As per the Friday schedule, there is an album review coming your way. And the album being reviewed today is ATEEZ’s ZERO: FEVER Part 1, which was released a under a month ago. The album features the fan-chosen title track, INCEPTION, which the group has promoted for a while now. The alternative title track is THANXX and that was confirmed to be the follow-up promotional track that the group will promote with next week. Unfortuately, I have chosen to not wait around for the THANXX music video and this will be put on the Missed Music Video Review that I have been promising for a while now (don’t worry, it is coming!). But until then, you can check out my thoughts on THANXX and the other side tracks from their ZERO: FEVER Part 1 mini-album below.
2. FEVER – Picking up from the instrumental fade out of the first track (which simply a young voice reading a diary entry and setting the context for this Zero series) is FEVER. I find the FEVER incorporation into the preceding track to be a nice connection between the two. That aside, FEVER pairs the group’s usual dance sound with a sentimental tone. I liked this pairing as it feels well-balanced and doesn’t overwhelm with one or the other. There is a smooth texture to the song, which I feel wonderfully compliments the group and the song’s tone. I personally enjoyed the piano at the bridge and the chorus was very catchy to listen to. Great vocals and rapping from the members, as well. Definitely an ear-catching track that I am sure many will enjoy. (9/10)
3. THANXX – THANXX was the alternative title track that was not picked up as a title track, a decision made by ATINYs. However, we will be seeing the music video release and follow up promotions featuring THANXX in the near future. To me, THANXX was probably the better pick as a title track (out of the two). It had momentum and a powerful energy that ATEEZ would have flourished with on stage. I do admit that the song doesn’t offer anything new, sounding pretty much like the rest of their title tracks that we have heard from the group so far. The exception is the foreign flair that the guitar brings to the song at the start. There were some parts of the song where the members do amp up their sound, such as the bridge, which I find to be an amazing extension of their sound. (9/10)
4. TO THE BEAT– If the group wanted to opt for a different sound for the title track yet still be in the vicinity of their past releases, TO THE BEAT would have been a perfect pick. While I am usually not a fan of autotuned voices, the high pitch ‘To The Beat’ we get as part of the instrumentation adds an addictive sound. The rest of the instrumentation is texturally loaded with unexplored ground in KPOP. And given ATEEZ’s amazing choreography history, I am sure they would have had a spectacular dance break at the very end. The rappers do shine the most in this song but I also enjoyed the chorus where all the members would shout out the lyrics and the low-tone whispering, with the latter helping create a suspenseful and attention-grabbing vibe to the song. (10/10)
5. INCEPTION (Title Track) – Click here to read the full review for INCEPTION. (7/10)
6. Good Lil Boy – Similar comments made regarding To The Beat could also be directed to Good Lil Boy. It also had a different vibe to it, allowing ATEEZ to offer something that aligns to their previous works but not give us the exact same flair. And I honestly think this would have been another great contender for title track status. What I really like about Good Lil Boy is how the tempo changes between the chorus and verses/bridge. The contrast is just so good. And the rush of energy really lifts up the urban hip-hop instrumental to a new level. I particularly liked the acoustic guitar in the pre-chorus, paired with light vocals and acting as a ‘calm before the storm’ scenario. Once again, vocals are great and the rapping had such good momentum to drive the song forward. (10/10)
7. One Day At A Time – One Day At A Time is a pleasant surprise. Not only is it the softest and lightest track on the album, it is also all in English. The R&B track definitely contrasts with the more loaded songs above it, but its softness is much appreciated, providing us with some relief. There is some heaviness to the song, coming in the from the thumping deepness. Other than that, everything else is soothing. Vocals, melodies and atmosphere. My only issue with the song is that the rapping felt a little too much for this song. It just didn’t feel fitting for this song. But other than that, a nice ender to the album. (8.5/10)
Overall Album Rating – 8.9/10