The effects of military enlistment have resulted in numerous side projects for DAY6. Their sub-unit Even Of Day has released two albums, and now it’s time for the group’s bassist to embark on a solo career. Young K has long been a prominent songwriter within the band, almost ensuring his own work will carry a similar sound. And though Guard You (끝까지 안아 줄게) could have fit on any DAY6 album, it’s streamlined through Young K’s vision.
I don’t listen to a ton of rock music these days, but it became my preferred genre in the mid-2000’s when the indie rock scene was flourishing worldwide. It’s a sound I absolutely love, but its building blocks are the same as any genre. A dynamic arrangement – centered by a great chorus – is critical. With this in mind, Guard You doesn’t do much for me.
The song’s opening verse borrows the plodding energy of an Imagine Dragons song (a band I can’t stand), tossing in a few trap influences to match the times. The second verse expands upon this, offering greater drive. These segments resolve in a beautiful pre-chorus, as Young K’s vocal swerves downward in grungy atmosphere. But, I find the actual chorus too monotonous. The melody has a droning quality that drags rather than lift. I admit this is my musical preference poking through, as I’d be tempted to call this style of rock “dirge-like” when others can’t get enough of its cathartic emotion. Fortunately, Young K’s ferocious performance elevates most moments.