Review

Song Review: BTOB – The Song

BTOB - The SongWith their new album Be Together, BTOB join the ranks of post-enlistment boy groups. Not every act makes it to this point, with all current members back together after years of service. The album also follows last year’s Kingdom competition, where members Eunkwang, Minhyuk, Changsub, and Peniel showcased the group’s range and versatility.

With that in mind, I’m a little disappointed that BTOB have returned with a ballad. I mean, it makes sense. This sound reinvigorated their career back in 2015, and felt like a fresh new avenue for their talent. The problem is, the guys haven’t yet matched the potency of It’s Okay (a tough challenge, to be fair). At this stage in their career, BTOB’s music has the potential to feel a little fuddy duddy, and I would have loved to see them branch out again and deliver something unexpected.

The Song (노래) is as unassuming as its vague title. It’s a fine example of this midtempo, sentimental sound. BTOB give it their all, as they always do. I like the blend of vocals and rap, particularly during verse two. But, the song feels very targeted to fans of this style. There’s not much to grab onto for the rest of us. There’s no dynamic climax or memorable hook. The Song just swirls around the same light groove for four minutes. As a co-composition by newly-returned member Lim Hyunsik, I appreciate the weight of emotion fueling The Song’s existence. But, his own solo work hinted at much more interesting compositions. Here’s hoping this new stage of BTOB’s career results in the adventurous spirit that first won them chart success.

Hooks 7
 Production 7
 Longevity 7
 Bias 7
 RATING 7

18 thoughts on “Song Review: BTOB – The Song

    • Have you listened to the whole album?! My Way, Whiskey, Dance With Me, Higher?! These have a great R&B funky groove. Their strength is ballads bcz they are #1 in that department. But the other songs especially Whiskey and Higher show their versatility like we heard during Kingdom. I believe they sent a hidden message with The Song not only to Melody but to Ilhoon. They list all the songs in it that made them famous that he was a part of. How can they possibly sing anything without thinking of him?

      Also, I love that they are growing out of their K-Pop phase into a more mature sound in their…after all they are MEN who served in the military proudly. Give the WHOLE album another listen a few times before making a final judgement. It will grow on you as it has on me 👍🏼❤️

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      • I don’t think you really know btob at all. I only found them last year and I seam to know more then you. First, just because they went on kingdom they shld change and become like every K-pop act? That’s what your opinion sounds like. I think this a great album with message to all Melodies, fun, sexy, and has rock feel. You name it this album has it. I don’t think you really listened to the WHOLE album. Maybe you shld.

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  1. Yup, without the vocals this is completely… forgettable. [pained noises] The album does have some great gems tho (Higher especially) so I wish they picked something more energetic for the title too.

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  2. Sadly I have to agree with you. I found BTOB through Kingdom, and instantly became Melody. I went back through their catalog and have found numerous songs that I absolutely ADORE. I thought Outsider was fantastic and a nice change from their ballad style, and was expecting more of that with this comeback. “The Song” is nice but it’s not going on any of my regular playlists…

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  3. As a Melody, to be fair, I was a little surprised they choose this song as a title track, as there are other more ‘interesting’ songs to choose from the new album. But as the English sub came out, I can see why they have chosen The Song as their title track. The song was a love letter to Melody.

    It’s not about popularity. At this point BTOB has grown to mature artists whose main goal is to give back to their loyal fans. A 10 years celebration indeed of BTOB and Melody.

    Regardless, I am a happy Melody.

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  4. The purpose of this comeback is to ‘show off’ their vocals, which I think is great.
    Kpop these days has the tendency to go over-the-top concepts/choreography, it’s about time for this kind of music (ballads) to exist. Not every Kpop listener is a 15-year-old or 25-year-old. Mature people also need some new music to listen to! 😀

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  5. I feel like if the first full btob comeback in four years and their 10th anniversary track was anything other than a ballad the Korean public would have hated it.
    But how do I feel about The Song itself? It’s missing the explosive adlibs of It’s Okay, and the catchy singalong style that was Missing You. But repeating a successful style leads to stale music.
    I feel like the highlights of The Song is the interplay between the singers and the rappers in the pre chorus and the beautiful build up at the end where it drops everything and brings in Hyunsik first. It’s mature and lovely. As a fan song and an anniversary release it’s one of the nicest I’ve heard.
    As a title track wanting to go daebak? Probably not the right choice, but I feel Btob are past that now.

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    • Totally agree with you . The whole album is just lovely but lack of the “something” that we used to hear. Of course, ilhoon have a kind of magic to bring so many elements into the song he composed. Just went back to the old btob songs, you can find it was different. HA HA, THIS IS THE CHARISMA OF Jung ilhoon . He not only have the stunning appearance , he absoutedly does have the talent. No one can deny that. He proved it. 🙂

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    • I don’t think you really know btob at all. I only found them last year and I seam to know more then you. First, just because they went on kingdom they shld change and become like every K-pop act? That’s what your opinion sounds like. I think this a great album with message to all Melodies, fun, sexy, and has rock feel. You name it this album has it. I don’t think you really listened to the WHOLE album. Maybe you shld.

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  6. I think it is true that BTOB has lost some trust among domestic fans in Korea. Military leave, Ilhoon incident. The public of Korea listened to BTOB, not because they were a ‘melody’ per say, but because they produced consistent music of their unique style. Then ever since Ilhoon’s incident broke out, they dropped songs like ‘Missing You’ out of their playlist. Commented that they will never listen or support a BTOB song ever again. Called names such as ‘drug-idol’. You have to understand that Korea’s view on drugs is extreme – it is one of the worst crimes.

    So I take ‘The Song’ as a way of thanking Melodies for staying with them (for those who stayed that is). All those song references confirm this.

    ‘The song’ only one day after it’s release, has hit #1 on Genie, Bugs and is also charting relatively high on Melon (suspected to rise after promoting more this week). Show Your Love, Outsider did not chart high in Korea. Heck not even ‘I’ll be Your Man’ – the song that every international fan seemingly loves never charted high in Korea. They have no reason to promote faster tempo songs if it makes no money. It’s all about money.

    I don’t think Cube has any intention of promoting the boys internationally either. They’ve been in the industry for 10years and still haven’t gone on a world tour. So I also see ‘The Song’ as a way of trying to appeal to the Korean audience again, since it is in a style they love.

    I know that many international fans have joined the fandom due to Kingdom. And are upset they don’t come out with more ‘K-pop like’ songs. Please understand that ballad type songs are what BTOB does best.

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    • That seems weird to me even not knowing BToB that well, and coming to like them through Kingdom, cause everything they did was mid-tempo or balladic. They even slowed down Back Door to great effect.

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  7. Desde mi punto de vista es una muy buena canción desde como fue realizado el video y la buena distribución de líneas, creo que a muchas personas no le ha gustado “the song” porque están acostumbrados al típico y pegadizo ritmo del k-pop, sí btob tienen canciones también muy pegadizas y han demostrado su versatilidad pero más que nada querían dedicar este álbum a Melody.

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  8. I like their ballads, but this is no Missing You. I hope they get a nice, meaty song soon. i haven’t listened to the album, but hope there are a couple of good Bsides.

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  9. Totally agree with you . The whole album is just lovely but lack of the “something” that we used to hear. Of course, ilhoon have a kind of magic to bring so many elements into the song he composed. Just went back to the old btob songs, you can find it was different. HA HA, THIS IS THE CHARISMA OF Jung ilhoon . He not only have the stunning appearance , he absoutedly does have the talent. No one can deny that. He proved it. 🙂

    Like

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