which sonically makes a perfect fit for the soundtrack of a Clueless-esque girls’ flick – starts off strong on a rock-leaning riff, the fever dissolves by the time one gets to the chorus, making what could have been an anthemic number, underwhelming.
84‘Say You Love Me’ (2018)
A departure from their previous releases, ‘Say You Love Me’ was a breath of fresh air sonically, with the EDM influences imparting a charming buoyancy to the track. Despite this, the track left something to be desired, never quite reaching the crescendo promised.
83‘My Headphones On’ (2016)
‘My Headphones On’ is what happens when you mix a catchy, anthemic chorus with clunky verses. But at least Jihyo comes to save the day during the bridge with her heavenly vocals: “Nothing gets me down / You can’t hurt me now / Now you’ve become a stranger to me.”
82‘1 To 10’ (2016)
We all know that the honeymoon phase of love eventually fades away, but damn do TWICE make it feel as giddy in song as it does in real life. This soft, light-hearted pop number may be the soundtrack to the first few days of getting to know someone, but by the time you’re done, you feel you’ve fallen deeper into TWICE.
81‘Three Times A Day’ (2017)
Relationships are hard work, but TWICE are here to give you a step-by-step breakdown of what you need to do. Diverging from their usual pop material, ‘Three Times A Day’ presents wins in its refrained approach, with the spaces and pacing making it seem like the group is expecting an answer.
80‘Hold Me Tight’ (2017)
While the energy on its predecessor ‘Only You’ seems to dissipate into the nothingness – resulting in a promising track falling flat – ‘Hold Me Tight’ successfully contains it and turns it into a song worthy of multiple listens. As the members of TWICE take matters into their own hands,the excitement takes on a contagious note, giving us one of their more memorable B-side tracks.
79‘Candy Boy’ (2015)
To the steady beat of a marching band, the song comes brimming with confidence and youthful charm, making it a classic TWICE track. What makes it even better is TWICE delivering powerful high notes with ferocious intensity right off the gate – this one never gets old.
78‘Someone Like Me’ (2017)
Coming off of their mini-album ‘Signal’, ‘Someone Like Me’ is another instance where the TWICE shine in the united power of their vocals. It may be comparatively restrained and less intense than others on the album, but the gentle crooning of “someone like me” stays with you long after it’s ended.
77‘Say Yes’ (2018)
“I like your familiar feeling, I like your awkward way of talking / How about you, what about me? Answer me. Say yes,” sing TWICE on the delightful acoustic arrangement on ‘Say Yes’. Slow and innocent in its charm, ‘Say Yes’ makes for an easy listen for the moments you need a little bit of courage.
76‘Yes Or Yes’ (2018)
While we were all about this more confident, cooler style that TWICE brought to life, ‘Yes Or Yes’ felt underwhelming compared to its counterpart ‘What Is Love?’, released in the same year. The conversations around consent that the track sparked notwithstanding, ‘Yes Or Yes’ also presented a conceptual disconnect with its predecessor in its approach, making this one of TWICE’s more forgettable title tracks.
Equipped with rich instrumentation and bolstered by solid vocals, ‘LALALA’ separated itself from TWICE’s other releases by virtue of focusing on oneself, rather than someone else. As the members talked about barrelling towards what they want until “space’s end”, we got glimpses of the self-assured women who would blow our minds away on ‘Feel Special’, and what a sight it was!
This youthful, brass-heavy song certainly wouldn’t work if TWICE released it now, but back when the group were still fresh K-pop ingénues, this self-confident song about being the centre of attention and affection from suitors everywhere certainly hit the spot.
73‘Young & Wild’ (2018)
If ‘LALALA’ gave us a peak at the self-assured power-women TWICE would grow into on their later releases, ‘Young & Wild’ was probably the most obvious retrospective clue. Once again, TWICE go from an externally focused approach to a more introspective concept, where they talk making the most of their youth with no care for what anyone else thinks. ‘Young & Wild’ goes down as one of their most uncharacteristic, yet beloved tracks.
Despite its innocent charm and the endearing portrayal of dropping hints – literally turning them into signals to be sent into outer space – ‘Signal’ sits at the weaker end of TWICE’s title tracks. While it does make for an engaging listen, the track pales in comparison to the more mature B-sides on the mini-album, taking away from an otherwise strong release.
