Rather than opt for a full-fledged comeback, AB6IX have released a digital album that compiles solo tracks by each of the members. Logistically, I understand why Brand New Music decided on this approach. There was the looming matter of their (now-cancelled) European tour, followed by U.S. stops in the spring. And from all accounts, member Park Woojin is still recovering from an injury that has stuck around for a frustratingly long time. Still, this kind of release is odd coming from a group who only recently debuted. I’m sure it’s designed to help maintain the momentum AB6IX have built since last spring, but for me it has the opposite effect.
The group will be releasing a music video for each of these five solo tracks, and first up is Moondance by main vocal Jeon Woong. Woong is actually my favorite AB6IX member, and helps bolster their ranks with a skilled set of pipes. Unfortunately, that voice is not well-utilized here. Moondance is musical murk, better suited as the backdrop for a special dance showcase than a full-on track of its own. Nearly the entire thing is slathered in stylistic autotune, which feels especially misused with vocals as a strong as Woong’s. It’s as if the creators realized the song wasn’t interesting enough on its own, so they threw all sorts of moody effects over the top in the hopes that they would distract from the thin melody and lethargic pacing.
When it comes to solo work, one hopes for the chance to reveal unforeseen aspects of idol performers. But, all Moondance reveals about Woong is that he could have been the eighth member of BTS. The phrasing here feels almost identical to something you’d hear on one of their albums – autotune and all. This isn’t automatically a bad thing, but it masks the character in Woong’s voice to the point where anyone could have performed this. He’s swallowed up by the foggy production, and without a memorable refrain to pull him out, Moondance becomes immediately forgettable.
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