EXO are one of my all-time favorite K-pop groups. In fact, much to my surprise they sit just below Infinite on this site’s “Bias List Scorecard” – a cumulative, weighted ranking of the acts with the most songs in my monthly round-ups. So, I say this as a major fan: EXO has some of the dullest solo releases of any major idol act.
Of course, there are exceptions, but it feels like almost every solo track has been lodged in the same downbeat energy. Even main dancer Kai debuted with the solid (but sluggish) Mmmh. I’m glad the guys seem to be given leeway to record the style of music they want. I just wish it had a little more oomph.
Shortly after his enlistment, Chanyeol’s Tomorrow offers a yearning message for fans eagerly awaiting his 2022 return. Pre-and-post enlistment songs can’t be reviewed with the same criteria as proper title tracks, since they’re as much about sentiment as they are music. And for those clamoring to hear Chanyeol’s voice, I’m sure Tomorrow will offer some comfort.
His tone fits this acoustic pop sound well, and Tomorrow is relentlessly pleasant. It has a warmth and resonance, even if the end product amounts to little more than a capper on this stage of his career. At just over two minutes, the track feels like something Chanyeol wanted to quickly get off his chest – almost like a demo or spur-of-the-moment live performance. In context, this sense of authenticity works well. As a K-pop release, free from the emotion of enlistment, I don’t see myself returning to it often.