CNBLUE drops ‘2gether,’ defends status as rock band

By 줄리 잭슨 (Julie Jackson)
  • Published : Sept 15, 2015 - 17:01
  • Updated : Sept 15, 2015 - 17:01

CNBLUE lead vocalist Jung Yong-hwa and his bandmates perform at a showcase for their second album, “2gether,” at the AX-Korea stadium in Seoul on Monday. (Yonhap News)
Coming six years after their debut and 19 months since their previous release, CNBLUE finally dropped their second full-length album, “2gether,” on Monday.

“We’ve been together for six years, but this is only our second full-length album,” said CNBLUE front man Jung Yong-hwa, during a news conference at the AX-Korea Stadium in Seoul on the day of the album’s release.

“It does feel a little odd that this is only our second album, but because we are always touring and holding concerts, time just seemed to fly by,” he added.

“With this album we really came together with our music, working with each other on the compositions, so I think it’s going to show off our talents and creativity as a band,” said bassist Lee Jung-shin.

This time around the bandmates said they wanted to change their music, taking reign of the release’s creative composition and choosing to veer toward a more mainstream feel by featuring the ever-so trendy electronic dance music beats.

The 11-track album was composed and written entirely by bandmates Jung and Lee Jong-hyun, with the front man’s self-composed “Cinderella” -- an upbeat, disco-feel pop rock song -- as the album’s lead single.

“The classic Cinderella tale of the girl and the glass slipper is exactly the kind of feel that I wanted to tackle with this song,” says Jung.

“The word ‘Cinderella’ just happened to pop into my head while I was on a walk one day, and I just knew I had to write a song about it,” he explained, adding that the single is all about tracking down an unknown girl all in the name of love.
The members of CNBLUE pose for the press during a showcase of for the band’s second album, “2gether,” at the AX-Korea stadium in Seoul on Monday. (Yonhap News)
Aside from unveiling the band’s new album, the members of CNBLUE found themselves having to defend their status as a true rock band.

At a recent music conference forum, CEO Han Seong-ho of FNC Entertainment -- the band’s managing agency -- discussed the ongoing struggles of acts like CNBLUE and the label’s other K-pop band FT Island seeking out the credit and acknowledgement of being seen as a “legitimate” rock band.

Han stated that although the members of CNBLUE and FT Island compose many of their own songs and perform live instrumentation concerts, the two groups are still largely prejudiced in Korea as not being a real rock band, but rather lumped in with K-pop idol groups.

“Up until now we have always been dealing with statements about us not being a real rock band ... but we never really focused so much on labeling what we are as an act,” said Jung.

“Even if we are thought of as an idol band more than a rock band, we are still a band no matter how major or minor,” he added. “And as a band, we really do wish to be invited and asked to play at live rock festivals like other rock groups.”

By Julie Jackson (juliejackson@heraldcorp.com)