Kpop Album Review: EXO Marks the Present and Future of Kpop
EXO made a comeback by releasing its second mini album 'Overdose' on May 7. It has been about 5 months since the group released its special album 'Miracles in December' in December 2013. EXO is one of the most popular Kpop idols these days, and its new album created a sensation. Here are what happened right after the album release.
Melon's real time music chart.
Naver music's real time music chart.
And Bugs music's real time music chart.
As you can see in the pictures above, all the songs of EXO's new album got to the top of various music charts. The album has two versions, EXO-K version in Korean and EXO-M version in Chinese.
The title track is 'Overdose'. It's a urban dance music based on R&B and hip hop, and is about a man who is poisoned by fatal love.
Here's the music video of 'Overdose'. If there are some people do not know about Kpop at all and they ask me what Kpop is, I would recommend this music video for them.
Kpop idols are loved by people all over the world because they show wild dance moves and at the same time, show off outstanding singing ability. It is never easy to sing and dance to music with a fast rhythm at the same time. During years of trainee period, the idols were repeatedly trained to be able to do that.
By doing so, Kpop idols created a new formula, "Singing = Melody + Lyrics + Dance." They added 'Dance' to the old one "Singing = Melody + Lyrics."
By the way, EXO added another factor to the formula. It's 'Camera'.
As you can see in the music video of 'Overdose', most of the scenes for EXO's dance performance were filmed in one take shot. You can find out this kind of camera technique in the music videos of TVXQ's 'Spellbound' and Super Junior-M's 'Swing' too.
EXO pulled camera work into the territory of singing and stage performance, making another new formula of Kpop idols' performance, "Singing = Melody + Lyrics + Dance + Camera." Following a very measured moving line, the members show splendid performance in the music video.
Being able to produce such a high-quality finished goods and distribute it through various medias such as YouTube and TV is the strength of SM entertainment and EXO. That's how they maximize the fascination of Kpop.
You can listen to various kinds of music in EXO's new album too.
Second track's 'Moonlight' is a R&B music that has a slow tempo, and at the EXO's comeback show held last month, D.O. explained about the song this way. "In the lyrics, one man loves a woman but that woman loves another man. The song is about the man's broken heart. It is a mournful song."
Through the song, you can confirm that the EXO members have as competitive singing abilities as other Kpop vocal groups. Their sweet voices are so attractive.
Third track's 'Thunder' is a R&B dance piece that has lyrics like "You shined bright for a short time like lightning. You lit up the world for a moment. As if the whole world is mine, you showed it to me and left. It's late like thunder. I’m looking for you now." The members rhythmically sing to the refined melody.
Fourth track's 'Run' is a cheerful pop. I think the song will make fans' hearts flutter. They sing "Let's leave together for the unknown world where is full of stars," while the chorus that has lyrics like "Run just like I do Run. From the beginning, Hello Hello, E-yo. As it is, you and me Run. Don’t let go of this hand, E-yo" is catchy and easy to sing along to.
In the last track 'Love, Love, Love', harp, piano and guitar make experimental sounds. The dreamlike melody of the song is taken from Arabian music, while EXO adds attractive rapping to it. The song is about a man who has come to see a new world through a woman he loves.
I think fans will be more than pleased with the long-awaited EXO's new album. At the comeback show, Baekhyun promised fans, "We will make you happy throughout the year." Well, they released a well-made album and will hold exclusive concert in Seoul on May 24 and 25. I'm sure that EXO fans are going to be happy throughout the year.