SM kick-started 2022 with a daring experiment in what might be the most mind-bending collaboration imaginable through their supergroup lineup of colossal talent, Girls on Top (GOT the beat) as seven women over four generations of music, forming the ultimate dream group. Their debut track, “Step Back,” was unveiled through an unforgettable performance at SMTown Live 2022, (by members BoA, Taeyeon, Hyo, Seulgi, Wendy, Karina, and Winter) with an introduction that adds chilling levels of intensity and significance from their silhouettes and the back-track choir chorus.
The song then explodes into a euphoric and brilliant array of trap beats and church bells, with endless integrations of synths, hymns, and effervescent vocals. Karina opens the song, singing (translated), “You must step back / who do you think you’re looking at / How dare you go over my head?” doubling down on its hard beats and K-pop Goddess themes, with superstar vocalists BoA and Taeyeon hopping on to give it an extra layer of experience that culminates in a collective chorus. The group sings in unison, “Take your hands off of mine / Step back, step back / It won’t be enough even if you’re born again /Step back, step back,” that creates synergy from a resourceful group of industry experts.
The group’s debut follows the hype of SM’s previous supergroup concept SuperM (an all-star lineup of the label’s men) however, the appearance of GOT is truly a first of its kind. That ability to coordinate several iterations of generational talent with different assets — but still enough to maintain a rare level of performance in overall vocals, choreography, and stage presence, is something that would appear to be daunting. That said, having an impeccable group of renowned soloists and talented rookies with promise for the future constructs a future for K-pop that continues to achieve new and unimaginable heights.
For now, GOT the beat is limited to a single track, but with immeasurable talent like this, there’s certainly hope for more to come.