K-Pop: ATEEZ ‘ZERO: FEVER Part.3’

Promotional image of Jeong Yunho, Choi San, Kang Yeosang, Kim Hongjoong, Choi Jongho, Jung Wooyoung, and Park Seonghwa. Copyright goes to KQ Entertainment.

Hey! Hallie here!

ATEEZ’s next album was just released! ‘ZERO: FEVER Part.3’ is a really strong entry in this connecting line of albums. Stronger than I expected, and I had very high expectations. There isn’t one weak song on the album. From peppy songs that bring instant serotonin to songs that hit so hard they’ve become some of my new favorites, we have tons to talk about. Especially now that Mingi’s back and all the members are being given plenty of time to show off their incredible skills! Let’s talk about these new songs! (As a warning: Consensus is still out on who sings which part of each song. I’m going by what I see on a few websites and I’m being a little vague, but I could absolutely be wrong about who sings what. I’m only completely confident in what parts I ascribe to Mingi, Hongjoong, and Jongho.)

“Eternal Sunshine”:

This track is an absolute serotonin provider. It definitely has the feeling of a Summer song, despite the fact that Summer’s over. It’s fun beat and smooth chorus instantly put the listener in a good mood. Once again, the lighter register of Yunho blows me away in this song. He switches off parts of the chorus with San, and at times their tones are so similar I forget which verse I’m listening to. Meanwhile, Jongho rightfully takes the last part of the chorus to hit all of us harder with his incredible voice. I love the rap verses in this song. Mingi’s captures the light, lovesick feel of the song while Hongjoong’s picks up the beat a little more and gives us a Peter Pan reference that is absolutely on brand for him. Wooyoung, Yeosang, and Seonghwa are all spaced throughout the song with a little less than the rest, but they all do amazing jobs. Seonghwa’s opening is addictive, as is Wooyoung’s closing, and no one can deny how strong Yeosang comes through during the chanting. It isn’t perfect in showing off all of the members, but it still gives us some excellent moments for all of them and it’ll definitely get stuck in your head.

“Feeling Like I Do”:

This song very much has a similar feel to “Eternal Sunshine”. Right from the beginning, though, it’s faster and softer. There’s almost a whispery sound to the pre-chorus, which is a direct contrast to the energy of the chorus. Instead of the more “lovesick and devoted” feel of the last song, this one’s more of a “lovesick and determined to prove their worth” song. Yunho comes into this song with his deeper register, which definitely adds a satisfying layer to the song. Yeosang adds to this very well on his own and it’s nice to hear him get a lengthier piece of the opening. Our whispery pre-chorus is unsurprisingly provided by San, who’s very good at the soft and seductive sound, while Seonghwa builds up to the chorus with some higher notes that I’m absolutely in love with. Jongho and Wooyoung absolutely kill it during the chorus and neither overshadow the other. The raps in this song are really adorable. Once again, Mingi captures the main themes of the song while Hongjoong’s rap sounds exactly like what you’d expect an adorable crush to sound like. As someone who likes faster, upbeat tracks, this one really grabbed me.

“Deja Vu”:

The title track and my favorite song on the album. There was a competition between “Eternal Sunshine” and “Deja Vu” to see which one would be the title track, but this one absolutely wins for me. It’s not that I don’t enjoy “Eternal Sunshine”, but “Deja Vu” is a different sound for ATEEZ and it works so well. We also have a music video for this one! This music video is so good. Right from the beginning we get to see all of them dressed in formal black and white attire while a storm goes on in the background. It sets the mood for the entire video. In other scenes we get black leather and fluid, mesmerizing dancing. About halfway through we also get to see them hanging around what looks like a junkyard. It all really adds to the darker, badass feel. Plus we get to see Hongjoong in his black suit and fedora! Tying into past music videos, maybe? Yunho is insane in both the song and the music video. He looks incredible and his voice hooks you immediately. Also, can we talk about how much time Yeosang got for this song? Just like Yunho, his voice can get very deep, and I think he uses it even more to his advantage than Yunho does here. Seonghwa and San’s voices once again lend to the more addictive parts of the chorus and pre-chorus. They’re so good at hitting the crazy notes leading up to Jongho. Plus, both of them have perfected that seductive tone I can’t stop listening to. Once again, Jongho’s voice packs a punch during the chorus. His voice is a highlight of every song. Hongjoong messes around with a whispery opening to his rap before going into something more teasing and fun, which was refreshing and amazing. Mingi starts out with something a bit lower and ends it all at a whisper, which pairs with his deep voice so well. Also Mingi singing at the end? Perfection. Can we also talk about the switch between San and Wooyoung? Wooyoung’s voice is perfect, as is that shirt grab. Oof. Everything about this song is perfect. Everything.

“ROCKY”:

This one is a more classic sound for ATEEZ when it comes to their epic hype songs. This song gives off the “we’re the shit” message that ATEEZ has absolutely earned. Hongjoong and Mingi are really active in the song. They both get awesome verses that build it up well, and their contributions continue throughout the entire song to add to its structure. Meanwhile, you get a lot of harmonization from the other members. As usual, Jongho gets his moments to stand out. You also get plenty of really excellent vocals from San, Wooyoung and Seonghwa, and some deeper vocals from Yunho and Yeosang. All of it combines really well and makes for a song that makes you want to get up and kick ass.

“All About You”:

This is another really cute song, although it falls into a slower category than everything we’ve discussed so far. It’s a really heartfelt love song. This song also does a really good job in particular at letting all of the members stand out. Hongjoong and Mingi have some more singsong parts of their verses to add to the feel. Seonghwa’s voice is deeper in this song, which he doesn’t utilize too often, to contrast the lighter voices of Wooyoung and San. Yeosang also plays with a lighter tone that Yunho contrasts with his deeper voice. And Jongho hits some crazy notes that play as sweet and soothing here. I love the sound of this one so much. It’s definitely the most calming on the album.

“Not Too Late”:

Most of the other songs on this album are love songs with the exception of “Rocky”. This one is straight up about depression. I love when artists get candid about these types of feelings all of us have struggled with. Especially when times are as hard as they are now. Seonghwa’s voice really gets deeper on these soothing songs and I appreciate it every time. He seriously has amazing range. Hongjoong and Mingi also keep their verses here more melodic which I always love to hear. Both have amazing singing voices. You won’t find much Yeosang in this song, but his deep voice is appreciated. Yunho’s voice once again reaches the range of Wooyoung and San and the three of them do really well in this range for this song. And Jongho stands out with a few really nice notes, especially towards the end of the song. This is my favorite song in terms of lyrics on this album. I’m a sucker for artists addressing real world problems I can relate to, and I love when ATEEZ does it in particular.

That’s it! We got a bit more of an even amount of the members this time around. Although, I will say that Wooyoung is heard a bit less in this album than he has been in the past. I really don’t want this to be the type of situation where we’re trading off Yeosang’s underutilization for Wooyoung’s. This album is a step in the right direction in sharing the focus, but I think we still have to wait for a day when all of them get equal time. Still, I loved this album. I enjoy listening to all these songs and I will absolutely have them on repeat for the next few days. Especially “Deja Vu”.

Don’t do anything fun until I get back!

Hallie

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