71‘After Moon’ (2018)
For an act that has perfected the art of putting love into words, it is surprising how TWICE find ways to turn an otherwise banal conversation on its head simply through lyrical genius. While it’s not the most flashy song on ‘Yes Or Yes’, ‘After Moon’ stands out in its simplicity. Comparing the intermittent meeting of star-crossed lovers to the time of dawn – when the sun and moon rest in the same sky – TWICE show that underneath the veneer of rose-colored lenses is an act capable of harnessing powerful emotions.
On the surface, a song titled ‘Hot’ risks falling prey to vanity and performative empowerment. Looked at in the context of ‘Fancy You’, however, ‘Hot’ becomes an anthem of confidence and positivity, where we define what makes us attractive. The rest of the world just falls in line.
69‘One In A Million’ (2016)
This acoustic guitar-driven ‘Twicecoaster: Lane 1’ cut is named after TWICE’s signature introductory greeting, and it does all the right things to pull at the heartstrings of ONCEs everywhere. With its touching lyrics, which describe fans as people who are “one in a million“, to the group’s sweet vocals, this will live on for years to come.
68‘Turn It Up’ (2019)
Taking forward the confidence of ‘Fancy’, ‘Turn It Up’ gives us a deeper look at the reinvented versions of TWICE. Instead of letting things flow, the members of TWICE take the reins and set their own pace. “I’ll wake up the moon and make you glow with the light,” they sing, and you never want this night to end.
67‘Going Crazy’ (2015)
Was this one of the first previews we got before summer came to be known as the ‘season of TWICE’? The cool, heady vibe of the ‘Going Crazy’ complements the longing and push-and-pull of wanting your crush to pay attention to you (even if there is big ‘notice me Senpai’ energy in some places).
Or, as we call it, the countdown to falling in love with TWICE. Carrying forward the flame of the cheerleading aesthetic from ‘Cheer Up’, the effect of ‘Touchdown’ is akin to a magic spell – as the group counts down to one, you lose yourself in the beats and find yourself being taken over by TWICE.
65‘Like A Fool’ (2015)
While the track sits on the simpler end of the TWICE discography, it is no less effective. On ‘Like A Fool’, TWICE demonstrate how they are exceptional at taking ordinary emotions and elevating them to something memorable – they’re fools for their object of affection, but we are fools for them.
64‘Merry & Happy’ (2017)
Come December, guess what we’ll be playing?
63‘Jelly Jelly’ (2016)
Has there ever been a more perfect B-side? (Don’t answer that.) Usually, the monster of jealousy doesn’t come seeped in preppy beats and coordinated cheerleader claps, but this one sticks to you like it’s candy namesake, leaving us wanting for more.
If there is one thing TWICE do best, it’s put words to the jumble of emotions that love often is. ‘PIT-A-PAT’ emerges as a triumphant achievement in that aspect, putting the exciting, nerve-wracking feeling of trying to make your crush notice you, but keeping yourself at just enough distance to not be obvious – haven’t we all felt this one way or another?
61‘Next Page’ (2016)
If ‘PIT-A-PAT’ puts the excitement of having a crush into words, ‘Next Page’ takes it – as the name suggests – to the next level, where we finally reckon with the possibility of confessing. The song falls neatly into line based on concept alone, starting off with steady, low tones that seem like the group is gearing up for something big, before dissolving into what is a loud, liberating chorus – the joy of finally coming clean about how you feel.
The relationship between artists and fans can often feel one-sided, but TWICE send a sweet reminder of their constant presence through ‘21:29’. Written as thanks to their fans for sending them letters, the soft track comes wrapped in assurances of remembrance and gratitude, making one feel as if they’re the only one being addressed.
Bringing the powerful high of ‘Feel Special’ to a close is the smooth, self-assured ‘Breakthrough’. ‘Breakthrough’ is an uncharacteristic track for TWICE in its straightforward display of determination, giving us the feeling that everything we’ve seen them do until that point had just been the beginning, and we may not ready for the day when they become the “amazing, shining versions” of themselves.
Like its namesake that keeps us going, the frenetic pace of ‘Oxygen’ pulls us in and keeps us hanging on till the last line, binding us in the euphoria of finding your one and only love. Between its staccato beats and loops of the members vocals, the track weaves a spellbinding aura, making the last beat feel like the release of a breath long held.
