For her recent solo debut, "The Baddest Female," 2NE1 frontwoman CL pulled away from Korea's super safe hip-hop scene and took inspiration from the likes of A$AP Rocky and the non-RedOne Nicki Minaj. The result was a woozy, slow-burning rap track with an alien beat and a big money shot that doesn't show itself until the final act. Naturally, K-pop fans hated it and were confused by the nonlinear production, just as they had been by Girls' Generation's "I Got a Boy," 2PM's "A.D.T.O.Y.," EXO's "Wolf," and virtually every other song that dared to be part of the experimental trend that's been so big in K-pop this past year.
Once "The Baddest Female" flopped, CL was quick to announce that 2NE1's then-forthcoming new single would be "very 2NE1," and "very different" from her own solo work. She was right, and that's not a compliment.