One song. Every day. Alphabetical order.
History (from Mama – 2012)
Though their discography boasts more ambitious material, History has always felt like a flawless distillation of EXO’s sound. Its effortlessly funky groove combines a bhangra-inspired beat with icy, stuttering electronics and a strong kick that anchors the entire track. EXO’s performance rides the rhythm with convincing swagger, and the vocal arrangement is never boring. The wall-of-sound layering that fuels the chorus is goosebump-inducing, stretched to the point of breaking but never feeling less than forceful. When I was first getting into EXO (and K-pop), it was the explosive Mama that grabbed my attention. But, History made me a true fan. What it lacks in complexity, it makes up for in pure verve, pouncing forward with a crisp efficiency. This is a high water mark for SM’s sci-fi style, fusing their megawatt production with an immensely satisfying pop melody and a rookie group more than capable of delivering charisma by the bucketload.