Random Box - EP
ZICO occupies a space reserved for mercurial artists like Bruno Mars and Pharrell Williams. As he’s shown in boy group Block B and on his solo hits, the South Korean producer/singer/rapper/dancer can bring the hip-hop ruckus yet still be open to spontaneous flights of fancy. Random Box is just that—a bright selection of moods and lewks tied together by ZICO’s flossy cool. “Love & Hate” is a tortured duet with BIBI that references Sid Vicious and rumbles with an Oakland beat. He flexes his B-boy pedigree on “No You Can’t” (“I put trophies instead of jewelry in the cabinet/Why would I need diamonds when I shine myself?”). The lead single “Summer Hate” is a lighthearted romp with first-generation K-pop idol and fellow I-Land advisor RAIN that searches for relief from the sticky, oppressive Seoul heat. “Roommate,” meanwhile, opens with the familiar Netflix “da-dun” sound effect before slipping into a sweet song about lovers dangerously transforming into roommates. Don’t worry, ZICO bridges the couch chasm with gentlemanly aplomb—he might even let you hold the remote control.