Monday, December 11, 2017

Ranking Day6's Album Tracks

Oops, I'm an idiot and totally forgot to put this in here at the beginning when this was first posted. Anyway, today on my KPop channel, I posted a video ranking all of Day6's album tracks and even though I ranked all of them, I felt the need to write an entire post about it explaining my rankings. So, here we are. As I said in my Ranking Day6's Title Tracks post, Day6 is my favorite band and I legitimately love every single song they've released, but I apparently love to torture myself by forcing myself to rank them. IDK. 



Anyway, here are my rankings and explanations. Apologies for the long-windedness-- I really love this band. Also, the rankings are embedded above in video form, if you want to check that out as well. 
On to the list!

23) I'll Remember
As I've mentioned countless times in these rankings posts, I tend to lean toward more hype songs. And I'll Remember is a much more mellow, static track. Nothing wrong with that, and I still really enjoy it (obviously. I've said about a thousand times that I love every single Day6 song), but I just naturally lean toward other types of songs and therefore this one ends up lower on my list. And that hurts me, because I love it.


22) My Day

I can't re-iterate this enough-- this is a really beautiful song. It sucks to put any Day6 songs down at the bottom. I love the keyboard part, the really in-your face percussion, the little guitar slide before the end of the chorus, and the vocal parts. This is one of those songs that feels very familiar for no reason in particular. Overall, it's a great song that unfortunately just isn't quite as fantastic as some of their other songs.


21) I Would

The chorus of I Would alone almost made me move it higher, because the vocals (Jae in particular) really get to me. Jae's vocal scoops are so great and so pretty. I also love the dichotomy between the chill, acoustic opening and the build up to the electric guitar-heavy chorus. And then the post-chorus (is that even a term) with the call and response vocals is super fantastic as well. The only place it really loses me the slightest, tiniest bit is the chugging guitar in the 2nd verse. That's it. Overall, a really solidly fantastic song. 


20) Whatever!

Whatever! sold me from the very beginning with the keyboard intro and dirty guitar/bass. The little ascending melody that each of them sings as they enter is such a fun little theme to repeat throughout the song, and it's one of my favorite moments. The piano in the background is pretty repetitive, but I really love it. And as always, the background vocals are flawless. With Whatever! we technically get a chorus, but it's interesting in the fact that (to me) it almost doesn't even sound like a chorus??? Typically the chorus is the catchiest part of the song, and perhaps it's just the fact that Whatever! isn't a particularly traditionally catchy song in general (it's really not made to be), but the interesting thing about it is that the rest of the song almost completely outshines the chorus. It's actually kinda cool in a way.


19) I Wish

Once again, we've got a song that in some way sounds familiar (in a good way) to me. TBH I just think that it's that they pull influence and inspiration from many of the same musicians who I love. I know Brian likes PATD, and I'm sure that he was 100% into pop punk in HS, and I wouldn't be surprised if he still is now. Anyway, this isn't a pop punk song, but I can tell that they're getting inspired by other musicians that I also like. Once again, like some other songs that are early on this list, I think that the chorus is probably the least interesting part of the song. There's this really fantastic instrumental break near the end with a really cool guitar part and the verses are really interesting. It's a chill song in the best way possible.


18) Sing Me

I think this is the first entry on the list with a Brian rap. And for a good reason-- I love Brian raps. They're my favorite. Honestly, just anything Brian does. But I think that this is probably my least favorite of Brian's raps, which probably is one of the reasons it's a bit lower. Still love it, just not as great as his other raps. Anyway, there's a lot more to the song than just the rap. I'm realizing rather consistently that the post-chorus and subsequent second verse tend to be some of the most interesting parts of some of these songs. I love the "sing me!" at the end of the chorus. That said, I think the best part of the song is when everything except synth drops out and the whole group is singing. It's pretty great.


17) Colors

I feel like Colors is a fan favorite song, so I'm probably disappointing people by putting it this low. But you had to expect this, given my preference for hype songs, right? Colors is certainly one of their better ballads. Sungjin's gravelly voice works so perfectly on the chorus, and every time someone sings "colors" in the background, I get chills a bit. I also love that the vocals on the chorus are kinda soaring, almost uplifting, but tonally the verses are much darker. It's an interesting song and although it's on the lower end, it's still fantastic.


