Oh, an album review on a Saturday? Isn’t this a surprise? Just catching up on the backlog of reviews!
Road To Kingdom was a blessing for ONF, earning them recognition of their performance skills. And after a brief break after the show wrapped, the group returned with their first release since the show. The release comes in the form of their fifth mini-album titled SPIN-OFF and features the title track Sukhumvit Swimming. Alongside the title track is a special version of New World, which I have previously reviewed and praised when it was first released as part of the suite of singles from the groups that made it to the Road To Kingdom finale. The mini-album also features five other tracks, so have a browse below to see if there are any songs you like (and see which ones I enjoyed).
1. Sukhumvit Swimming (Title Track) – Click here to read the full review of Sukhumvit Swimming. (8/10)
2. Belle Epogue – ONF diverts from their usual dance-centric sound to an upbeat R&B vocal-centric track. We have heard this side of ONF before. But it always nice to revisit it, especially on this mini-album. The main draw point of Belle Epogue are the vocals. There are really good harmonies between the members and the backing vocals. Wyatt surprises me with his ability to go from a soft rap-sing approach to a more intense rap sequence that we expect from the rapper usually. Everything from the instrumental to the melodies in Belle Epogue is quite classy and pleasant to listen to, fitting with the idea that the world looks different after falling in love. (8/10)
3. Geppeto – The members express their desire to go out into the real world and to find out about themselves, bidding goodbye to Geppeto (who was the father of Pinocchio in the fairytale story). And they do so with a more upbeat and groovier number that fills like an appropriate follow-up track to Sukhumvit Swimming. I find everything in this song to be quite vibrant, catchy and fun. Their vocals and melodies feel quite wholesome, while the rapping adds flair to the song that fits ONF’s profile. But it is the instrumental that really grabs my attention with this song, providing likable energy. (9/10)
4. Good Good – Next up on this album is Good Good, which takes the vibrant nature of Geppeto and amps it up a few levels, which results with a playful tune fitting for Summer. I also find the song to be quite pleasant, as the members go with an easygoing vibe. That doesn’t compromise the catchiness of the song, as I find the melodies, energy and atmosphere of Good Good to be quite memorable. All the members surprise me in this track with their rapping ability (and vocals – but these weren’t the scene stealer for me). ETion managed to push ahead with his fast paced rap tempo, while MK’s autotuned rapping was an interesting addition. Hyojin’s rap sequence was extremely well done, while J-Us, Wyatt and U each had good rhythm and nailed their sections. Actually, let me rephrase that. ONF nailed this song. (10/10)
5. Cactus – Cactus is a mid-tempo ballad-like track that puts the focus on the vocals of all members. It is a sad song, as the members reflect upon a mutual breakup that they had just gone through. They mention that both parties need time and that hugging now would be similar to hugging a cactus. I liked how the vocals throughout the song reflect this mutual breakup. You can hear the emotions of the heartbreak in their voices, but they also give off the impression that they are smiling while relaying the lyrics to their former lover, to let them know that everything will be okay. Aside from the vocals, the song is also driven by beautiful and soothing acoustic guitars that adds a layer of delicacy to the song. (9/10)
6. Message – Message is a fan song for Fuse and was previously released in the form of a music video six months ago. I personally do not have much else to say about this song, but that isn’t a bad thing. Once again, it is quite pleasant to listen to. It starts off in a similar manner to a ballad, but it unexpectedly develops into a mid-tempo track (but still retaining that vocal focus that a ballad would have). Here, the vocals are the main focus again, with the members presenting their fans with really nice melodies and harmonies to bring a bit of warmth to the listener. (8/10)
7. New World (SPIN-OFF Version) – Click here to read the full review of New World. (9/10) (You will need to scroll a bit to get to the review)
Overall Album Rating – 8.7/10.