Korean rock band FTISLAND has released their eagerly awaited sixth Korean language album Where’s the truth? As one of the mainstays in the Korean music industry with numerous awards and accolades (FTISLAND was nominated for Song of the Year at MAMA 2015), the five piece group returned to the studio this year after the release of their 7th Japanese language album N.W.U. Hello Asia editor Johnny Au chatted with members of FTISLAND about the making of Where’s the truth, the accompanying music video to the lead single ‘Take Me Now’ and what it will take for them to be successful in the western music scene. FTISLAND also offered up a funny anecdote from their 2015 South American tour.
FTISLAND congratulation on your latest album Where’s the truth? It’s a unique album name! Can you tell us what is the meaning behind Where’s the truth?
It holds the meaning of trying to face all prejudice against us and finding truth. It also carries the worries we have in what kind of music we seek to do in the future.
Where’s the truth? is FTISLAND’s sixth Korean album. What have you done differently on this album compared to your previous releases?
Like our fifth album I Will, which we consider our musical turning point, this album has a similar powerful music style. We tried to immerse various styles in our tracks music genres such as Dubstep in ‘Paparazzi’ (track no.7) and included other genres that are usually not our style.
What music direction has FTISLAND taken with Where’s the truth? Does FTISLAND have a specific sound in mind for their Korean albums compared to your Japanese albums?
We tried to show more of a dynamic side to emphasize our band image once again. In Japan, we always tried to show music we wanted to do and compose songs ourselves. Like Japan, we tried to stay strong in the music we wanted to show and not stray from this because of what others thought. We wanted to highlight a live band sound.
Will we see all members of FTISLAND contribute lyrics for Where’s the truth? as in previous albums? What are some of the themes and topics you like to write about? Do you prefer to write solo or in a group?
This album really holds our own colour and identity as a band since we all composed and wrote lyrics for this album and even participated in producing. We didn’t have a specific theme or topic, we just focused on what we wanted to say in our music. The process for creating this album involved completing our tracks by asking each other’s thoughts on songs we wrote. It was great to work altogether as a team when writing our songs and practicing.
The title song for Where’s the truth? is ‘Take Me Now’. What’s the track about?
The track features a dynamic rock sound. The track includes synth sounds and an explosive energy and is special to us since we composed, wrote the lyrics and produced it as well. We think that it’s a track that releases stress, just in time for the summer heat.
What’s your favourite tracks on Where’s the truth?
We’re attached to all the tracks but we especially like ‘We Are’. It’s a sweet song written just for our fans.
What should we expect from the Music Video of ‘Take Me Now’? What can you tell us about the video itself? How much involvement did you have in the concept of the MV?
The concept of the MV is about fighting the prejudice placed against FTISLAND and blowing up the confronting problems. We also used imagery such as guns, fire and more to enhance the intensity of the track. We also took part in producing the track, directing the MV, photoshoots and concepts.
FTISLAND has performed in many places around the world. What has been your most memorable show so far? Do you have a favourite venue and/or city to perform in?
I think our Chile show from our Europe and South American tour last year is most memorable. Our audience was very passionate as they jumped, shouted and head banged throughout the show. We also had an incident where one very passionate fan threw their brassiere onto the stage which to say the least really shocked us!
What should fans expect from the live performance from Where’s the truth? Are we in for any surprises?
In this album, you will be able to find a dynamic and expressive ‘real sound’. We want to show that we are a band who plays real music and also let everyone know that ‘there’s this kind of band in Korea’ by showing our best in our live performances.
What are the ambitions and goals of FTISLAND? You are established artists in Korea, Japan and around Asia. What will it take for FTISLAND to be successful in the western market and beyond?
We plan to continue highlighting our rock genre. To put it simply, we want to expand the variety of music. In Korea, music is public based or based on how well you do on the charts but there are many countries overseas where our type of music is considered the music of the public. We think that we will find success by steadily expanding the variety of music.
Where’s the truth? is currently available on iTunes Australia.
Translation by FNC and Lucy Lee