Like BTS before them, TXT have taken to promoting more than one song from their albums. This approach allows for several big-budget music videos, and Big Hit seem intent on fusing a sense of fantasy lore to TXT’s already-compelling persona. For Magic Island, the guys have delivered a thirteen-minute short film, utilizing part of the song as a motif but spending more time expanding the TXT universe.
As a song, Magic Island is one of The Dream Chapter: Magic’s highlights. It functions as a semi-sequel to the group’s excellent Nap Of A Star, pursuing the same serene, melodic sound. For me, TXT’s vocals are at their best within this style. The relaxed arrangement allows for nuance and blend rather than bombast and autotune. Opening with atmospheric synth and a soft, whistling refrain, the first verse goes on to present a subdued melody perched halfway between singing and talking.
Rather than switch things up, Magic Island’s chorus grows naturally from its verses, bringing in some vocal layering to bolster its effect. This segues into a standout second verse where the guys get to stretch themselves a bit more. But even at its most dynamic moments, Magic Island remains hushed and understated. This simplicity works to the song’s advantage, drawing attention to its small details. I kind of hope that TXT has a song like this on every album. Of course, I’ll always prefer their blockbuster pop singles, but no other idol group is really tackling this kind of dreamlike mid-tempo.
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