Earlier in the year, fueled by my frustration over Golden Child’s long hiatus, I compiled a list of post-2016 debuts who had been out of the spotlight for the longest time. Poor Victon landed at number four. Nostalgic Night (그리운 밤) acts as their first title track in over seventeen months – a lifetime in K-pop. Fortunately, they have the brand strength of Produce 101 behind them this time. Members Seungwoo and Byungchan participated in the latest season of the runaway smash, with the former making it into the show’s debuting group, X1. In other words, this comeback is a big opportunity for the group. So, does Nostalgic Night get the job done?
I hate to say it, but not really. Like their last promoted track, Nostalgic Night takes a more downbeat approach. There’s nothing inherently wrong with that, but a song like this needs a knockout melody to counter its murky energy. Night’s construction seems designed to maximize the amount of angst that can be channeled through the track. Its verses are largely forgettable, casting off the kind of threadbare melody that feels more like lamenting and whining than proper song structure. Victon do what they can here, but there’s just not a lot to grab onto.
Nostalgic Night’s chorus is more successful, even though it opts for an instrumental drop hook with a minimal amount of vocals thrown over the top. I like how the tempo speeds up here, and the EDM sample has potential. But, I wish the production felt cleaner. The different elements all get muddled together, making it hard to appreciate the instrumental’s underlying charm. I applaud the group for making a long-awaited comeback, but I think they’re capable of delivering a knockout track. This feels more like treading water.
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I enjoyed “Time of Sorrow” from last year, with its moodiness and that oriental theme winding around in the background. This one, notsomuch.
This is honestly a let down for me. Nothing stands out and the song didn’t leave an impression in me. I know they can do better, “Time of Sorrow” is still of my favorite songs, even if I don’t listen to it as much anymore.
This is actually probably one of my fave Victon comebacks (probably an unpopular opinion here) but the chorus of the song is what gets stuck in my head so easily and Seungsik’s vocals really create an atmospheric feel to the EDM chorus. I agree the verses aren’t the most memorable but the chorus is what gets me everytime. Usually I’m not a big fan of these kind of songs but Victon just pulls it off in a way that I really enjoy.
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I adored this comeback and it actually makes me want to check out more of Victon’s discography