In 2020, JYP Entertainment boy band and leaders in fourth-generation K-pop Stray Kids dropped “God’s Menu,” an exemplar of their explosive trap-pop, ornamented with baritone Felix’s delivery of a line in the second verse: “Cooking like a chef/I’m a five-star Michelin.” The theme of expertly blending ingredients has continued to their 2023 full-length 5-STAR. It’s a high-end collection of flavors including electronic rap-pop (“Hall of Fame”) and heavy-hitting hip-hop indebted to Eminem and Nicki Minaj in equal measure (“ITEM”). There’s also dance detours (“DLC”), brassy ballads (“Collision”), pop-rock with an opening riff that recalls Lustra’s “Scotty Doesn’t Know” (“Mixtape : Time Out,” inspired by a vacation the group took in Gangwon Province). And for all the variety, there’s just one collab, the retro-rap “TOPLINE” with Korean hip-hop progenitor Tiger JK of the group Drunken Tiger. Cohesion is in the concept: Across 12 tracks, Stray Kids find confidence in themselves and their fans, a sonic celebration of acknowledging the bad to get to the good.

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