Almost exactly a year after they released “Really Really,” one of the biggest songs of 2017, boy group WINNER is back with their second-full length album. The 12-track “EVERYD4Y” contains more new music than we’ve gotten from WINNER in nearly four years, and it confirms that the introspective, wistful WINNER of 2012 is long gone. Last year’s string of tropical singles that followed member Taehyun’s departure from the group established a new, carefree concept for the group. While title track “Everyday” detaches (well, slightly) from all that tropical house, the chill vibes haven’t gone anywhere. Plus, the song’s as solid as WINNER’s music has ever been. Its success, both musically and commercially, prove that WINNER is without question one of K-pop’s top boy groups today.
“Everyday” is one of those songs whose beat can go either way—you can dance to it in a club, but you can also fall asleep to it while lying on the beach or something. It follows YG groups’ typical sweetly synthy pop approach, but its fluid bass and trappy sounds introduce a new dynamic energy that throws some staying power behind the catchiness of the vocal melodies. And boy, are the vocal melodies catchy. You’ve got this great prechorus—love Jinwoo’s part—and then you dive into a chorus where the tune is simple as pie, but any potential dullness is combated by a clubby vocal distortion. It’s automatically memorable, and it’s easy to sing along to besides.
The title track is backed up by an album that goes so deep it’s actually a little surprising. What’s even stranger is that although the genre doesn’t once vary significantly, the songs on the album never blend together. You know how sometimes, after the first time you listen through a record, you can’t remember which song was which when you next come back to it? Especially with albums this long? “EVERYD4Y,” though never strays far from mellow mid-tempo pop, catches your attention all the way through. “Hello” could have titled, “La La” feels like “Immature” Part 2, “For” is so pretty it’s loop-worthy. The waltzy rhythm of “We Were” can break hearts, and “Luxury” goes off, in a chill WINNER kind of way. In most cases, what makes these songs so good is not groundbreaking production, but strong composition and clever songwriting. These elements were at the core of WINNER’s best music at debut, and it’s gratifying to see them surviving the changes of the past few years.
EVERYBODY: KAYBOP OR KAYFLOP? Bop!
Take a look at WINNER’s “Everybody” MV below: