As part of KAT-TUN’s two-pronged victory lap before hiatus, Greatest Journey acts as both the theme and farewell to their (very funny) variety show Sekaiichi Tame ni Naru Tabi. More importantly, it’s the most upbeat, sunny track the guys have released in awhile, sending them off with a joyful blast of singalong pop.
The first time I heard the track, the chorus turned me off. It’s a particular style of melody — catchy and repetitive, but also a bit frantic — that seems to be a hallmark of a lot of jpop. But, after a few listens, I was won over by the song’s sheer energy. Everything about it feels double-time, like there isn’t a moment to stop and breathe. Normally, this would be to the track’s detriment, but the production choices compliment Greatest Journey‘s sense of ceaseless propulsion. It’s all hand claps and crunchy, power pop guitar. Connecting the sound with the music video’s summertime images really helped to anchor the concept.
On the other hand, the song feels much more suited to some of the younger acts that share KAT-TUN’s label, Johnny’s Entertainment. As fun as Greatest Journey is, it’s not particularly mature or groundbreaking in sound. If it wasn’t so damn catchy, I’d consider it a regression in sound. As it stands, it’s really hard to be critical about a song that’s having such a good time.