57‘Make Me Go’ (2020)
Femme Fatale, thy name is ‘Make Me Go’. On an album that was probably TWICE’s most mature take on the game of love yet, ‘Femme Fatale’ and its sexy allure became the last satisfying piece of an enchanting puzzle. Penned by Nayeon, the track was evidently inspired by the portrayal of female assassins in movies. All we have to say is – give us the Ocean’s Thirteen concept we deserve!
56‘Stuck In My Head’ (2019)
Much like its title suggest, this sound will be “stuck in your head” for hours on end. Like how the mini-album its from marked a notable change in style for TWICE, ‘Stuck In My Head’ presents a mature, confident version of the nine-member group, ready to take love head on.
55‘Sweet Summer Day’ (2020)
Even the most badass women need a bit of downtime to themselves, and, well, TWICE reinvented badass on ‘More & More’. It makes sense, then, that they closed out the album ‘Eyes Wide Open’ on the delightful ‘Sweet Summer Day’, the proverbial act of letting their hair down after a long day and breaking free of responsibilities to just be themselves.
Is it the broken loops of “wow” or the very relatable descriptions of having a crush (but not actually wanting your crush to know that) that make ‘Wow’ so good? We may never find out, but we sure will keep coming back to this bouncy delight again and again.
Another instance where TWICE show how excellent they are at balancing the blunt, straightforward approach with their classic playful teasing, ‘FFW’ stands as a triumph during the act’s nascent years, even if it does falter in its scattered sonic arrangement.
52‘Love Line’ (2017)
While ‘Love Line’ isn’t TWICE’s most memorable track, its simplicity and wholesome charm makes it one to go back to.. “I secretly think about you all day, I wanna walk with you,” the group sing on the track, a reminder of all the days when we were just figuring out what love meant.
51‘Do What We Like’ (2020)
TWICE deliver a dreamy, enchanting number about overcoming your demons with the help and support of someone you love. Although it pales in comparison to their more introspective tracks, the simmering energy on this one does make us do a double take.
Oh, look! A song about TWICE themselves. It might sound cheesy, but the confident energy on ‘Queen’ serves as a tribute to modern women who kick ass and take names, while staying true to who they are. Are we putting this on everytime we get ready to hit the town? Maybe.
49‘Shot Clock’ (2020)
Unfortunately, while the overall output of ‘Eyes Wide Open’ was impressive, ‘Shot Clock’ turned out to be the rare miss. The callback to TWICE’s early circa cheerleading era feels lost musically on the record. Coupled with what seems like superficial lyrics about always moving forward, the end result is scattered.
48‘Ice Cream’ (2017)
Do we think food metaphors are a tad bit overused in K-pop? Yes. Does it stop us from singing to ourselves “Melt me, sweeter than ice cream”? No.
47‘Heart Shaker’ (2017)
Carrying the rose-scented, vibrant extravaganza of ‘Knock Knock’ forward, ‘Heart Shaker’ goes down as another classic TWICE track in their discography – if only for the catchy chorus and the viral dance step.
46‘Get Loud’ (2019)
If there is any doubt that TWICE came about swinging and guns blazing on ‘Feel Special’, ‘Get Loud’ will put those to rest right away. Probably their starkest departure from the shy, wide-eyed women we saw in their nascent years, ‘Get Loud’ is a proud declaration to their critics – there might have been a time when they would have shied away from “harsh words’’ and “dangerous jokes’, but those days are long past them. They ‘Get Loud’ and proud on this one, and we are all here for it!
Glad to know TWICE feel the same urge to escape everyday life as us, or so ‘Chillax’ says. While the track does fall into the traps of a regular summer anthem, some days – like the ones described in ‘Chillax’ – are better enjoyed without overthinking.
Sometimes, blinded by the glamour that TWICE bring with every release, we make the mistake of forgetting how adept they are at passing off vulnerability as anything but. ‘24/7’ comes as a welcome reminder that to pass TWICE off as “just another bubblegum” act would be a mistake – as the group talk about the monotony of life and not wanting to deal with just another day yet, you’re almost thankful for the break their levity brings to the burden of life.
This might not be Brave Girls’ viral hit of the same name, but it’s still a bop nonetheless. What starts as a controlled, restrained track talking about a rollercoaster of emotions slowly climbs in intensity, until it dissipates into a firework display of wild fervour. While the repetitive loops of “Shaky shaky shaky, bing bing bing” might seem nonsensical, it almost seems as if the need to let off steam manifests primarily as words that don’t necessarily need to have meaning.
