Recently on January 8, JYP girl group ITZY officially released the title track “Untouchable” and their latest album “Born to Be”. As main vocalist Lia is on hiatus due to health concerns, initial promotional images show ITZY with its four-member lineup, drawing comparisons to BLACKPINK, mostly due to the concept and palette.
Meanwhile, prior to the release of “Untouchable,” the members mentioned Lia’s temporary hiatus from activities due to health reasons.
ITZY mentioned Lia before the release of “Untouchable”
In particular, leader Yeji expressed positive thoughts about the four girls’ comeback, “It’s the beginning of the year, and I’m really happy about this positive start. Please look forward to the memorable things we’ve prepared in the ‘Born to Be’ album.”
Yeji also addressed Lia’s temporary hiatus, saying, “Lia always supports us. She said she will closely follow this promotional period. With Lia’s encouragement, we will make every effort to show a better version when she returns.”
ITZY is set to embark on a world tour after promoting the album
Additionally, Chaeryeong emphasized, “To minimize Lia’s absence, we are putting in extra effort to prepare for the upcoming world tour.” Accordingly, ITZY is planning a world tour after promoting the album. However, concerns about the group’s stage without the main vocalist have led to apprehensions among fans. The comeback with “Untouchable” has also generated mixed opinions due to resemblances to BLACKPINK’s concept.
On the other hand, JYP previously faced criticism for “unoriginality” when establishing ITZY’s latest concept. In particular, the “warrior style” newly donned by ITZY looks somewhat familiar to BLACKPINK. Moreover, some teaser images also bear strong resemblance to aespa.
Additionally, quite a number of people express regret for ITZY’s golden era. In fact, the 5-member girl group was considered a leading girl group of K-pop’s 4th generation with impressive talents, only for JYP’s poor promotion and song selection to reduce their fame.
The absence of Lia also raises concerns, and most fans wish for Lia to return to activities soon.
ITZY’s momentum seems to be declining in recent years, with their latest MV “Untouchable” garnering just over 2.5 million views on the first day of release, a modest figure compared to ITZY’s normal achievements. Additionally, it remains to be seen if the new title song will be able to live up to ITZY’s previous hits.