K-Pop A-Z

K-Pop A-Z Review: EXO – Stay

One song. Every day. Alphabetical order.

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Stay (from Universe – 2017)

Taken from EXO’s third winter album, Stay is a traditional piano-led mid-tempo augmented with a few unique instrumental touches. It’s even produced to sound like it’s spinning on an old record player. The chorus brings in some ambient, trip-hop percussion that kicks around for remainder of the track. Though not an unusual sound unto itself, Stay feels idiosyncratic within EXO’s discography. It’s moody in a different way from most of their material, and grows more robust and layered as it grows. Melodically, the track is too lightweight to become a standout, but I appreciate their willingness to switch things up — especially within the risk-averse context of a holiday album.

 Hooks 7
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7


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