A K-pop act’s title track isn’t always the best song on their album, even if it’s the one most people will hear. Sometimes, b-sides deserve recognition too. In the singles-oriented world of K-pop, I want to spotlight some of these buried treasures and give them the props they deserve.
TXT have already broken sales records with their new album – a testament to the consistency of their music thus far. Still, with each year that passes K-pop has become more of a pre-order game. The majority of sales for most big albums occur before anyone has even heard the music, making the actual songs increasingly moot. I only mention this because I think “Minisode 2: Thursday’s Child” is one of the weaker TXT albums – perhaps their weakest overall. But it’s already a huge hit, and I can’t begrudge proven K-pop tactics. Preorders rule the day yet again.
The mini album is surprisingly downbeat, with most tracks either mid-tempo or straight-up ballad. The only moment of real release happens right at the end, as the unit song Thursday’s Child Has Far To Go injects a welcome oomph to the atmosphere. In what must be a new record, the song has a total of twenty (!) credited writers, including the group’s own Beomgyu and Taehyun. Those two, along with leader Soobin, perform Thursday’s Child with gusto. I’m assuming the fact that only three-fifths of the group are present probably cuts its chances of promotion. That’s a shame, because this is the best thing on the album and would have made a fantastic springtime single.
Thursday’s Child thrives upon its bounding chorus, which ties a catchy hook to a brilliantly icy synth line. I adore the little melodic flourish that takes us into that instrumental riff. It has the lilting wistfulness TXT have always executed so well. The verses are more forgettable, casting off familiar melodic turns (seriously… this took twenty people?), but even the song’s weaker moments are boosted by their potent energy. This would make a great soundtrack for driving or running, pushing you along with a sense of open road optimism.