The biggest comeback of the week is undoubtedly TXT’s, who returns today with their fifth mini-album, The Name Chapter: Temptation. The new mini-album is lead by the title track Sugar Rush Ride, which also dropped today. This comeback follows their fourth mini-album, Minisode 2: Thursday’s Child, which was released last year with Good Boy Gone Bad as its title track.
Sugar Rush Ride starts off quite good. It kicks off with this really promising funky and upbeat dance pop instrumentation (courtesy of some really good rhythmic guitars and a consistent and constant beat) that has this brightness and life to it. There was a section in the verses that had a tinge of Blue Hour to it, which I personally thought was a cool callback to their earlier days (that was from 2020!). The pre-chorus gives us some stunning vocals and melodic work, with some of the members going into falsetto mode for the pre-chorus. We then approach the chorus, which felt more so like as if someone had slammed on the brakes very suddenly. This is because of the flute-y anti-drop that Sugar Rush Ride features as its centrepiece. Personally I am not too troubled by said anti-drop, as it enables the group to opt for an unexpected sensual kick (which I personally found to be a charming characteristic of the song) which also felt slightly hypnotic. Also, the anti-drop sets out what it is intended to do. However, I do agree that it does take too much away from how the beginnings of Sugar Rush Ride, and interrupted the flow of the song considerably and in a disappointing manner. The more troubling aspect of Sugar Rush Ride is the “Sugar Rush Rush Uh” that follows the anti-drop. I can’t take this part seriously (My first impression was to laugh at this section) and felt it was completely jarring and abrasive relatively to the rest of the song. The retro beginnings makes their return in the second verse, but the second chorus is also a repeat of what we heard the first time around. The bridge combines elements from each section of the song (i.e., “Sugar Rush Rush Uh“, the flute-y anti-drop and the funky guitar work), which I thought was clever way to ramp up to the final chorus. However, I am questioning whether the elements work together or not. It literally combines the best and worst elements of Sugar Rush Ride. The bridge leads into the final chorus, which is a better mashup of the sections before it (sans the “Sugar Rush Rush Uh” hook), allowing Sugar Rush Ride to finish on an upbeat and a somewhat explosive note. Sugar Rush Ride might grow on me with more listens as each section becomes more familiar to me and I know what to expect. But for now, it is an interesting song indeed.
The mini-album is titled The Name Chapter: Temptation, and it definitely looks like temptation is the concept of this music video. It appears the members are washed ashore onto an island that tempts them with pretty flowers. But the pretty flowers are devious, acting likes drugs that takes them away from reality and into a different world that comes off as euphoric, pleasurable and more desirable than the situation they are in. In the end, we see the members return to their normal state and decide to leave the island. But HeungingKai appears to be tempted once again. Of course the lyrics can’t talk about drugs (otherwise it be banned in Korea), so the lyrics make reference to sugar high instead. Other than that, I thought the video was really cool. The producers definitely chose very pretty scenery for this video.
In addition to pretty outdoor shots, the members do embrace and show off an amazing sensual energy in this video that is surely going to attract fans. I felt they didn’t hold back whatsoever for the chorus, which is definitely a strong aspect of the performance. As much as I don’t enjoy the “Sugar Rush Rush Uh” part of the song, I do like the abrasive and roughness that it brings the performance. I also liked the extra push they give the moves for the final chorus, to match the newfound energy that comes through during said part. And as a cherry on top, great stage presence and camera chemistry. Overall, a great performance.
Song – 7.5/10
Music Video – 10/10
Performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 8.6/10