I was so focused on writing and editing my Busted! recaps that I barely did anything that was actually related to K-pop last week! Thankfully, I have just enough free time to post my thoughts on some of last week’s releases before the next wave of comebacks. First up is AB6IX, who have released the hopeful and uplifting “Stay Young” to calm us in these times of uncertainty.
A lot of boy groups are doing really edgy and charismatic concepts these days, so I was pleasantly surprised that AB6IX picked a such a light and cheerful style of song. The melody is really soothing, and I feel like it’s the kind of music you listen to when you’re curled up in your blanket looking for some relaxation and comfort. It definitely has a youthful and fresh feel, but it thankfully doesn’t sound too young (aka too childish or babyish). My favorite part of “Stay Young” is the fun and delightful chorus; there’s a nice balance between a catchy instrumental hook and a sweetly sung melody that suits AB6IX’s vocals. And I really like the carefree like choreography with its upbeat and bouncy footwork.
While I don’t usually put much stock in lyrics, I think “Stay Young” has some very well written ones that are quite relatable. The lines that really stand out to me are, “Why do you call it rebellion when it is only a different path with others” and “How dare you try to step on the flower that did not even bloom.” (Those are taken from the English subtitles on the music video, by the way.) A major part of youth and growing up is dealing with your insecurities – learning to being comfortable with yourself and the choices you make, even if they aren’t the same as everyone else. And that’s something we actually struggle with well into adulthood. I think the lyrics express these feelings well, and they can offer some reassurance to people who are going through this situation.
I wasn’t that drawn in by the music video, but I liked how they used a deserted amusement park as the background for most of it. It really expressed those feelings of emptiness and loneliness, and it let the members provide a nice contrast by filling the spaces with their positive energy. I thought it was nice how the members started out alone and isolated, but came together by the end of the video. I did feel that the scene of them walking through the ruins of a city and finding a flower was a bit out of left field, and I thought it could have either been brought in earlier or shown more frequently. But I appreciate the message that you can find something positive out anything, even though I’m perpetually a “glass half empty” kind of person.
MY OVERALL INTEREST LEVEL
(NOTE: My options for each category are “Love,” “Like,” “Neutral,” “Not My Style,” or “Dislike.” But I rarely dislike anything, so I’ll mostly be using the other four.)
AB6IX is another of those groups that’s on my radar but hasn’t released anything that’s pulled me in yet. I think all of their music is very diverse and creative, but so far it’s really just not my style. Truthfully, I feel kind of the same way about “Stay Young.” It’s a very pleasant and nice song, but it’s ultimately just too mellow to hold my attention for long. As poignant and meaningful as the lyrics are, I usually listen to K-pop as a distraction from my real-world issues and not for comfort and relatability. That being said, I think “Stay Young” is absolutely lovely with an important message, and it’s a breath of fresh air from a very dance-heavy music industry – even if I really only need a quick breather.
(“Knee Jerk Reaction” is a column I created to talk about comebacks or debuts when I don’t have a lot of time to write in-depth reviews. A knee jerk reaction is like an automatic response, so it’s a post about my initial thoughts on the song, the music video, and the performance if it’s available. Compared to my reviews, everything is more stream of consciousness and less analytical. And everything is 100% my own opinion!)
SOURCES: Cover image and music video belong to Brand New Entertainment.