Nehal Tambe, Mumbai, Maharashtra
NCT or Neo Culture Technology, a K-Pop boy group under SM Entertainment are known for their unique concept of having unlimited members in a group who are further divided into different subunits under the brand NCT. Back in 2018, the group started with the Yearbook concept project wherein all the subunits come together as one single group. 2020 marked the group’s 2nd time to do so, where the mega yearbook project was titled NCT2020, this time with 23 members namely Taeil, Doyoung, Jaehyun, Taeyong, Ten, Mark, Yuta, Winwin, Haechan, Renjun, Jeno, Jaemin, Chenle, Jisung, Johnny, Jungwoo, Lucas, Kun, Xiaojun, Hendery, Yangyang, Shotaro, and Sungchan.
Released on 12th October 2020, their 2nd full-length two-part album titled RESONANCE with Pt.2 being the repackaged version of Pt.1, released later in November 2020. What’s unique about this album is that the entire album consists of different combinations of members within the unit named NCT U including NCT127, NCT Dream & WayV. This album has set new records for NCT on music charts. So, here’s a review of why NCT2020: RESONANCE is one of the best releases of the year 2020. The review is based on the Pt.2 version of the album.
The first track is 90’s Love, and as the name suggests is an old-school 90’s Hip-hop styled track with members Mark, Jeno, Haechan, Ten, Winwin, YangYang & a new member Sungchan. This song will remind you of the ’90s for sure with a little “Neo” element. The second track on the album is Misfit performed by NCT rappers Mark, Jeno, Johnny, Taeyong, Hendery, YangYang & Sungchan, which is an old-school full rap track that talks about breaking societal stereotypes and being a “misfit” in society. This track reminds us of 00’s rapping style.
The next track is called Raise the Roof, an electro music track high on EDM, but also has a very contrasting bridge which is signature to the NCT’s music performed by members Johnny, Hendery, Jungwoo, Kun, Jisung & Yuta. Volcano is performed by the famous Boss unit of NCT U consisting of Jaehyun, Doyoung, Taeyong, Winwin, Mark & Lucas. Volcano is said to be a sequel to Boss, due to its similar Hip-hop rhythm which is one of NCT’s most famous tracks.
The next track Light Bulb, will bring you some contrast as an R&B track. The song talks about a relationship that goes on and off like a light bulb. Apart from the metaphoric creativity, the song is also interesting because of how raps by members Taeyong & Sungchan combine beautifully with the soothing vocals of the vocalist members Kun & Doyoung. The next track is Dancing in the Rain, another R&B track that contrasts the previous track by being a very bubbly track that might brighten up anyone’s mood, sung by members Yuta, Johnny, Taeil, Xiaojun, Chenle, Hendery, Jungwoo & Kun.
The next song is a personal favourite called My Everything performed by the trio of main vocalists Renjun, Xiaojun & Taeil from NCT Dream, WayV, and NCT127 respectively. The song is a love ballad that shows NCT’s beautiful vocals that contrast from the “loud” music as people often mistake them as.
Next is Make a Wish, the first title track of Pt.1, consisting of members Taeyong, Doyoung, Xiaojun, Jaehyun, Jaemin, Lucas & new member Shotaro. The song itself is catchy along with its signature whistle sound and Hip-hop beats featuring Arabic-styled costumes & Bollywood-inspired dance moves. The song created a record by becoming SM Entertainment’s 1st MV to cross 100 million views on YouTube in the least amount of time. NCT Dream, one of the fixed subunits of NCT, comes with the next track called Deja Vu, which is an electro music-styled song; signature to NCT. The song talks about living the memories again on stage indicating member Mark‘s return to the group after the removal of the graduating system NCT Dream had before.
WayV, the Chinese subunit, is next with their track Nectar, which is a very distinctive track as it is the only full Chinese track in this K-pop album. It has a sensual vibe to it with mature lyrics. NCT 127, another fixed subunit of NCT, brings the track Music, Dance, an upbeat dance track that can set the mood right for a party or some fun. The next song on the list will again take you to another perspective of NCT’s diverse musical style. It’s called Faded In My Last Song, another R&B track with a rainy day mellow vibe. It is performed by Ten, Yuta, Johnny, Jisung, Renjun & Taeil, who bring a totally different vibe from the rest of the R&B tracks on the album.
Next up is From Home, a track worth listening to because of its uniqueness which can only be done by NCT due to their widespread ethnic backgrounds. The noteworthy feature of this ballad is the beautiful merging of Chinese, Japanese, English, and Korean in one single track with lines sung by members of respective ethnicities. The song talks about finding a home away from home. It describes NCT members who come from different countries, away from their homes and find a home in their members and team here. It is a happy emotional ride describing the group’s message that their fans are their home too and vice versa. It is also the 2nd title track of Pt.1 performed by the vocal line Haechan, Renjun, Taeil, Yuta, Kun, Chenle & Doyoung.
The next track is the second title track from Pt.2 called Work It, a song with EDM and Retro Pop feels. It’s a classic dance track that will take you back in time. Performed by Johnny, Jungwoo, Yuta, Hendery, Jaemin, Ten & Jisung. The song is upbeat and will definitely be a party hit. The next one is All About You, a fun Retro Synth Pop track that has 80’s music vibes. This song features the new NCT members Sungchan and Shotaro. The last song on the album is I.O.U performed by Taeyong, Doyoung, Kun, Shotaro, Jisung, YangYang & Chenle. It’s another chill and lovey-dovey R&B track. There are other tracks on the album too such as the English version of Make a Wish, From Home (Korean version) & trendy and cool Interludes like Interlude: Past to Present and Present to Future, and an Outro called Dream Routine.
With a whopping number of 21 tracks with all different genres & varied musical expanse, the album became one of the bestsellers of 2020 setting a record for NCT and is definitely worth listening to, eradicating the misconceptions about the group’s musical potentials & variety. NCT units coming together itself is a celebration and an album with a song for every mood. Being a full package, it deserves the praise it rightfully received.
What is your favorite song from this album? Tell me about it in the comments below!