It’d be wrong to say that Zico hasn’t been busy for the past couple of years: He completed military service in the spring of 2022 and since been hard at work as CEO of KOZ Entertainment, launching the successful new group BoyNextDoor. Still, it has been nearly two years since his last solo release, EP Grown Ass Kid. His HYBE bosses (KOZ became a subsidiary of HYBE in 2020, one of HYBE’s first company acquisitions) were quick to remind him of this in a rather hilarious clip from an early 2024 appearance on variety show The Manager. The pressure was on, to produce solo music, and of course, for that music to be a hit.

Zico’s response is “Spot!,” an easy, breezy single featuring another big-name artist at an important career moment: Blackpink’s Jennie, newly her own boss as the CEO of Odd Atelier. The pairing is a match made in publicity heaven, as proven by the immediate success of “Spot!” on Korean charts, and the song itself is an effortless testament to Zico’s continued ability to put his finger squarely on the pulse of pop culture cool.

One of the greatest assets of “Spot!” is that, unlike so many K-pop features, it is a genuine duet. Zico and Jennie share significant screen time in the MV, and trade playfully flirtatious verses throughout:


We’re not going home tonight alright

You didn’t plan on this party

Up and down round and round

Hit the spot spot spot spot

Tossing, turning, why pull yourself together why


Hey girl where you at

I’ll come get you, just send me the address

No dress code, just keep it casual

We’re the real deal, they’re trying too hard yeah

Jennie’s tone is brilliantly highlighted in the track’s chorus, the trendy heft of her voice on full display. Her depth paired with Zico’s forceful yet sing-song rap style is fantastic, and with each oozing a distinctive brand of charisma, it is a truly equal playing field.

One wrench in the triumphant duet is that Zico and Jennie’s chemistry in the MV is downright awkward. The best MV shots of the two play into this slight tension, like when they make eye contact in a car and then sheepishly break it. There’s also something delightful in how the lyrics don’t just flirt romantically, but professionally, an explicit acknowledgment and celebration of the partnership of two talented stars at the peak of their fame:

This project’s called J Z

We gon’ run this town, that’s crazy

Time to show off your quirky side

You’re free to go now hands in the air

If “Spot!” had dared to break from the traditional male-female duet mode a bit more, and embrace an explicitly playful friends, or even artistic frenemies, energy, it would have served Zico and Jennie’s particular dynamic much better.

Nevertheless, “Spot!” is as cool as cool can get. Whether it is Jennie and Zico, or Zico and a crew of backup dancers, romping through alternately sunny and dusky cityscapes, the MV visuals capture what is hip in 2024 to a tee. The fashion in particular, a cornucopia of streetwear, feels ripped directly from the hottest Gen-Z style influencers… which, arguably, Jennie and Zico are both among.

As a pulsing beat grinds and playful squeaks (a favorite of Zico’s at the moment, judging by both “Spot!” and his recent work for BoyNextDoor) add flavor to the track’s simple yet effective production, “Spot!” casts a catchy spell. “Come vibe with us, ride with us,” is the track’s final line, as a loose, exuberant dance break closes the song. Vibes are indeed the name of the game here, and with something as chill and stylish as this, who wouldn’t want to join?

(Naver, YouTube[1][2]. Lyrics via YouTube. Images via HYBE, KOZ Entertainment.)