The popular K-Pop group, Monsta X, is making history by releasing a full length album entirely in English.
Typically, K-Pop groups will release the Korean version of their songs first and maybe translate their title track song, but Monsta X produced and wrote a full album of English songs.
Every track on their latest album, "ALL ABOUT LUV," is centered around love, hence the title; however, each of the ten songs focus on different aspects of love.
They address the ideas of real love, infatuation, and heartache through various styles of music, and to make it even more fitting, the album was released on Valentine's Day.
Despite the fact that Wonho, one of their members, left the group last October, he is still featured in every track of this album.
I truly admire Monsta X for creating this album all in English. I.M is the only member that can speak fluent English, and the other members are not unfamiliar with the language, but singing in a language you don't regularly use is a difficult task to accomplish.
In Zach Sang's interview with the group, the members discussed how pronunciation is the hardest part for them when they are recording, but honestly they all sound fluent. If I didn't know who they were, I would think they all could speak English.
I recommended this album to a couple of my friends, and they all were shocked or amazed at how the group could sing in both Korean and English with it sounding natural.
I personally listen to K-Pop because the sound of the genre is enough to pull me in. I don't know Korean, but if I can enjoy the song for the vocals and the flow that's enough for me.
Now don't get me wrong, I value lyrics. One of my favorite things to do is looking up the lyrics of these songs and finding out what they're about. Reading the translations only makes the song even more meaningful to me.
No other K-Pop group has ever tackled creating an entire album in English, so I think Monsta X deserves a lot of recognition for "ALL ABOUT LUV".
I want to make it clear that I'm in no way devaluing other K-Pop groups because they haven't created English content; I listen to K-Pop in the first place because I like the way it sounds.
I will continue to listen to and support numerous groups regardless because I enjoy listening to songs in Korean, but I admire Monsta X for wanting to challenge themselves by writing and singing in a totally different language.
As I mentioned above, this album has ten songs, but I want to talk about my personal favorites from the tracklist.
One of the title tracks for this album is "WHO DO U LOVE?" featuring French Montana. This song first came out seven months ago, and it discusses how love can make a person so anxious that they become obsessed.
This song, as well as, the other nine tracks are very different from what Monsta X typically releases and they talk about this with Zach Sang. The group continually brings up that this album expresses a separate mood from their Korean albums.
Monsta X says that they wanted to create "ALL ABOUT LUV" in English because the language is softer than Korean. For an album about love, they believed the softer tone of English was more fitting.
I immediately enjoyed the sound of "YOU CAN'T HOLD MY HEART". The song's bass and drums takes on a slower pace than most of their other tracks, but the vocals delivered by each member give it a strong feeling that I associate with more upbeat songs.
"SOMEONE'S SOMEONE" has to be my favorite song overall. From the harmonies to the meaningful lyrics, this song hits different when you actually listen to the lyrics.
The chorus, "We all wanna be someone's, wanna be someone's someone," sung by Kihyun and I.M first appearing at 0:34, is something everybody can relate to.
If you don't typically listen to K-Pop, I highly recommend listening to this album. Since it's in English it will feel more familiar and comfortable, but the vocals of the group might lead you to their other work.
Even though this album is sung in English, the talent of the members may encourage you to broaden your music taste and give K-Pop a try.