42‘Shot Thru The Heart’ (2018)
Penned by Momo, Sana and Mina, ‘Shot Thru The Heart’ dives deep into the game of push-and-pull, before something (or someone) hooks you in. Despite the excitement of the lyrics, the track leaves much to be desired and becomes repetitive sooner than one would like.
Too often, the high of falling in love for the first time takes precedence over the more boring aspects of it – you know, when you actually have to stick it out and make it work. TWICE, however, are not shying away from the effort love takes, thus resulting in ‘Believer’ – a sultry, yet determined declaration that they may “laugh and run and fall a few times”, but they will always come out stronger.
40‘Girls Like Us’ (2019)
If the ’90s-adjacent hip-hop beat was not enough to pull you in, the riveting chorus will do the job. Featuring Jihyo at the lyrical helm, ‘Girls Like Us’ is an uncharacteristically vulnerable song for TWICE. Hidden under the soaring vocals is a deep-seated fear of not being able to fulfill your dreams, but TWICE are still choosing to run rather than give up.
39‘Bring It Back’ (2020)
If ‘Missing U’ was the breakup song that didn’t quite hit the mark, ‘Bring It Back’ makes up for it and then some more. Even in subject matter, ‘Bring It Back’ is more introspective – instead of wanting to play a game of push-and-pull, ‘Bring It Back’ turns the focus inwards and TWICE rebuild themselves piece by piece. It’s an aspect of love that they don’t talk about nearly enough, resulting in a breath of fresh air for fans.
“I’ve been running around without a break / I’m in a hurry / I don’t want to look weak / All I have in my eyes is tears and It’s hidden deep inside,”’ sing TWICE on ‘Shadow’. Doing a masterful job of hiding vulnerability underneath levity, ‘Shadow’ comes as a brilliant dark horse on the ‘More & More’ album, talking about stopping and enjoying the moment before the cruel light of day takes you again, becoming one of TWICE’s strongest tracks in its restrained intensity.
It’s the year of our lord 2021 and we have left the food metaphors behind. Or have we? Look us in the eye and tell us that you won’t absolutely join in to TWICE’s crooning of “Ttalgi”’ on ‘Strawberry’. No human can resist the endearing charm of this chorus.
While all of TWICE’s releases have a special place in our hearts, it’s the ones with the members at the helm that truly give us a glimpse at just how multifaceted the act is. ‘Rainbow’ falls easily in that category, with its desire of wanting to not be stereotyped taking on a more personal, deeper meaning thanks to lyrics written by Nayeon,. When she tells us, “You’re worth it, trust yourself”, it’s as much of an assurance to herself as it is to us, pitting ‘Rainbow’ as one of TWICE’s more inspiring tracks.
35‘Go Hard’ (2021)
While TWICE’s ‘Eyes Wide Open’ served us one self-love banger after another, this one has a soft corner in our hearts. “Even if painful words stab me and hurt me, you make me feel special”, say TWICE in a direct callback to ‘Feel Special’, the era that – in more ways than one – became the stepping stone for their reinvention and growth. Just for that, we give this an A.
34‘Best Thing I Ever Did’ (2018)
While we may not have patience with the standard issue covers of Christmas tracks that become a staple when December comes around, we are certainly here for offerings like ‘Best Thing I Ever Did’, which infuse the bleak, chilly season with the warmth of affection and hot cocoa. The delightful track turns a characteristic lonely season into one of companionship and love, leaving you wondering whether this is the true magic in the air they talk about.
33‘Say Something’ (2020)
In a year dominated by the revival of retro, one thing that we were looking forward to – and did not nearly get enough of – was the modern reinterpretation of city pop. TWICE may have taken a comparatively classic and generic route on ‘Say Something’, but the end result doesn’t make the song any less charming in its synth-laden magic.
32‘Sweet Talker’ (2018)
As TWICE matured in both their careers and artistry, we were treated to B-sides such as ‘Sweet Talker’, which combined the confidence and fun of knowing exactly what a bad boy’s empty words mean with an atmospheric charm befitting Grease. Drawing on retro and pop influences and featuring lyrics by Jeongyeon and Chaeyong, ‘Sweet Talker’ is one to add to your “Best Of” lists.
