Many fans have wholeheartedly indulged in ENHYPEN’s Carnival, buoyed by the energy of title track Drunk-Dazed. But while I enjoyed the song initially, I’m finding myself less inclined to revisit it as time goes on. Oddly, the aspect that bugged me most upon first listen (its heavy vocal effects) is hardly an issue anymore. Now, it’s the repetition in the chorus that grates. But, the nice thing about groups from HYBE/Big Hit is that they often promote follow-up songs in case you don’t quite connect with the main title.
ENHYPEN have now moved onto Fever. Unlike Drunk-Dazed, it’s a moody, languid affair. The vocal effects are still alive and well, but the pace is slowed and the song feels much more sinister. Hazy synths join a listless beat, and the melody has a creeping structure that emphasizes the vibe. I don’t find the track particularly engaging, but that’s likely a symptom of my personal taste rather than Fever’s musicality.
Still, I wish Fever would kick into gear and do something more compelling with its mood. It nails a certain “after the bacchanal” atmosphere, which works well in the context of the album. On its own, the song just thumps along, revisiting its central hook without bringing additional elements to the table. Coupled with the vocal effects, which remove most character from the guys’ performance, Fever threatens to fade into the ether. It’s not unpleasant nor enticing. It simply hangs in the air, hazy and aloof.