Also making their comeback today is AB6IX, with the release of CLOSE marking their return. CLOSE is featured on the group’s fourth mini-album, Mo’ Complete: Have a Dream. We last heard from AB6IX through their repackaged 3rd mini-album, Salute: A New Hope and the title track Stay Young in January of this year. This also coincided with the release of a remixed version of Why Don’t We’s Fallin’ (Adrenaline) earlier this year as well that AB6IX and the original artists collaborated with for.
CLOSE is a promised return to deep house, a style that ABNEW and other avid AB6IX listeners may find familiar. For those who are not familar with this group, deep house is the style of EDM that AB6IX debuted and followed up with during their debut year (Breathe and Blind For Love) before embarking on a year of different sounds. CLOSE starts off with twinkling synths and warped effects, before heavier synths and percussion come into play. I find all of this contribute to a somewhat brighter and lighter tone than their earlier works. It is an interesting dynamic for the group. I like how refreshing the members sound in the first verse. The pre-chorus is also quite intriguing, as the members come together to sing the sequence together. This too adds to the refreshing tone of the song. For the chorus, CLOSE delves into the more traditional routes of deep house. But layered on top of that are deep textured synths that added an electric touch to the centrepice of the song. For the second verse, the highlight here is Woojin’s rap sequence. The energy he brings to the song resembles AB6IX’s early days, which is what the song is aiming for. Great success there. For CLOSE‘s bridge, I really liked the delayed return to the final chorus. It was a clean transition that added tinge of suspense to the song. It was also reminiscent of Breathe. For the vocals of the song, we saw a solid showcase of them throughout the song. I do think they could have been a bit more dynamic on the hook front to make CLOSE a little more memorable. But overall, CLOSE is a nice return to roots for AB6IX.
While the music video feels like it is a mixture of different scenes, I think the video is fairly straight forward. From what I could tell from the lyrics, a lot of the song is about not worrying about getting lost when you are in the dark. I assume they are referring to the dark moments in life and feeling lost then in the song. But AB6IX portrays this as the darkness you get when you close your eyes when you sleep, which I think is a clever way of presenting this in a visual manner. We see the members sleeping and then waking up in very different locations. But as the lyrics suggest, everything will be okay. We see the members find each other and then a way out of this dreamland. It is a pretty cool video when it comes together like so. I am not sure about the floating rock we get at the end, whether this links up with another video in the future or if there is a detail hidden in the video that I didn’t catch.
The best part of the choreography for CLOSE is the pre-chorus. I really like how Donghyun in the first verse and Daehwi in the second verse interacted with the other members in the pre-chorus sequences. It looked cool and worked really well with the music. For the chorus, nothing felt out of place. Everything was just clean. I also really like Woojin’s rap sequence, which fitted in so well with his image. It also added some intensity to the performance, which was some icing on the cake for me.
Song – 8/10
Music Video – 9/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 8.3/10