31‘Be As One (Korean Version)’ (2018)
Reassurance comes wrapped in the soft voices of TWICE, as they leave us with promises of brighter days to come. Come to this one on the hard days, folks.
30‘You In My Heart’ (2017)
If there is one thing we love about TWICE, it’s how they excel at making one feel like the only person in the world. The easy-going, charming ‘You In My Heart’ is a brilliant demonstration of the same – as the group talks about the world being reflected in their eyes and makes promises of never leaving us alone, you end up believing that you share this moment with them and only them.
29‘Behind The Mask’ (2020)
It doesn’t take long for feelings to stagnate, or for friends to become strangers – what hurts more is being unaware of when it happened and finding yourself in the aftermath anyway. Such is the tragic turn of events that TWICE tackle on ‘Behind The Mask’, giving us an emotional, heart wrenching account of being left behind, wrapped up in the gentle salve of their voices.
28‘Handle It’ (2020)
On an album full of one powerful track after another, ‘Handle It’ becomes a solid favorite, thanks to the vulnerability it so delightfully captures. You may show a different side of yourself to the world, but the one you keep close to your heart is hurting and scabbed, and TWICE understand that better than anyone else.
For an act that has perfected the art of capturing the exhilarating sensation of first love through addictive earworms, ‘Turtle’ emerges as their most charming outlier. Featuring simple acoustic arrangements, the song gets more comforting with each consecutive listen, much as the relationship they describe in the lyrics.
If the rosy-themed, pop-culture-overdose of ‘What Is Love?’ – off the same mini-album as ‘Ho!’ – was a delightful walk down memory lane, ‘Ho!’ was one of the tracks that made us sit up and realize TWICE’s strength in committing to a concept. While ‘What Is Love?’ as a whole comes seeped in influences of Old Hollywood-style musical numbers, nowhere is it sonically clearer than on ‘Ho!’, crafted to perfection with a heady beat and the group’s vocals.
25‘Jaljayo Good Night’ (2017)
Sometimes, at the end of a long, tiring day, all you need is a gentle caress from a loving hand, and the assurance that everything will be alright. While our favorite artists may not be able to do that, TWICE gave us the next best thing – the simple, alluring ‘Jaljayo Good Night’. Throughout its four minute, the song seems to flow through the cracks that appear in our otherwise tough exteriors, filling them with warmth. As the group lulls us to sleep with the promise of the next day being better, a comfort settles inside – maybe they’re right.
24‘Feel Special’ (2019)
If ‘Fancy You’ was TWICE’s experimental foray into vulnerability and self-confidence, ‘Feel Special’ was its bombastic, spectacular successor. The cherry on top was the simmering, glittering extravaganza of ‘Feel Special’, the eponymous title track and a snazzy tribute to all the fans who turned the bad days into good ones. It’s not often in K-pop that releases truly feel as if we’re looking in on a private, special relationship between a fan and the artist from the outside, but ‘Feel Special’ truly spelled a magic that only TWICE and their ONCEs understood.
23‘More & More’ (2020)
One of the most satisfactory things about following TWICE and their evolution has to do with their conscious transformation of love through their music – where their earlier releases were the epitome of teeny-bopper romance, later ones such as ‘More & More’ add a more complex, mature angle to it, throwing in elements of desire and want that govern the baser instincts of falling for someone. ‘More & More’ thus emerges as one of their more powerful tracks, if only for throwing into context the graph of TWICE’s growth.
22‘Don’t Call Me Again’ (2020)
If ‘More & More’ was the proverbial growing up for TWICE conceptually, ‘Don’t Call Me Again’ is the last brick in this reinforced foundation. Even base comparisons with some of its predecessors paint a more cohesive picture that goes beyond just sonic arrangement – where on ‘Three Times A Day’, the anger of being slighted was tempered by the fear of not wanting to let go of a partner, ‘Don’t Call Me Again’ makes none of those concessions. Here, backed by soaring trumpets and led by confident vocals, TWICE make their stand clear – if you clean your act up, don’t call them again.
21‘First Time’ (2021)
Taking the dizzying intensity of its predecessor ‘Alcohol-Free’ one step further, the nervous, yet exhilarating energy on ‘First Time’ makes it a perfect for ‘Taste of Love’. On an album diving into the first transactions with a more mature outlook on attraction, the sultry arrangement on ‘First Time’ only makes us more excited for what is to come.
