The Korea Herald


Monsta X completes coming-of-age story with ‘The Connect’

By Hong Dam-young

Published : March 26, 2018 - 14:52

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Each of them has a different story and world view, but the members of Monsta X said they are all connected after all. 

The seven-piece boy band returned with its sixth EP “The Connect” on Monday, bringing to an end its coming-of-age story that began unfolding in its previous album “The Code” from last November.

After hopping about different years as time travelers in “The Code,” the members stand side-by-side as a full-group in its new album, delivering the message, “We are one after all.” 

"Seven of us have different backgrounds and thoughts, but as you can see from our music video, we, Monsta X, do get back together in the end. We are all connected after all,” said Hyungwon during an interview with the Korea Herald in Seoul on Monday. 

Monsta X (Starship Entertainment) Monsta X (Starship Entertainment)

The seven-track album is fronted by lead track “Jealousy,” a blend of retro-punk R&B sound, hybrid trap and future pop. Veering away from its previous hip-hop leanings, the song tunes more into Monsta X’s upbeat and mellow sides, which are well showcased in the song’s old-school R&B and melodic verses.

“Initially, I’d thought, ‘Will I be able to do it?’ as the song sounded kind of bright. But I gained confidence in the process of preparing for it,” Shownu said.

The members were also confident about the album’s overall quality and variety in genre, emphasizing that each track was worth being chosen as a lead song. While “Destroyer” and “Fallin’” incorporate a rock sound and hip-hop respectively, “Crazy in Love” focuses on lyrical melody and “Lost in the Dream” on the powerful drum beat.

Wonho and Jooheon also lent their hands in creating two songs in the album. “If Only,” written and composed by Wonho, is a medium-tempo R&B-hop-hop love song, while another love-inspired song “Special,” made by Jooheon, plays up the trap and brass sound, which the group preferred in its previous works. 

Monsta X (Starship Entertainment) Monsta X (Starship Entertainment)

Formed through Mnet’s survival how “No.Mercy,” Monsta X debuted with its first EP “Trespass” in May 2015 and quickly shot to stardom with its powerful performances and hip-hop-laden dance tracks. Also building a solid international following, the group’s recent single “Dramarame” peaked at No. 7 on Billboard’s World Digital Song Sales chart last year. The act also held its first US tour last year.

Monsta X has a busy schedule this year as well. From June 17, the group will embark on its second Europe tour with stops in London, Amsterdam and Madrid. Last year, the group performed in Paris, Berlin and Moscow. Without giving away details, the members said they are preparing a special package of gifts for the overseas fans.

“Our upcoming Europe tour means a lot to us as it was made at the request of the fans there. As we have always done, we will showcase something new, such as cover songs and new performances,” Kihyun said.

Shownu and Jooheon also hinted at the group’s plan to perform in units and make a video film of the concerts during the tour.

Asked what kind of K-pop act they hope to be, I.M said, “We want to be an act like Lee Se-dol (a professional Korean go player who played against computer program AlphaGo in 2016),” adding, “We hope to weather through any moves that come against us.”

Hyungwon, who has changed his hair color to bright pink, also expressed excitement for the group’s upcoming promotion.

“I have been maintaining dark hair for a very long time as bleaching easily irritates my scalp. But because I wanted to show different sides of myself on the stage, I decided to change my hair color,” he said.