By: Kya Brodgon | 30, January, 2023
After finishing out their world tour and multiple award show performances, Tomorrow X Together has made their first comeback of 2023 with the first installment of their new series: The Name Chapter: Temptation. Composed of five songs and a collab with Coi Leray, The Name Chapter: Temptation shows how Tomorrow X Together continues to experiment with new genres and sounds while still keeping its roots strong.
The title track, “Sugar Rush Ride,” does not sound like what one would expect based on the title alone - in the best way possible. The beginning is bright and catchy like the name suggests, pulling your attention immediately, but the change-up comes in the first pre-chorus when the song introduces a hypotonic backing melody along with alluring vocals sung by members Choi Yeonjun and Choi Soobin. “I can feel 거부할 수가 없어 / 달콤한 그 devilish smile / 넌 능숙히 잠긴 내 문을 열어 / 어떡해 저 별이 보여 / The devil said” (translation: I can feel it I can’t resist it / That sweet devilish smile / You open my locked door so easily / Oh my, I see the stars / The devil said”). These vocals are followed up by an addictive use of an anti-drop chorus, “Gimme gimme more / Gimme gimme more / 이리 와서 더 / 같이 놀자 더” (translation: “Gimme gimme more / Gimme gimme more / Come here (more) / Let’s play (more)”) creates an ear-wormy hook that makes you want to keep the song on repeat for the rest of the day.
Another stand out song is the collab with Coi Leray titled “Happy Fools.” This song is a fun change from the first two darker-style songs on the EP. Like the title suggests, the song is an upbeat happy sounding song about following your own path in life and being happy with whatever comes. Leray’s airy rap in the second verse gives a new depth to the rest of Tomorrow X Together’s vocals and also gives some satisfying and fun rhymes for fans to sing along with (my favorite being: “I take a trip from Cali (Mm) / Now my Rollie on Korean time”). It’s obvious that these artists were excited to collab as well, given the multiple cross-platform posts about the song release from both Tomorrow X Together and Leray.
The most unexpected song, at least in my opinion, is “Tinnitus (Wanna Be A Rock).” This song is influenced by Afrobeats and is an exploration of a new sound we haven’t really heard from the group before. And they absolutely nailed it. The soft build-up of melody at the beginning leading into Yeonjun’s ad-libs and Kang Taehyun’s soft vocals in the first verse is so pleasing to the ear; it makes me want to start the song over even before it’s finished. We know already that Tomorrow X Together kills it with upbeat, bright concepts as well as rock songs and slower ballads, and I love seeing that this trend continues in the new genres they are exploring as well. At this rate, the only thing they can’t do is release a bad song.
Overall, I think The Name Chapter: Temptation is the perfect album to start this new series in Tomorrow X Together’s discography. And by how many records it’s broken in the first few days since release, it is obvious that not only fans, but the general public agree. With a rumored tour on the horizon, I can’t even imagine how hard it’s going to be to get tickets now that they are skyrocketing even higher in their success than they have before.