Fans of K-pop girl group IVE are venting on social media over what some have described as an “unfair” line distribution in the sextet’s latest single, “Kitsch.”
IVE, managed by label Starship Entertainment, dropped “Kitsch” Monday as a pre-release single to their first full-length album, which is set to come out next month. The track, which runs for 3 minutes and 14 seconds, combines crisp vocals, edgy rapping, banging bass beats and even playful whistles for a fresh, upbeat anthem on self-confidence.
While “Kitsch” has been generally well received — having amassed 12 million views on YouTube as of this writing — some IVE fans, known as DIVEs, have expressed disappointment at the song’s noticeably unequal distribution of lyrics. For context, none of the group’s previous major releases (“ELEVEN,” “LOVE DIVE” and “After LIKE”) have received the same criticism.
The backlash centers on IVE member Liz, who appears to sing for less than six seconds in the track. In comparison, all five other members sing for at least 19 seconds, with the longest duration at 23.6 seconds.
But perhaps what has angered some DIVEs the most is that Liz was given the shortest solo line despite being the group’s main vocalist.
“Liz having 6 seconds of lines in IVE’s song is actually such a slap in the face for a main vocal,” one frustrated fan tweeted.
“Now tell me why the main vocalist of IVE, Liz, only has 5.6 seconds in the ‘Kitsch’ line distribution,” another demanded. “Something is not adding up.”
“I love IVE and they’re my fav K-Pop group currently,” another wrote. “But I can’t look past the fact that Liz, the strongest vocal of the group, sang for only 6 seconds in the new song.”
Other fans have blamed Starship, with at least one speculating that it must be “traumatizing” for Liz.
While most comments have been critical of the label, some speculate that Liz’s lack of lines in “Kitsch” could be a marketing strategy.
“I feel like Liz from IVE only getting 6 seconds in their new dinner is noise marketing for the group,” one Twitter user wrote.
Starship has yet to respond to the backlash.