Review

Buried Treasure: Seventeen – Domino

Seventeen - DominoA 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.


Seventeen’s newest album maintains the strength of their discography, even if its singles are a mixed bag. At only nine (short) tracks, it lacks the heft that characterizes most full albums, and its biggest strengths lie between track three and six. I could have chosen any of these songs to write about (March nearly nabbed the honor), but after a week I’ve settled on Domino simply because it sounds the most like summer.

Tons of boy groups are peddling this sort of slinky bass hook, but most of their songs lose energy and momentum when the bass gets going. Domino is smart to shift this trend. The first part of its chorus feels like your standard beat drop placeholder, but the percussion soon speeds as guitar joins the arrangement. This echoes the structure of the verses, which almost feel like call-and-response. A hesitant melody is answered by a soaring refrain that really opens up the track.

This constant push and pull makes Domino a real treat. Its hooks aren’t as sharp or rollicking as Seventeen’s best work, but the arrangement is tight and exciting. The track gains renewed life during its final minute, as that aforementioned guitar becomes a bigger part of the mix after a glitchy breakdown. Domino even embraces elements of complextro here – a genre I’d love to see more K-pop acts attempt.

 Hooks 8
 Production 9
 Longevity 8
 Bias 9
 RATING 8.5

11 thoughts on “Buried Treasure: Seventeen – Domino

  1. Another b-side track which sounds like a pure title track. Alas, unfortunately, the producers undermined the guys’ talents again by choosing that dull, irritating Hot as a title track 😡

    Okay, I’ve had enough with raging. Regarding the song itself, I love it a lot. 8.75 for me.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is my favorite song on the album (also IU’s, if you’ve seen her episode of Palette with SVT as guests). I love the production on this, it reminds me a little of Electric Hearts by WayV.

    After a week of HOT promotions, I can see why it was chosen as the title track. The performances have all been great, and keep one looking forward to who’s going to show up sleeveless or in a mesh shirt.

    Now going to go look up what complextro is.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yesss, electric hearts is so good. The bouncy synths/bass in both that and Domino just carry you along so fluidly.

      Like

  3. Production wise, I enjoy this but it’s completely devoid of any engaging melody so it just ends up being boring. March or Don Quixote for me. Weak album in general though.

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  4. domino is my favorite on the album but honestly don quixote, march, shadow and even darling (it was a grower) are all easy 9’s. as of now i still think i prefer your choice, but face the sun is much stronger than their other 2020/21 releases. with the exception of the title track and one or two b-sides attacca really didn’t age all that well for me, same with heng:garae and semicolon.

    i’m still not a fan of hot, it’s just not my type of music, but the rest of the album is really good and they’re actually doing some fun promotions this time around, so i’m not mad at this comeback. they’ve also been teasing a july repackage and i hope they pick a slightly less abrasive title track for that.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. This album really surprised me by being one of my favourite releases from them even though the title tracks are both subpar. Don Quixote, March, Domino and Shadow (a nice callback to a more classic seventeen sound) are all excellent.

    Like

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