They are back after nine months and they have broken records!!! I’ll talk about that at the end. I originally put it at the beginning but man I had a lot to say so… at the end.
First let us talk about the music! (I’m singing that sentence btw… it’s important you know that.)
Their title track is Ridin and it is not what I expected at all. Well, it is and it isn’t. I knew it would go hard but I didn’t expect the harmony.
The song flows very well, the transition from going hard to harmonising breakdowns is seamless. And honestly the bits where they slow things down are my favourites in the song. It just adds flavour.
I didn’t expect to love the song as much as I do. I expected that I would like it, but love it… my love took me by surprise.
As for the music video it was good and it fit the concept well of them being a lil gang, dancing in their secret den and riding tricked out motorcycles. Omd, imagine if they did a Infinite Chaser and got to ride them!! Idea for the next music video.
Although I was expecting to see scenes at the industrial site that they filmed teasers in but I guess that was just a teaser site.
The fashion is very street and wearable. I could see them wearing this on a normal day, just hanging outside with friends (ah those were the days). Although some of the outfit choices are fancier and sexier. I mean Jaemin is wearing a whole see through shirt in one of the ensembles. Does he ask for the sexy fit or do they just give it to him? With each comeback I’ve noticed his fashion is getting bolder and sexier.
The lyrics convey what I expected them to convey. They express the change they are going through as a group and how they will exceed expectations and reach their goals. They are creating a path for themselves.
Honestly I am 100% satisfied with the title track.
Now to talk about other songs on the album…
Quiet Down is the next song and it is also a song they are performing at music shows. I guessed they would from the mini music video they made for it as it was the only one to have choreography.
It’s a gritty song and that suits the lyrics and message of the song. They’re basically saying don’t spread rumours and lies. The song reminds me of the saying, “If you ain’t got nothing nice to say then don’t say anything at all.”
So literally, quiet down. It’s simple, direct and to the point.
Next is 7 Days. It’s a classic romance song. It’s pretty cute and smooth sounding. It was also one of the first that got stuck in my head, not in a bad way but I found myself singing it at odd moments. That means I like it.
Oh and Jeno’s voice in this song? I mean he’s singing in almost all of them but in this one… um!! It’s so rich and deep, in a different way from Jisung’s. A new flavour I enjoyed listening to.
As for the lyrics, they talk about wanting to spend time with whoever their crushing on or dating. I think they’re dating. Anyway yeah they want to spend time with them, as much as possible HOWEVER they make it a point to ask if the person wants that too. Like, “this is what I want but what do you want? Tell me please”.
I quite like that. In relationships communication is key folks.
Now my favourite Love Again. It has been my favourite from the beginning. I just love the 90’s sound, that beat and the singing! Yes! It’s right up my alley.
When I watched the V Live countdown and they talked about this song there were no subtitles but I think they said something along the lines of this one completes the set of My First and Last and Bye my First (please correct me if I’m wrong, my Korean is still improving). When you look at the lyrics that makes sense.
Speaking of which, I thought they were saying that they’re rediscovering their first love and falling in love again. They also sound confused, like, “How can this be? How am I here again?” But they’re not mad at it because now they understand their feelings better and the person’s feelings better.
So they’re wiping the slate clean or the slate has been wiped and they’re starting again.
My favourite lyrics are:
‘From my head to my toes it feels like I’ve taken a shower in flutters.’
Whoever wrote this I love you! I love this line!
Last but not least is Puzzle Piece. Jaemin and Jeno took part in writing the lyrics of this song. It’s the slowest on the album and so we end things on a chill and peaceful note.
It’s a ‘what you see is what you get’ type song. The lyrics are just what you would expect reading the title. They talk about someone being their missing puzzle piece making up for their short comings and making them feel complete.
It could be looked at romantically, like the missing piece is a boyfriend/girlfriend, or platonically, a friend, or in terms of NCT Dream it could be Mark is the missing piece (as mentioned in the V Live) or fans are the missing piece. They said it’s fans but I honestly think it’s probably each other. They seem to have a strong friendship and they weren’t looking forward to being split up so I can see it being a platonic love song. We need more of those, platonic love songs.
I have a lot of favourite lyrics:
‘And somehow you’ve become my everything’
‘More than having everything, not losing that one thing is more important, through you, I came to know that’
‘It becomes one scene inside the world that I’ve been trying to put together alone’
‘Like the hands that are interlocking tighter together, because without you it can’t be completed’
An A+ album honestly. I love all the songs (Love Again just a tad bit more). It appears I’m not the only one who was happy with the title track and the album because they debuted at four on the melon chart and then moved up to number one, a first for any NCT unit.
They are the first NCT unit to debut at one on the US iTunes chart and they gained three million views on their music video in one day (currently they’re at 15M).
Those are big achievements especially considering this comeback was probably not planned. As you know, or perhaps you don’t, NCT Dream was supposed to be a unit for teenagers. So when a member reached the age of 20 in Korean Age they would ‘graduate’ from the group. I guess SM planned to add members to fill the gap of the graduated members. Kind of like After School but not.
The problem was last year four members were due to graduate (Jeno, Renjun, Jaemin and Haechan) and would have left two members behind, meaning it would either have been a two person unit or new younger members would have joined. Can you imagine Jisung and Chenle going back to singing a ‘Chewing Gum’ esque song?
Anyhow that didn’t happen, the fans wanted a fixed unit where no one left like NCT 127 and they sort of got that. Before this comeback they announced that NCT Dream would be a rotational unit like NCT U but with the members of Dream including Mark who graduated in 2018 (I look at Mark’s schedule sometimes and panic… but apparently he’s a workaholic so if he enjoys it that’s fine… but still rest from time to time).
How that will pan out we will see but it is a much more certain future for the Dream members than before. I always worried about Jeno, Jaemin and Jisung, like where would they go? Would they become solo artists after their graduation?
Honestly SM keeps trying to make this graduation system happen but it never works (ahem Super Junior 05… did you know they were going to change Suju every year till fans protested it?). In the words of Regina, stop trying to make it happen! It ain’t gonna happen!
Rant over, they’ve done well despite all the confusion and I’m proud. This is my first comeback with NCT Dream and I am thoroughly enjoying it. Yes, I made the right choice stanning them.
How about you, what is your favourite song on the album (if you have one)? What’s your favourite mini music video or just your favourite moment this comeback?