K-Pop: ATEEZ ‘Deja Vu’ vs. ‘Eternal Sunshine’

Promotional image of the ‘Deja Vu’ music video. (From left) Choi Jongho, Kang Yeosang, Jeong Yunho, Choi San, Kim Hongjoong, Jung Wooyoung, Song Mingi, and Park Seonghwa.

Hi! It’s Annie!

Before the release of ‘Fever Part. 3’ there was a huge battle on the internet, promoted by ATEEZ of course, that pitted the song teasers for “Deja Vu” and “Eternal Sunshine” against each other. This war between songs was said by KQ to be the deciding factor of which of the two songs would become the title track of ‘Fever Part 3’. We had everything from celebrity voting to fan voting, until we finally saw the result of all the polls, which was “Deja Vu”. Personally, “Deja Vu” is one of my favorite songs that they’ve ever done so I was rooting for that one. But we were asked to choose over only a couple clips. We only recently received the full amount of content for both songs; which includes both the song and the respective music video for each song. So did “Deja Vu” still win out for me in the end?

Song:

ATEEZ as a group is well acquainted with more lighthearted tracks, such as “Wave”, and more dance heavy tracks, such as “THANXX”. ATEEZ has brilliantly tackled many genres of music over their surprisingly short career so far. They seriously have the knowledge and experience of a group that has been in the game for far longer. When I first heard the clip for “Eternal Sunshine”, I was immediately sold. It sounded a bit like some of their other lighthearted music and I always love what they bring to the table with those. When I first heard “Deja Vu”, I was utterly shocked. The transition between the slower nature of the verses and the faster and hard hitting nature of the chorus was not something I had heard before. In fact, I don’t think many of us have heard anything like that song before. There was something about it that immediately packed a punch while also soothing you at the same time. In any other case it might sound like an odd combo. But ATEEZ are the Kings of trying something brand new and immediately mastering it. Now that both songs are out, was “Deja Vu” as shocking to me in its entirety? Yeah! In the initial snippet we got of “Deja Vu” (that I played so many times before the actual song came out that it’s not even funny), we get the quick raps delivered by Mingi and Hongjoong at the end of the song. In the actual song we saw a lot more rap than I was expecting. It added even more of an unexpected nature to it that I loved. “Eternal Sunshine” blew me away with vocals specifically. There were high notes hit that I wasn’t initially expecting from the song. But I was not able to get over the pleasantly shocking nature of “Deja Vu”, so my vote still has to go with the voted title track. This round goes to “Deja Vu”.

Music Videos:

The MV for “Deja Vu” came out quite a few weeks before the MV for “Eternal Sunshine” was released. In fact “Eternal Sunshine” came out a day ago compared to the three weeks that “Deja Vu” has already been out. So you know I had already been streaming that “Deja Vu” MV nonstop. And can you blame me? This one started out with all of them underground in black leather and then ended with them in the rain. Not to mention this choreography is some of the best, most intense, and smooth looking choreography that they’ve ever done. Each scene highlights them perfectly. Hongjoong looks like the perfect smooth Peter Pan with his orange hair leading the group, and everyone else is also showing off some of their best looks. It’s a MV that’s difficult to look away from. Then yesterday the MV for “Eternal Sunshine” was released, and this has to be one of the cutest MV’s I’ve ever seen for anything. In it we get pairings off of several members. Mingi and Jongho have a lot of fun in a sky blue area. Yunho and Yeosang ride the subway together. San and Wooyoung appear together on a court (and then fly together afterwards). Seonghwa and Hongjoong appear separately in their more solo shots, with Seonghwa in a car and Hongjoong being hilariously dragged across the floor of a subway. They all appear together often too, and they all just look so happy. The image of Yunho and Mingi hugging in the MV was one of the major things that went viral. (I seriously will never be able to express how glad I am to have Mingi back.) Between these two MV’s, I really don’t think I can choose one. They are both so different and amazing in their own ways. This round is a tie.

Aesthetic:

We have to talk about the aesthetics because neither of them are a stranger to ATEEZ. We see them tackle almost an equal amount of dark and light concepts. These were particularly noticeable though, especially because their aesthetics were part of what was used to pit the songs against each other. In general, I usually prefer dark concepts by a small margin. Very small. Because I always love the cuteness of the lighter concepts too! But I actually bought the blue “Fever Part. 3” album, which is the photo book that contains the dark concept pictures for “Deja Vu”. I also want to mention (in utter disbelief) that I pulled both Yunho photo cards. I never pull my bias for any other group but for some reason I always pull Yunho for ATEEZ. That aside, I love the pictures for the photo book and my heart has to go with these looks. The photoshoot in water worked so well for this aesthetic. But the looks for “Eternal Sunshine” are also amazing! I love the large hats and the brightly colored jackets. And that sky blue aesthetic is one that I always love. For me, I personally see ATEEZ as the masters of that darker and more hardcore aesthetic. So, I think I’m also going to have to give this round to “Deja Vu”.

TMA:

I would add performances into the mix too, but we haven’t seen a lot when it comes to performances for “Eternal Sunshine” yet. We’ve had a couple performances, but mostly we’ve gotten “Deja Vu”. Though now that the MV for “Eternal Sunshine” is out, we can expect a lot more of that coming up soon. Some people are theorizing that we may even see stages for “ROCKY” soon, which I would also love. But for now I’ve been binge watching their amazing performances and fan-cams from “Deja Vu” stages. And also, my attention has been completely stolen by their performance at TMA. Mostly because it hit me while I was watching the performance that this was the first time that we saw Mingi perform “I’m the One” and I completely lost it over that. After that though, they had an amazing performance of “Eternal Sunshine” that they performed all in black and still managed to perfectly pull off the lighthearted nature of that song. And then they did a seamless transition into “Deja Vu”. It feels impossible to connect those two songs, but they did it. I have to say, you don’t see many groups out there who feel the need to have a transition piece between songs, but now that’s what I want every group to do after seeing ATEEZ pull it off so well. This felt like one piece to me because of the transition, so once again this round is a tie. I can’t choose one. And they won an “Artist of the Year” award!

So “Deja Vu” did win this for me, but I think literally every song on this album is a win. ATEEZ couldn’t fail with what they prepared for this comeback. Between both their most recent projects, what we saw from ATEEZ on ‘Kingdom’ and now this, I am personally both excited and not ready for what they will inevitably release next. I’m never ready. They always find some way to completely surprise me and leave me with my jaw on the floor. And they only seem to get better and better. At this rate they’ll surpass everyone. And I will be there every step of the way.

See you across the pond!

Sincerely, Annie

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