In a world of the glitz and glamour of K-pop, it can be quite suffocating to keep up with the constant beat drops and throbbing bass. If perhaps you would like to venture into this colourful entity without approaching tracks with rather aggressive techno beats or saccharine sounds, the answer to that lies in the lesser explored world of idol bands. One in particular seems to be standing out these days.
Day6, an idol band under JYP Entertainment, has been on the rise recently. Debuting in 2015, the quartet consists of leader Sungjin on acoustic guitar and vocals, Jae on guitar, YoungK on bass, Wonpil on keyboards and synth, and Dowoon completing the circle with drums (past member Junhyeok left in 2016).
With only 2 full length albums and 3 EPs, the band has already established a name for themselves in the scene. Despite growing at an alarming pace in comparison to their other label mates such as TWICE and GOT7, Day6 has a charm that only few can truly appreciate.
1. The use of their trademark harmonies
Echoing with the nostalgic elegance of rock ballads, Day6 has a rather unique colour to their sound. What makes them stand out in particular is their use of harmonies in songs, adding a special touch to each track. Layering each song beautifully, Day6 seem to have a trademark style when it comes to this. The band does not disappoint with their incredible vocals either; Sungjin’s husky crooning complementing Jae’s smooth and stylish sound, while Wonpil’s clarity balances YoungK’s deep rapper voice.
With a talent for stringing mere words together into beautiful melodies, the ever talented bassist also writes and composes a majority of their tracks. In an industry where most idols have songs given to them, it is something Day6 can wear with pride on their chest.
Day6’s sound is one that constantly evolves. Debuting with rock ballad “Congratulations”, the band made their mark with the powerful heartbreak anthem. “Letting Go” was equally as impactful—or if not, better. Aching with the pain of moving on, the harmonies of the track got many interested in the band.
Then came the introduction of their “Every Day6” project, where the quartet released two new songs every 6th of the month. Here was where we could truly see Day6’s versatility—first by catching the eyes of many with the edgier rock tracks “I Wait” and “How Can I Say” but somehow transforming completely with slower, emotional numbers like “You Were Beautiful”, “Hi Hello”, “I Loved You”, and “When You Love Someone”. The band also has a fun, pop side to them, evident in the catchy “Dance Dance”, “What Can I Do”, and “I’m Serious” but brought something new to the table with the angst and emotionally raw performance of “I Need Somebody”. Catering to all the senses, Day6 has proved themselves to be a flavourful band with something to please everybody.
4. “Shoot Me: Youth Part 1”
Recently, the band has been on a rise with their latest release of “Shoot Me”—a jarring difference from their previous comeback of the emotional ballad, “I Like You”. The EP, “Shoot Me: Youth Part 1” further emphasises how versatile Day6 is with their genre—constantly experimenting with different sounds but never straying too far from their true selves.
In fact, both “Warning!” and “Shoot Me” stand out from each other despite being of similar sounds. The effortless harmonies in “Warning!” does indeed catch one off guard, but serves as a brilliant exposition track—giving the listeners a little caution before launching into the title track. “Shoot Me” starts slow, with an almost teasing fashion before its hard hitting chorus and addictive ‘Bang, bang!’ refrain. With such a catchy chorus, it’s hard to keep oneself from singing along.
Day6 shows their rocker sides in “Warning!” and “Shoot Me”, but it’s in the remaining tracks that truly stand out. “Feeling Good” is an amazing blend of fun guitar riffs and strings, all which lead to a pop like and almost indie rock chorus—indeed making it a feel good track. “Talking To” almost transports one into a different time, with a scooped up sound that makes one feel that you’re travelling in a tunnel.
The retro sound and the use of synth add to the atmosphere as well, tingeing with nostalgia of a time once loss. A personal favourite, “Somehow”, is also not one to be skipped. Beginning with a rather hopeful tune, it slowly turns into an emotional chorus that makes one yell from the top of their lungs.
Day6 just seems like the gift that keeps giving. The group has also recently released a Japanese album, titled “Unlock”, for fans with a taste of J-rock. With them constantly catering to the different audiences; creating soft soothing sounds, hard hitting anthems, rock ballads and so much more—they are definitely a band to pay close attention to.
Currently on tour for the first leg of their world tour “Youth”, let’s hope next time they’ll pay Kuala Lumpur a visit!
Article by Leyasheena Panicker.