ASTRO marks the beginning of a new week with their latest comeback, ONE, and their second studio album, All Yours. This is the first time we have seen ASTRO as a group with a new song since their Knock comeback last year. Since Knock, ASTRO launched their first official unit, Moonbin & Sanha, through the release of Bad Idea. The group also released a special single, We Still (Be With You), at the very end of 2020 but this was not promoted. But now the group is back in promotional mode for ONE, so let’s check out out their latest title track.
ONE is one of the songs that you need to listen to a few times before you could really dig it. My first impression of ONE was that it sounded very generic and typical of male groups releasing a song with an edgy sound. But the more I listen to it, the more I find myself diverting away from that first impression and coming to like the song. And within in a day of its release, I am enjoying ONE a lot. It still shares that typical edgy sound profile, but I find ASTRO to really infuse their own charms into the song. The song starts off with the song’s main hook. The backing instrumentals for this hook at this stage of the song isn’t as dynamic as when the hook reappears in the song, but it held out to be a good opener for the song. The first verse brought in their vocals. These vocals were best during the pre-chorus sequence with Eunwoo and MJ bringing in some atmospheric vibes that make me anticipate the chorus. The instrumental builds to the chorus, which its melodies felt like it could easily have slid into ‘back in the day’ KPOP. The song’s main hook returns with a more abrasive and texturally interesting backing. I quite liked this change in style. Firstly, it is definitely more dynamic. Secondly, it brings forth that edgy feel. Thirdly, the repetition of the hook makes it catches on quite easily. The song’s most surprising part is Rocky’s rapping that follows immediately right after the first chorus. Rocky’s really fast and sleek delivery of his part of the rap sequence will be going down as one of the most iconic moments in KPOP 2021. Fast forwarding towards the end, ONE peaks during the dance break just before the final chorus, going for the song’s most robust and heightened intensity sequence. Overall, I found a lot to like and look forward to in my many repeats of ONE. I do think it sits below some of their past title tracks, but ONE is still pretty much up there for ASTRO’s discography.
Aside from the choreography and closeup formula, there isn’t much going on in this video. I wished these was more to the video, such as cool special effects applied in post-production or even during production through lighting and camera work. There was some of each in the video, but not enough to really match the song’s dynamic and intense side. The closeups did capture the best of the group’s visuals and I liked the industrial vibes that the music video’s sets had going on. I just wished there was more to the video.
The choreography looks good, based on the snippets I saw in the music video. I am looking forward to seeing the full routine around the song’s hook. With the mixture of edgy and sensual outfits the members wore throughout the video, I think the choreography of the particular section could easily go either way. The dance break also looks really cool and dynamic, as well.
Song – 8/10
Music Video – 6.5/10
Performance – 8.5/10
Overall Rating – 7.7/10