NCT borrows romance of the past for new album

AP – Mega K-pop group NCT is not playing around. Two years after releasing their debut album, the group featuring 21 members of NCT 127, NCT Dream and WayV – as well as newcomers Shotaro and Sungchan – is launching into a sophomore effort with a third project expected later this year.

NCT – The 2nd Album Resonance Pt 1 skillfully combines a ‘90s R&B vibe with a more modern, electronic sound, leaning into the romantic boy band-ness of it all, with piano ballads showcasing the various members’ beautiful voices.

Lead single Make A Wish (Birthday Song) reels in the unsuspecting fans with its catchy whistle beat, but the rest of the album pulls the rug and revels in its retro-ness with a slew of only slightly modernised raps and R&B bangers; Volcano, Lightbulb, From Home and Faded In My Last Song lead in this category.

Misfit is a classic, energetic rock tune that echoes its title in sound; Déjà Vu has a futuristic dance beat; and Nectar introduces a compelling if strange, wounded-animal trombone-like sound.

Overall, the hook of Make A Wish (Birthday Song) sums up my feelings about the album, “I can do this all day.” But so does the song’s English version, “I can do this all night.”