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XG Interview About Tour, New Single Woke Up

XG Interview About Tour, New Single Woke Up

Global girl group XG has been hard at work preparing for a massive second half of 2024: Their new single, “Woke Up,” drops today (May 21) after they kicked off their first world tour on Saturday.

“[The tour] is something that we’ve been looking forward to ever since our debut,” the group’s leader, Jurin, told The Hollywood Reporter through a translator just days before their first show.

The seven-piece hip-hop and R&B-inspired group — made up of members Jurin, Chisa, Hinata, Harvey, Juria, Maya and Cocona — debuted in 2022 with the single “Tippy Toes,” featuring a bold prediction of their future as belted by Chisa: “Understand that we didn’t come to play, babe. Here to dominate.”

True to those lyrics, XG (short for “Xtraordinary Girls”) has been on a meteoric rise since then. The group hails from global entertainment company XGALX, which was initially created as a global artist project under Japanese entertainment conglomerate Avex in 2017.

A global audience has been the group’s focus from the start. XG’s discography is entirely in English. They have previously promoted within the K-Pop system, attending and performing at Korean weekly music shows (think MTV’s TRL, featuring performances pre-recorded in front of live audiences and the top-charting song awarded live on-air). The group has already performed at music festivals in several different countries including the U.S., Australia and Singapore.

XG performs at Billboard Presents The Stage during SXSW Sydney on October 20, 2023 in Sydney, Australia.

Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images for SXSW Sydney

Following their debut single, XG and their producers have continued to experiment with new sounds. In the group’s third single album, featuring songs “Left Right” and “Shooting Star,” XG channeled the breezy, addicting sound of Y2K R&B girl groups, adding what has become a signature futuristic science-fiction feel with their music videos.

Their next release NEW DNA, the group’s first EP, seamlessly showcased the many sides of XG with the Y2K-reminiscent summer single “New Dance” and the futuristic hip-hop heavy “GRL GVNG,” which references the “female empire” that XG is trying to create.

With their new single “Woke Up,” XG are continuing their creative evolution. The song marks the group’s first all-rap single, which XGALX has described as “a track with 808 bass infused with sounds unique to East Asia.”

As Maya puts it, all seven members of the group are portraying a different character in the single and in the music video, and each have their own main character moment. “You can see in the music video, as well,” she says. “We really feel like each of us suited the characters really well.”

When asked about what they were most excited for their fans, collectively known as Alphaz, to see in the music video, Maya notes the excitement around her fellow members’ new looks. Several of the group members have new hair colors and styles, a sure sign to fans that a new chapter in the group’s story was underway. They also expressed their excitement for fans to see all the little details of the music video, including the costumes and choreography.

On top of their many activities, the group recently collaborated with Riot Games to sing the official hype song for the Valorant Champions Tour Pacific 2024, a competitive e-sports tournament for the developer’s wildly popular Valorant video game. The song “Undefeated,” released in April, fits right in with XG’s discography, delivering a message of throwing away one’s fears and rising victorious.

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“It was a good match,” Juria said of the collaboration, noting that she felt the message of the song was “really, really strong.”

In the midst of single releases and collaborations, XG has also been preparing for their first world tour. The tour kicked off on Saturday and Sunday with two nights in Osaka, Japan. The group then heads to Yokohama, Japan for two shows on May 25 and 26. From there, the group will tour various cities across Asia before heading to the United States in October and Europe in November, although exact details have yet to be announced.

XG has been diligent in preparing for this next step. “It was a huge goal for us, so when we first heard we were going to go on a world tour, we were just so, so happy,” Jurin said.

“We’re rehearsing right now to prepare, from morning to night,” she continued. The 21-year-old noted that the group is putting in the hard work and that she thinks the final result will “just knock the socks off of all the Alphaz out there.”

With a wide range of songs, one would assume that the members might have different songs they’re excited to take on the tour. In what is perhaps a testament to their synergy as a group, after a lively and endearing discussion with one another, all seven members decided on one song they’re most excited to perform on tour, answering in unison: “Left Right.”

Unsurprisingly, the group is excited to see their fans from around the world on the upcoming tour. “The Alphaz are a huge motivation for a lot of what we do,” Jurin explained. “Just being able to deliver the music that we make, to them, is a huge part of XG.”

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