16) Goodbye Winter

The first time I heard this song, when I was still familiarizing myself with Day6's vocalists, I immediately had to look up the song to see who was singing the chorus because I was so impressed. I've talked a lot about soaring vocals and vocal scoops in this beginning section of the post, but I have to mention it at least one more time, because Sungjin's vocals are just so impressive. The gravelly vocal scoop on "go" is just fantastic and it's one of those musical moments that really stands out in my mind, even above some many moments in the songs above this one. 


15) Out of My Mind

The music of Out of My Mind is really boppy and lighthearted, despite the fact that the lyrics are a bit more emo (shocking-- Brian's lyrics are emo? WHAAAAT?). The melody that Brian sings throughout the verses has a really fun contour. I also love the guitar part in the chorus. It's a bit repetitive, but it makes me think of the types of lighter pop rock songs I would hear on the radio in high school. It's just really fun and boppy. *shrug*


14) Habits

I love the piano at the beginning of the song. Honestly, one of my favorite things about Day6's first mini-album is the piano lines. They're really great. But what really shines throughout the majority of Habits is the way the vocal lines are traded off and woven together in the verses. The second verse is especially great, with Jae and Wonpil paired off, followed by a brief rap from Brian. That, paired with Sungjin's vocals on the chorus is just really great.


13) Better Better

I found it really difficult to place the two newest songs within the ranking that I'd already established before they were released, but this is where Better Better ended up landing for me. The first time I heard it, I kinda expected it to end up slightly higher on the list, but this is where it ended up. The best part of this song is they're constantly playing with the rhythm and tempo. It's a really cool way to play with expectations, and it makes the song really musically interesting, because they're never letting you fully find your footing with a pattern. The guitar part is also especially fun for me, and I love the gang vocals. I also like the comparison between the more synth-based sections and the more guitar-based sections. It's really cool and really shows off Day6's composition abilities.


12) I'll Try

Speaking of Day6's composition abilities, I'll Try marks the first song without lyrics by Brian. It's also the 2nd Day6 song without music by Brian (the first being I'm Serious). And that really shows and becomes obvious very quickly because the fact that it sounds very different from any other Day6 song that has come before it. In terms of the actual quality of the music, it's at the tippy top of all Day6 songs. I'd verge on calling it a piece, not a "song." The piano part is incredibly musically interesting, and the piano solo and subsequent a cappella section are absolutely beautiful. Possibly the best-written section of music in any of Day6's music. Seriously. So... why is it all the way at 12? Personal preference. It's an absolutely beautiful song, but I've already driven my point about how I feel about slower songs versus more intense songs. I'll Try simply isn't going to get as much replay as the songs higher on this list.


11) First Time

To be perfectly honest, I literally just moved this into 11th place. As I was doing this write-up, I got to where it was at (#8) and realized that my love for the next few eclipsed it. So I slid it down a few slots. I think I was blinded by my love of Brian rapping at first, but regardless, I still really love this song. The fact that I can spur of the moment change my mind and re-edit the whole video (it's literally rendering as I type this) really just speaks to how fantastic every single song on this list is. They're all fantastic. Anyway, apart from Brian's super chill rap, my favorite part of this song is the very Beatles-esque harmonies that they have going on throughout the whole thing, especially in the bridge. I can't put my finger on what exactly about them screams Beatles to me, but if you listen to it, I'm sure you'll hear it. Maybe it's the intervals, maybe it's the production, maybe it's the swell & fall of the notes, IDK. But it's fantastic. Seriously, that last 1:30 of the song is really just fantastic. 


