Album Review: NCT U – “The 7th Sense” (Korea, 2016)

NCT U

Fresh onto the K-Pop scene in 2016 is NCT U a subunit of the new SM Entertainment multi-member group NCT, who are turning heads with their debut track “The 7th Sense” and follow up “Without You”. At first, I wasn’t particularly interested in NCT after hearing about their interchangeable and endless member concept, but these two songs has certainly solidified my interest. As I grow older, I’ve found that certain concepts just don’t appeal to me much as a grown woman and things tend to become rather repetitive in the industry. But NCT U truly surprised me with this debut.

“The 7th Sense” is a song described as part of the genre “Future Bass” with a “hip hop groove base” to it. This is a sound I’m personally not familiar with and haven’t heard of before but it has a dreamy vibe to it which I actually really enjoy. This song has easily topped my most played songs as there is something so addictive about the sound. This song is definitely a hit or miss with the bigger crowd though as it is an uncommon sound in K­-Pop and can be perceived as somewhat “boring”.

The music video for “The 7th Sense” is a dream for those who enjoy artistic aesthetics in music videos as it features intriguing sets, coloured lighting, dance sequences and overlaying effects. The vibe of the video matches the song completely as the colours aren’t too saturated and have the same soothing effect as the song. Certainly a very unpopular opinion but I’m truly guilty of loving their fashion in the music video, it is everything I loved from 90’s fashion with modern twists added in. Unfortunately, I don’t see these looks catching on unless you are someone who is extremely good looking!

The dance is what sold me on NCT U and “The 7th Sense” and got me curious in the first place as I am a dancer and have a strong interest in choreography. When I first saw the choreography, I had to immediately find out who created it and after tedious research and digging I discovered that s**t kingz were the masterminds behind this piece. The choreography plays around with levels and shapes which keep a consistent interest and anticipation for what comes next. The choreography is so visual, eye-catching and strong compared to recent releases in the K­-Pop scene where they are toned down for stronger vocal stability. The downside to such strong and sharp choreography is that the members are struggling to put on a stable vocal performance as they are visibly out of breath throughout performances.

Despite the small negatives, NCT U is one to truly watch out for as the content quality has really been stepped up by SM Entertainment recently. I will be anticipating future releases and hope they stay on this route of outside of the box concepts, strong choreography and genre experimentation.

Review Score: 7.5 out of 10

The 7th Sense by NCT U is currently available on iTunes Australia.

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