20‘Baby Blue Love’ (2021)
While the iconic ‘I Can’t Stop Me’ remains their best exploration of the retro, disco sound, ‘Baby Blue Love’ comes a close second. Capturing the magic of a “deep summer night”, ‘Baby Blue Love’ makes for an easy, groovy listen, quite like the sparks of flirting it is supposed to capture.
So, you promised yourself that you won’t fall for the traps of another man again, yet here you are. Somehow, though, it doesn’t feel as difficult as it seems, especially if you’ve got this fun pop offering to back you up. TWICE may fear being hurt by giving love a second chance, but they’re ready to give it a shot with the right person.
18‘Knock Knock’ (2017)
Sitting in 2021, the lighthearted, affectionate ‘Knock Knock’ seems eons away from the TWICE of today, both conceptually and musically. That does not make it any less of a classic, though – TWICE knock, knocked their way into hearts through this bouncy, rhythmic anthem, and you can pry our love for this out of our cold, dead hands.
Let it be known that in this house, we acknowledge and respect the impact of ‘Likey’. The countless challenges and covers the song spawned notwithstanding, ‘Likey’ is TWICE at their innocent, charming, bubbly best, elevating a modern vapid term to something fun and endearing like they always do.
16‘Depend On You’ (2020)
Penned by Nayeon, ‘Depend On You’ is another uplifting track that comes as a love-letter to the group’s fans. In a year where COVID snuffed out numerous lights of hope, TWICE’s ‘Depend On You’ became the enduring flame that resisted and pulled through.
Name a better conceptual one-eighty, we’ll wait. Come summer of 2019, TWICE took us all by surprise – gone with the starry-eyed babes of ‘What Is Love?’ or the playful coyness ‘Cheer Up’. This TWICE knew what they wanted, and they weren’t afraid to say it out loud – and how in the world could we ever say no?
If ‘Fancy You’ was TWICE’s foray into the mature aspect of love (while still maintaining the coyness), it’s right to say that ‘Conversation’ – and the entirety of ‘Taste Of Love’ – blows all pretenses out of the park and strips attraction down to its bare essentials. Sometimes, you want to have “a little less conversation”. Make of that what you will, but one thing is for sure, ‘Conversation’ is a new look on TWICE and we sure as hell love it.
If sultry summer romances had a soundtrack, ‘Alcohol-Free’ would find a place right in the moments where you meet the love of your life (or two months) on the beaches of Spain. Even if you’re enjoying the track from the comfort of home, however, such is the magic of TWICE that the heady, intoxicating charm of ‘Alcohol-Free’ leaves one grooving and wishing for a pool party of their own. In a year that gave us little comfort, the track became a comforting companion.
12‘Hell In Heaven’ (2020)
Ah yes, the third rung of the holy trinity comprising ‘Scandal’ and ‘Conversation’. Or, dare we say, their darker counterpart? While ‘Scandal’ and ‘Conversation’ were still rooted in the desires of a torrential romance, ‘Hell in Heaven’ abandons all inhibitions of any sort. Primal, frantic, dangerous and seductive, it is tracks like ‘Hell in Heaven’ that constantly remind us to not underestimate TWICE as starry-eyed babes.
11‘Cry For Me’ (2020)
Released at the very end of 2020 after a show-stopping performance at the Mnet Asia Music Awards, ‘Cry For Me’ always deserved much more than its status as a non-album single that’s never received an official music video. This bitter, revenge-fueled anthem, driven by dramatic strings and a four-on-the-floor beat, perfectly depicts the push and pull of a toxic relationship, and how a “bad boy” can turn a good girl “mad”. Definitely solid post-breakup material.
10‘Up No More’ (2020)
Over the years, as TWICE have let us deeper into their artistry, they’ve potted gems such as ‘Up No More’ along the way. Penned by Jihyo, the track deals with the aftermath of insomnia and wanting to escape the world through the sweet release of slumber. As if in tandem, the track moves at a frantic pace, overwhelming in places and almost claustrophobic in others. It’s one of the few times we delve into a darker side of TWICE, pegging this as one of their more innovative releases.
9‘The Feels’ (2021)
Possibly the best part about ‘The Feels’ – which, both visually and conceptually, seems like a direct call-back to the group’s nascent era exploration of first crushes and love – is how obviously it contrasts TWICE’s growth against their earlier work.