10) Man in a Movie

I saw a Tumblr post that described the poster's perceptions of the stans of each Day6 member, and one of the Young K perceptions was that they probably love Man in a Movie. As a Young K stan, I guess that's somewhat accurate, given that I do definitely love it, but it's only at 11 on my list. Either way, I feel like it slightly breaks my own preferences, as it's one of their less musically intense songs. But I have such a soft spot for Man in a Movie. It's got almost a bit of a 50s/60s vibe to it, and the chorus is just so fantastic with the background strings and vocals. And then there are some brassy sounds in the background and I'm still not sure if it's instruments or just Wonpil's synth, but it's so cool. It's well documented in these posts how weak I am for brass instruments. And they start out incredibly faint in the chorus the first time (you have to listen really closely to actually hear them) but by the last iteration of the chorus, the instrumentation is so full and the brass is really prominent. It's fantastic. And the outro with the violin (or synth violin? I can't tell) and piano outro is fantastic. It's a cool song. The more I gush, the more I guess that Brian stereotype is correct lol.


9) Say Wow

The dichotomy between the verse and chorus in this song is fantastic. The verse is all piano, strings, and vocals, and then it builds up to this really gritty, in-your-face chorus with intense brass, piano, guitar, strings, percussion... everything. It's so cool. Seriously, when listening to the song, put on earbuds and pay attention to the piano when it's in the background throughout the song. It's either chugging away, or (as is the case in verse 2) playing this really dramatic, quickly flowing part that's really just background noise to what's actually important. But it adds so much interest to the song even though you have to really listen to notice it. And then, the bridge. The beautiful, glorious bridge. The percussion takes over and it's almost a march, with a piano melody and brief intrusions from the guitar... before building again to the final chorus, where almost all the instruments drop out at the beginning for Day6's harmonies and the piano to shine. It's just really freakin' cool. Sorry I've been so heavy on the musical analysis for these past 2 but these songs are just so good. 


8) Be Lazy

I think we all know what the star of this song is. Let's all say it together: Brian's funky bass line. It destroys me right from the beginning every single time I listen to it. And the little "ooh, ahh" repeating theme is fantastic when paired with it. Apart from that, my favorite single section of the song is Jae's part in the chorus. His soft but jazzy vocals are just fantastic-- the moment that always murders me is his little lilt on "neowa-ah." It happens like 3 times throughout the song and it melts me every single time. I just absolutely love this song and if Day6 wants to tell me to be lazy, who am I to ignore them? haha


7) Lean On Me

Literally the second this song hit my ears, I was in love. As I've stated, I love pop punk, and the guitars in this song are pure pop punk perfection. Especially at the beginning of the song and in the pre-chorus. It was like All Time Low had possessed them during their songwriting process. I love how chill the verses are before building to that very pop punk chorus. Any time any of them sing "Lean On Me," it's absolutely beautiful. Often, with pop punk songs (or just any songs in general, tbh), prominent percussion is something I really love. But in Lean On Me, it's all about the electric guitar. Most of the song, the percussion is practically an afterthought, which I surprisingly really love. Even though their music is very pop rock/ pop punk, this is really the most pop punk they've ever gotten and therefore it's tonally very different from their other songs. It's really cool.


6) Like That Sun

Jae's rap in Like That Sun gives me so much life. This song is just a bop. That's the best way I can describe it. I absolutely love the back and forth in the verses, and the melody in the second half of the verse is super cool. And then in the chorus, all of the instruments come together to create near-perfection. The bass is so funky, the guitar is really boppy and fun, and the synth just brings it all together. Brian's rap bridge is fantastic, and then the ending with Brian's vocals and entrances from each of the other members is just really great. 


5) Pouring

I was wanting something really up-tempo out of Day6's November release. So after the slow, melancholy All Alone, the second I heard Pouring, I was in love. The percussion is so in-your-face right from the beginning, and the entire song has this throwback vibe to it that I absolutely love. I love the section in the pre-chorus where they trade off lines really quickly, and then... we get the beautiful chorus. The ascending strings are everything. I just love everything about this chorus. It's so great. And then the synth returns and the verse has this really fantastic guitar part and bass line. And I really can't stress enough how much I absolutely love the percussion in this song. It's not constantly changing or anything, and I guess it's technically not even that musically complex or interesting but it's one of those really great moments where you feel like you have to move, whether tapping your toes, stomping your foot, something. 

And then, in true Day6 fashion, we get this fantastic breath of silence and this really soft bridge which just explodes back into the chorus and it's just so good. But seriously, the strings are the star of the show in this song. At the very end when they've got the prominent melody, I'm living for it. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if I went to re-make this list after it's been out for longer and put it even higher. It's that good. For now, though, this is where it remains.


4) Freely

As we'll see happening a lot in these last few songs, the highlight of Freely for me... is Brian's rap. First off, this is the first song on Day6's debut mini album. And what a way to start. I love the back and forth in the vocal line in the verses. The timbral shift between voices is just really fantastic. And then the chorus-- definitely one of the most fun choruses in Day6's discography. There's that really interesting synth sound right in the middle of the chorus that's so cool. And the shift from the first half of the chorus to the second half of the chorus is fantastic. I love when choruses have vastly different sections (think Got7's Just Right- 3 very different sections to that chorus, all fantastic). And then... Brian's rap. I have no words. It's just fantastic. And then we get that same intense synth sound leading into the chorus... it's just so interesting and cool. And then in the bridge, everything drops out and slowly adds back in and the synth takes over. Freely is definitely one of their more synth-heavy songs and while I'm a lover of guitar and drums, this is definitely my favorite of their more synth-y tracks.


3) Hunt

Remember when I talked about how much I loved brass in songs? Synths re-producing brass instruments aren't quite as good, but they are in Hunt. I love this song so much. Jae & Brian's vocal lines in the first verse are fantastic, especially that falsetto, and my heart melts every time Brian sings "girl I can make you feel alive." The guitar in the pre-chorus is just so great and dirty and gritty and ugh I love it. And then everything builds up to the chorus.... and then just drops for Wonpil's "baby eodi" before jumping into this really in-your-face chorus with chugging guitar and percussion. And I can't tell if it's still Wonpil's synth or actual brass (guessing the former), but those brass sounds just really give the chorus so much more complexity of sound. And the brief guitar solo at the end of the chorus kills me every single time. And then, of course, the highlight... Brian's rap. I love every single time he rolls his Rs. Ugh I don't even know how to put it into words. Brian just has such a strong sense of rhythm and therefore he plays with it in really great ways and the fact that he's also a singer means that he's good at sing-rapping and I just really love him ok.


2) Blood

Despite the fact that it's in 2nd place, Blood has possibly my favorite musical moment in any Day6 song ever. Want to guess what it is? If you guessed Brian's rap, you'd be... mostly correct. In actuality, yes, it's Brian's rap, but also the fact that immediately after delivering my favorite rap in the entirety of Day6's discography... Brian goes directly back to falsettoing the chorus again. His rap voice is so much deeper and his vocal range can reach up so high, and I'm just impressed every single time. Sometimes I will turn on the song and literally just skip to that part to listen to it. I love it that much. His rap absolutely kills me. Once again, he plays with rhythm absolutely brilliantly, and his R rolls are really fantastic. Anyway, that said, the rest of the song is fantastic as well. 

One thing I've noticed in the billions of times I've watched this live, the instrumentation is really sparse. Typically, only one of the guitarists has to play at a time, and I find it fascinating that so many of Day6's songs have such thick textures and yet this sparse one is just as great, if not better. (IMO, it's obviously better given that I've got it at 2, but like... they're all fantastic.) Anyway, literally all this song has is some simple, catchy instrumentals and simple, catchy vocal lines. Even Brian's rap isn't like super intricate or complex or anything, it's just something simple and interesting executed perfectly. For me, that's like the tagline of the song-- simplicity, perfectly executed. 


1) I Need Somebody

Is there a single My Day who didn't fall in love with I Need Somebody immediately upon its release? Seriously, this song is... dare I say?... a masterpiece. I said it. It's brilliant. Two things that Day6 are masters at (that I haven't touched on too much here) are A- subverting the listener's expectations, and B- introducing new material every single time something is repeated. I'd have to go back through to confirm this, but generally in any of their songs, if something is repeated, even a chorus, they're doing something different with it the 2nd and 3rd time it appears (and often don't repeat something more than that). It's what makes their music so fascinating and musically interesting. And that's exactly what they do in I Need Somebody. Like with Blood, the song isn't incredibly complex. It's simplicity, executed perfectly by constantly subverting your expectations. I'll repeat: It's a freaking masterpiece.

