EXO became one of K-pop’s biggest acts when it released its first single “MAMA” in April 2012.
Now attention is on whether the group will continue its exciting run with “The War,” EXO’s fourth full-length album released Tuesday evening via local streaming sites.
“We’ve already been successful with our albums three times. So why not four times? We will do our best to earn the title of ‘quadruple million seller,’” he added.
Tuesday’s event, held outdoors, did not proceed smoothly, as it was interrupted by sudden rain and had to be moved inside. But none of the eight EXO members were daunted by the unexpected disarray. They joked to lighten the mood, saying, “Well, the weather is as tropical as our new album. This was the concept we were looking for.”
True to their words, EXO’s nine-track album “The War” features tropical-tinged reggae-electronic dance music hybrid “Ko Ko Bop” as its lead track, as well as mid-tempo electro pop song “The Eve” and electro dance number “Touch It.”
Suho, the front man of EXO, said, “We assure you that the moment you listen to ‘Ko Ko Bop,’ you will see your body dancing to the song automatically.” The combination of reggae and EDM was a true energy-driver, Chen noted.
The global K-pop act also said that it wanted to send a message that could touch people around the world through “The War.”
Sehun explained EXO’s new album focuses on delivering hopeful messages, which are overtly woven into the songs’ lyrics, to a world that has seen a string of tragic events in the past few years. His bandmates agreed that bringing different parts of the world together with their music was their ultimate goal, adding that they would also like to visit China to reconnect with Chinese fans.
“We haven’t been able to visit Chinese fans for various reasons. We hope to hold concerts in China and make harmony with our fans there if we have opportunity,” said Suho.
Korean entertainers are not able to perform in China as Korea-China relations have soured after the deployment of the US THAAD missile system in Korea.
Although three of the original members have left the group to pursue solo careers, EXO has become a K-pop force at home and abroad by having all of its three full-length albums -- “XOXO” in 2013, “Exodus” in 2015 and “Ex’Act” in 2016 -- sell over 1 million copies.
Videos for five of the K-pop sensation’s hits, “Overdose,” “Growl,” “Call Me Baby,” “Monster” and most recently “Wolf,” have also garnered more than 100 million views on YouTube.
On Tuesday, “The War” received over 800,000 preorders ahead of the official start of sales Wednesday, beating out the previous record held by the group’s “Ex’Act” album, which recorded over 660,000 in stock orders.
By Hong Dam-young (email@example.com)