With each new Universe release, I debate whether I should keep writing about these tracks or simply treat them as their own sort of b-side. After all, you can’t really consider them a “comeback” — especially since the full music videos are limited to the Universe app. And, none of the songs so far have felt like anything more than extraneous advertisement. But, I’ve been impressed with the company’s ability to secure a-list talent in both performers and producers.
Outerspace brings together Kang Daniel and Loco — a “It’s Dangerous Beyond the Blankets” reunion of sorts! Given both of these guys’ quirky personalities, I would have loved to hear them tackle a song just as unique and charming. Instead, Outerspace hinges on the same kind of funky bass guitar that’s driven so much of K-pop this year. It’s never an unwelcome approach, but the track doesn’t do anything new with the sound.
Still, it’s nice to hear Daniel’s voice on a more upbeat track. His last few efforts have been more emotional affairs, but Outerspace is pure fun. It’s limber and spacey, bringing a dancefloor drive that will likely get your head nodding. Loco’s verse is also enjoyable, and keeps the momentum going rather than switching up the tempo. However, Outerspace misses the chance to seal the deal with a killer chorus. Instead, the track retreats to a series of loose, forgettable refrains, matching the groove rather than leading it. This creates a vacuum at Outerspace’s center, just as it should be pushing forward with renewed intensity.