Hi! It’s Annie!
There was a lot happening with Everglow today. Of course, the biggest thing was definitely their release of their new album and music video for ‘First’. A few days ago they released a trailer for all three of the songs they would be featuring on the new album, so the sounds weren’t completely foreign. But I can honestly say that I enjoyed absolutely everything that Everglow released today. Along with all of that, the group also recently came out with some pretty surprising news. So, without further explanation, let’s just get into everything that Everglow gave us!
Ok, so obviously we need to talk about this amazing music video. Not only did all of the girls look amazing, but it was actual proof that the fans criticisms were listened to. Of course, I have serious issues with people attacking Mia for seemingly being favored by her company. It’s not like she had anything to do with it and part of it is because she’s one of the strongest vocalists and dancers in the group. But I do appreciate that with this song they decided to center Sihyeon more than Mia and at least show us that they can focus on other people as well. Seriously, Sihyeon was such a stand out here that my sister is now a Sihyeon bias. Yiren also got a lot which was really nice! But I think what really stood out to me about the changes they made was mostly with Onda. After the release of ‘Dun Dun’ many fans were reasonably upset that Mia got a dance break when Onda is probably the best dancer in the group and received very few lines in the song. While Onda did get a little more in the way of lines for this release, she still didn’t get much. However, they centered Onda for almost every dance break and even gave her a dancing moment of her own. The statement with Onda for this music video was clear. They were giving fans what they wanted and cementing Onda as their featured dancer. And of course she killed it! I also have to give them huge props for their choreography. I saw several people commenting on the difficulty and complexity of their choreography, which is something that we often see with guy groups but not as much with girl groups. I appreciate Everglow for all the gender boundaries that they’re continuously shattering. Their choreographer for this video is the same guy who does the majority of ATEEZ’s choreography and ATEEZ is known for their insanely difficult and fast-paced dancing. Everglow killed it and looked great while shattering that glass ceiling.
The song was absolutely great. I fell in love with it from the moment I heard the small portion of it in the trailer. The trap sound of it really fits them vocally and fit what their sound is coming to be. I feel like this album solidified, at least for me, what their sound is. They do a really nice mix of fast paced songs with catchy beats and slower fun songs. In that way they actually remind me just the slightest bit of ATEEZ. Which is definitely a good thing! That aside, I don’t think they sound like ATEEZ or anything else for that matter. I saw a lot of people immediately making posts and videos about how ‘First’ sounds like it ripped off this K-pop song or that K-pop song and I don’t buy any of that. They have a very unique sound to them and this song is, if anything, more proof of that. I can honestly say I have never heard anything like it before and it made their more unique comeback outfits made sense. Between the trap beats, Mia and Yiren’s powerful vocals, and the softer chorus vocals of Sihyeon, it was a perfect blend of things that people might not have expected to go together. I will say that the song could have used a little more rap for EU and Aisha. Aisha got a few lines and it felt like EU got even less. I ended up looking up line distribution and I was surprised to find that EU technically got more lines than Aisha, especially because Aisha was featured a bit more in the MV. But it was mostly background interjections that pushed EU over Aisha. I will say I found it strange that they gave Mia some rap-like pieces that could have gone to the other girls. Mia killed it as always though!
Don’t Ask Don’t Tell:
This is a very lighthearted, softer, and more retro sounding song that I loved as well! What surprised me most about this song was line distribution. While Onda, Aisha, and Yiren didn’t get as much as Mia or Sihyeon, they got quite a bit more here than we usually see. And they sounded great! All of their softer tones blended together perfectly for this more vocal heavy song. And Mia and Sihyeon got pretty much the same when it came to line distribution. But EU barely got anything in this song. I know that this isn’t supposed to be that rap heavy, but it did make me sad to see that she was only in five percent of it. Anyways, this has a cute and dance-y feel to it that makes me sure I’ll keep going back to give it a listen.
This song is one of the slower and softer ones that they’ve recorded. It’s probably my favorite of that category. The best word I can use to describe this song would be ‘beautiful’. Also can we talk about the fact that Onda got so many vocal pieces in this song and she sounded perfect? She got even more than Yiren and Aisha, which doesn’t usually happen. As this song was also vocal based, Mia and Sihyeon got the most as usual and Mia featured a bit more prominently here. I can see why, her softer vocals stood out gorgeously here. EU once again got the short end of the stick. It really felt like EU took Onda’s usual spot in this album where she was by far the least utilized member. I do know that EU isn’t completely comfortable singing, but it would have been nice to even hear some of her rap a bit more. Either way, this song was beautiful but I wish we would have gotten a little bit more of EU.
Obviously, this isn’t a song from the album. Along with the release of their music, Everglow made the fairly shocking announcement that EU would be stepping down as leader. She is not leaving the group, so please don’t freak out! Instead they said that they would be making a new and refreshing change by appointing Sihyeon as the leader. I’m not quite sure what to make of all of this. I hope EU is doing well and she didn’t step down because she wasn’t feeling her best. But I completely support whatever decision they make and I know they probably made the decision for a very good reason. It’s entirely possible that Sihyeon just made sense within the group as a leader. Up until quite recently, it’s been common practice in K-pop groups to make the eldest the leader automatically. But as leaders like Namjoon from BTS and Hongjoong from ATEEZ have shown us, that isn’t always the best choice. I mean, could you imagine Jin leading BTS? That would be absolute chaos, though hilarious, but still chaos. And it isn’t a role I could imagine Jin liking much either. More and more new groups have begun to choose the natural leaders rather than the default-by-age leaders. And that’s a great thing! It could be that Everglow made this change because they too wanted to stray from the default and choose something they felt would be more natural. Whatever made them decide to do this, I completely support them!
This comeback was full of amazing moments and incredible news. Really this group never stops surprising me. They are one of the most unique groups in general in the industry and I hope this comeback brings them even more fans than before!
See you across the pond!