So now on to the actual music. At the beginning of the song, it's simple piano and vocals. Soft, emotional, and seemingly leading us into a ballad. And then, with literally .5 seconds of any sort of preparation, suddenly we're at the chorus and Brian's giving us power vocals with acoustic guitar. It's such a tonal shift and done so brilliantly. But, by the end of the chorus, we've mellowed out into a really relaxed feel that's more expected of Day6 ballads. Sparse instrumentation, softer, more emotional, but still leaps and bounds different from where we were with the first verse. And as the electric guitar slowly builds, it's building expectation for the chorus, when suddenly... everything's gone and there are soft background vocals WITH A WHISTLE BREAK. A LITERAL WHISPER BREAK. This is what I'm talking about with subverting expectations. At this point, I feel like it's safe to assume that somewhere in the song, Day6 is going to give us a brief moment of silence (ex: the repeat of the chorus in Dance Dance with Jae's throat clear), so just the break wouldn't be that shocking. But... the whistles. It's so great.

And then, we get the full intensity of the chorus with electric guitar and all. If you thought the first iteration of the chorus was a shock to the system, this is even bigger. See what I said about changing it every single time? By the end of the chorus, we've come down from the intensity just a bit, but then the song transitions into the bridge, with vocals, light keyboard, acoustic guitar and these quick, almost spastic electric guitar intrusions. It feels so pop punk it almost hurts, and I love every second of it. And then, finally, into the chorus for the last time, and once again, it's different. The instrumentals will hit and then back off, giving intense emphasis on certain beats in the chorus rather than just chugging through. And then we get this great guitar outro, which is possibly the most overtly pop punk thing in the entire song, and then... Sungjin's vocals just fade out. 

I know that I literally just word vomited the entire song to you, but this serves two purposes.
1- although I've walked through some other songs on the list, I can't talk about them with quite the same enthusiasm or detail as with I Need Somebody. Proving that there was literally no other song that could take its place.
2- to show you just how brilliant this song is. It's so simple but also so complex. I literally cannot say enough good things about this song. It's so fantastic, and that's why it's #1. 
Also, I've gone this entire thing without talking about the lyrics of I Need Somebody, which are possibly the most relatable of any Day6 lyrics ever. Seriously, they hit home real hard. Brian knows how to write lyrics that hit me right in the feels. 



Anyway, there you are, my extremely long-winded, rambly ranking of all of Day6's album tracks, because I am absolute Day6 trash. Once again, I usually do a top 20 or so, but they have literally 23 album tracks and all of them are perfect, so I figured I would go ahead and do all of them in the ranking. I'm also considering doing a very quick ranking of all of Day6's songs (aka combining their title & album tracks into one list). Given that I've already talked your ear off about each list, I'd probably just literally rank them and not discuss them at all, so if that's something you're interested in, let me know! Also, if you haven't already, you can check out my ranking of their title tracks HERE.

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Friday, December 8, 2017

Ranking Day6's Title Tracks/Singles

I've done 2 previous posts ranking title tracks by a single artist-- one for Got7, and one for INFINITE. With this post, I round out my ult bias groups with the one whose music I most connect to.
My favorite band. 
DAY6. 
Day6 wasn't the first K-group I got into, but they're the one that I fell head over heels for the quickest. I've long touted McFly and All Time Low as my favorite bands, and I think that Day6 uprooted them in approximately two weeks. Seriously, I got obsessed quickly, because their music has completely blown me away. And now that they've completed their EveryDay6 project, the timing felt apropos to rank all of their title tracks. I ranked them all in video form, so if you want to see and hear the perfection, it's embedded below. This post really just serves to let me gush about my boys and how great their music is. 

As I say with every single one of these posts, this list is based on personal preference. Usually I give some disclaimer that I'm biased toward certain sounds/eras, but I really don't need to for Day6 because I love every single song they've released-- Album track, Title track, all of them. And I'm not saying this lightly. When I ranked these, I felt bad about putting any of them at the bottom because I have a deep love for every single one of these songs. I mean it when I say I've never connected to a band's music the way I have with Day6. Every single song on this list is perfection and it took me a literal MONTH sifting through these leading up to the release of Moonrise to actually get the bulk of this list in place. 

