The boys of PENTAGON (펜타곤) have finally made their comeback in the K-pop scene with their 11th mini album, titled “Love Or Take”!
If you’ve been a die-hard Universe (as fans are lovingly called) from the very beginning, you’d probably know that the Cube Entertainment boy group is well-recognised for their unique take in approaching a wide variety of concepts in their comebacks and performances, in addition to the members’ talented composing skills.
The members performed two songs from their latest EP, “Do Or Not” (title track) and also “Baby I Love You”, live for the first time at their online showcase held earlier on Monday (15th March). Another interesting thing to point out is that, this comeback also marks the first time the group is promoted with only 7 members, as two other members of the group. Jinho and Hui are currently serving in the army.
During an interview with the press about their comeback album, the members shed light on how they felt promoting without the elder members around, their signature ‘PENTAGON musical style’ and more. Check it out:
1. This is your first album after leader Hui’s enlistment. Could each of you share your thoughts on promoting as 7 members?
Wooseok: Honestly, it still feels awkward that Hui is not by our side. I’m still getting used to it. I will try to make myself feel more comfortable about it through this promotion.
Shinwon: Since we are missing the eldest member and the leader at the moment, we felt the need to have a different kind of mindset for this promotion. We will always remind ourselves that not everyone who wants to be a part of the promotion can always participate in it, and each of us will work harder to do 1.5 person’s worth.
Hongseok: Obviously, they were the key members for us. So we can’t help but to be conscious of their absence. But in terms of performance, we will present stages that won’t let you feel their absence.
Kino: Our average height actually increased! Just like our new average height, we will also show you our heightened abilities.
Yeoone: Many of the people who love us are worried about us. For us, this is the kind of promotion where we want to make our brothers, Hui, and Jinho feel relieved and think, “There is no need to worry, they’re too good there is nothing to be worried about,‟ when they see our performance. We will work harder than ever so Hui and Jinho can be proud of us.
Yuto: All performances always left me with regretful feelings. With this promotion though, I will work hard to leave no regrets and wrap it up healthily.
Yanan: Although we can’t be with HUI and JINHO right now, the seven of us will work hard to make up for them. Please look forward to it!
2. Although some of your members are enlisted at the moment, you are still consistently promoting without a hiatus, as you fairly have a large number of members. When are some moments you feel the missing members’ absence regardless, and how do you build your teamwork again in those moments?
Shinwon: The moments we could really feel their absence were during team meetings and practices. It used to be very crowded when we practiced, but now that there are only seven of us, it feels somewhat empty all the time. I keep thinking, ‘Why are we missing a person?’ Since we’re missing the eldest and the leader, it feels like we lack a shoulder to lean on. But this won’t make us weak. To make our bonds stronger and let them come back strong, we got ourselves team rings.
3. Your new title track “Do Or Not” is a PENTAGON-style refreshing track, following the footsteps of “Shine”, “Naughty Boy”, “Spring Snow”, and “Daisy”. How would you describe ‘PENTAGON-style freshness’ in one phrase? Also, what are some strengths and stand-out points you would like to point out?
Kino: In one phrase, it’s like a Sprite Zero drink. It’s popping, refreshing, cool, and even tasty like Sprite. But it’s healthy because it’s “zero”. That describes “PENTAGON-style freshness” well. The strength and stand-out point is that we work on every part of the process including music, performance, and concept together with professionals because we know what fits us best. Crafting the best fit for us with our own hands is our strength. We think that only we, PENTAGON, can pull it off.
4. You’ve come back with a ‘refreshing’ and ‘cool’ concept this time around. In your opinion, which member fits this concept the best? Also, what are some special efforts you made to pull off this concept?
Yuto: First of all, I would like you to look at Yanan today. He has two bunnies with him — one is Jinho (eldest member) and the other is Hui. I choose Yanan as the one who pulls off this concept the best. My role in the music video was a cool guy, so I grew out my neck hair. I think this makes me look cooler than how I looked in the previous concepts.
Yanan: I will choose Yuto then. There are many things to compliment him on. First and foremost, he is a hardworking person. I’ve never seen him on a break. He is always at the studio or doing something. I just think he deserves a lot of respect. For everything from mentality to looks, this Japanese friend of mine is a great guy.
5. What was the thought process of coming up with these three concepts (Romantic, Sporty, Mild) in your comeback?
Yeoone: The straight-out-of-a-comic-book concept was a strong candidate since the beginning of the creative process. We contemplated on how we should approach the comic book concept and what would make the audience like it more. From there, we thought of the three concepts; Romantic, Sporty, and Mild.
These three concepts contrast with each other, but the seven of us also add very different colours to these concepts. So, we thought we would be able to show some diversity if we went forward with it. We were also excited to think that Universe would enjoy it a lot, so we went right with it. As for me, I would say I pull off the Romantic concept the best.
6. Team leader Hui and Wooseok contributed to the creative process of your new title track. Are there any memorable moments from the process you can share? How satisfied are the other members with the title track?
Wooseok: I slept less for about two months to work on the title track and the B-sides. The rest of the members dedicated a lot of their efforts as well. There was this one time when we got really exhausted, we gathered at a studio, put a random beat on, and cyphered to it.
We had about 10 to 15 minutes to write our own lyrics, got together, recorded it and listened to it together. Shinwon, Kino, Hui, and I were there for this. It really helped us shake off the stress and we had so much fun with it, so it was very memorable.
Kino: That was on New Year’s Day!
Yanan: I think the bright and refreshing concept of “Do Or Not” is perfect for us. We should be able to show everyone each of our charms through our performances. I would give it 110 out of 100, since this is our 11th mini album.
7. In the midst of lots of boy bands putting out ‘hot and spicy’, fierce music, it’s interesting to see that PENTAGON is consistently releasing music of their very own color. What is ‘the kind of music the group can do best’ in your opinion, and what motivates you to persistently continue to pursue your musical style?
Kino: It’s a little challenging to define the kind of music or genre PENTAGON can do best with a single word, since we make very diverse music, concepts, and lyrics. But if I were to talk about what “PENTAGON-style music” is, I would say the strength of our music is that you can feel the scent of our efforts from our music.
Our aim is to make people think, “This is definitely the kind of music only PENTAGON can do,” when they pull our music out and listen to it again after a long time has passed from now. We will keep giving our best until we achieve it. Our driving force certainly is the Universe.
8. You guys will be celebrating your 5th anniversary as a group this year. Now that you’ve achieved first place on a music show and have won various awards, what is your next goal moving forward?
Shinwon: We actually have many goals. Our 5th anniversary is coming soon, but our aim is to keep moving forward gently, slow and steady, without losing energy, until the time makes a fifth anniversary feel like nothing.
Enjoy the full music video here:
Images courtesy of Cube Entertainment.