Shyness has been replaced by a quiet confidence, and even coquettishness comes seeped in shrewd calculation that never lets the heart overpower the head. What it creates is a magical synergy of modern, mature attraction while still enjoying the moment and the feeling. This may have been TWICE’s first foray into the West, but if it is any indication, the group is pulling out all the stops.
8‘Cheer Up’ (2016)
Bright, colourful and all around fun, but still kind of badass, ‘Cheer Up’ is that song – and we all know it. It might have only been TWICE’s second single, but it solidified their positions as one of the top K-pop girl groups, what with the song being the best-performing song of 2016 on the Gaon Digital Chart. Plus, Sana’s “Shy, shy, shy” will always be iconic.
And as the cherry on top, the music video for ‘Cheer Up’ was TWICE’s first foray into their hyper-pop culture referencing style that would return in ‘TT’ and ‘What Is Love?’, with inspirations here ranging from genre-changing classic Scream to Wong Kar-wai’s iconic Chungking Express.
7‘Love Foolish’ (2019)
‘Like A Fool’, meet your more confident, sultrier cousin – the very one you told us not to worry about. While the titles of the two tracks may sound similar, the arrangement is anything but. Doing a complete roundabout from the dew-tinted colors of their previous releases, ‘Love Foolish’ is the mature, assertive track that not just cements TWICE as one of the most expansive acts in K-pop but also showcases the trajectory of their growth. As it simmers with growing intensity, we realize that we’re looking at an act now fully assured in their vision and future, making this one of TWICE’s best tracks by far.
TWICE combine the playfulness of being in a “flirtationship” with a music video filled to the brim with the occultish charm of Halloween (a feat they successfully repeated later on ‘What Is Love?’, albeit with much brighter cultural references) and give us an era that aged, truly, like fine wine. From the memorable ‘TT’ dance step to the addictive chorus, ‘TT’ positions TWICE at their cohesive best.
5‘What Is Love?’ (2018)
If there’s anyone out there claiming they do not immediately get up and dance to the chorus on this one, they’re lying. ‘What Is Love?’ is often considered one of the pillars of TWICE’s illustrious discography, and for good reason. From the pop culture references peppered throughout the music video to the heart-thumping, alluring lyrics diving into the curiosity of the world’s most complex emotion, ‘What Is Love?’ remains one of TWICE’s most triumphant tracks.
4‘Dance The Night Away’ (2018)
Leave me stranded on a deserted island with TWICE and I will, gladly, “dance the night away” with them. If one were to trace the origins of how summer came to be known as the ‘Season Of TWICE’, look no further than this bouncy, tropical number, which got us all wishing for beach trips of our own – before we lost them to COVID, of course.
The year may not be over yet, but at least we know what we’re nominating as one, if not the, best B-sides of 2021. With inspirations for the track’s beats coming straight from the retro era, ‘Scandal’ is playful, confident and just spicy enough to make you dream of running barefoot through a city after a night of partying. There may not be many words, but “the night gets filled with eye-contact between us”, as TWICE put it.
2‘Like Ooh-Ahh’ (2015)
This one might be an oldie, but it’s definitely a goldie: ‘Like Ooh-Ahh’ was the world’s very first taste of TWICE, and what a glorious dish it was and still is. From that opening flute melody to the unforgettable zombie film-inspired music video, not to mention the iconic Momo-led bridge/dance break, TWICE’s debut had already marked them as the ones to watch way back when. In fact, the song – which was written by hitmaking duo Black Eyed Pilseung – was so good, that they continuously returned to work with TWICE on ‘Cheer Up’, ‘TT’, ‘Likey’ and ‘Fancy’.
1‘I Can’t Stop Me’ (2020)
Uh, excuse me, don’t you mean “the song of 2020”? Because it sure as hell was. As the retro-mania raged on in K-pop, TWICE were kind enough to slay us with their alluring take on synthwave with ‘I Can’t Stop Me’. Glorious and glamorous, the song’s charm lay in the way TWICE flirted with danger at every turn, at times almost making us defect to the dark side. With ‘I Can’t Stop Me’, TWICE perfected their reinvented image – it had the power of tracks such as ‘Love Foolish’ and ‘Don’t Call Me Again’, yet was streaked with the confident, seductive flirting on ‘More & More’, making it one of their best tracks to date.