So, here they are, all 14 of Day6's FLAWLESS title tracks, ranked from "LOVE" to "I'm curled up in a ball sobbing because of how perfect this song is." (Day6's songs are so emo that they make me emo, y'all)


14) I Smile

Like I said, it hurt me to put I Smile all the way down at the bottom... but it hurt less than it would to put any of the others here, which is why it finds itself at #14. As you'll come to realize rather quickly on this list (or have already realized from my other rankings), I usually favor hype songs over slower songs. This isn't Day6's slowest song, but of their slower songs, this is the one that I find I've connected with the least. I think the chorus just doesn't grab me as much as other Day6 choruses. IDK, we're trying to rank perfection here and this is just the one that gets the least plays on my phone. Still love it, still listen regularly, just not as much as the rest. 


13) When You Love Someone

This one and the next one are essentially tied, but I put this one slightly lower largely because I think that the next song is slightly more musically interesting. For me, they have pretty similar vibes, they were released concurrently, and therefore I kinda lump them together. (IDK why I'm being vague-- I'm obviously talking about All Alone rn. You can probably see it on your screen right below this.) Anyway... this was my first comeback as a MyDay, and given how low it is on the list, you might think that it was a disappointing first comeback, but When You Love Someone is such a pretty song. It took a couple listens to really love it, but only a couple. By the next day, I was obsessed. It's slow, but it's beautiful, and I can literally hear Wonpil singing the chorus in my head as I'm writing this and it's just fantastic. 

12) All Alone

If you were to go through Day6's title tracks and pick out the one that's most different from the others, I think All Alone would be the pretty quick choice. They've released some album tracks that are super different from their usual sound (like the brand new I'll Try, which is still totally destroying me), but their title tracks all sound distinctly Day6. All Alone has a completely unique instrumentation (forget being a bassist or keyboardist, Brian and Wonpil are now glockenspiel & tambourine players, y'all). The song makes beautiful use of the guys' ability to harmonize and especially takes advantage of their really fantastic upper registers (bless Brian's massive range and Wonpil's high voice). Overall, it's just a really pretty song. Kudos to Brian for the lyrics and all of them to the composing. 

11) You Were Beautiful


I think I'm about to talk this point into the ground, but as I've already noted, ballads aren't always my jam. Literally. But of all the ballads, the best ballads are rock ballads. And Day6 loves a good rock ballad. And I love Day6's rock ballads. And You Were Beautiful is a beautiful rock ballad. All of the guys' soaring vocals throughout the song, and especially on the chorus, are fantastic. That's really the best part of the entire song-- the vocals. Not that the instrumentals aren't important, but the vocals are really what make the song what it is. They pack so much emotion into their voices. As I've mentioned in other rankings, I typically associate songs with one or two members of a group. For me, this is a Jae and Wonpil song. Their voices on the chorus are just so good. I've talked this into the ground at this point. Their voices are pretty. (Random side note, Jae mentioned on Twitter that "It Was Beautiful" is possibly a better translation of the title, and I move that we start calling it "It Was Beautiful" rather than You Were Beautiful).


10) I Like You

Some people might think that it's premature to try to rank this among Day6's other songs given that it was released approximately .01 seconds ago, but I found it fairly easy to place on my list. The songs in slots 8-10 are fairly interchangeable for me and have slid around several times in this general vicinity, but this is where I Like You ended up within that combination. I talked about the soaring vocals in You Were Beautiful, and IMO they're done even better in I Like You. Just the simple "I like you" line sung by Brian at the beginning of the chorus immediately sets the mood and makes your heart swell to match the sweetness of the statement. I like all of Day6's ballads, but we're getting into my favorites of their ballads. 


9) I Loved You
I originally had I Loved You in slot 7 but ended up moving 2 songs above it into the 7 & 8 slots, relegating I Loved You to #9. My feelings on the song are... complicated. I think that in terms of musical interest, this should probably be a bit lower on the list. Some of the songs I've already talked about are more interesting and complex than this one. However, I have a soft spot for I Loved You. Maybe it's that I've watched the music video countless times and love the storyline, or maybe it's simply that I've listened to the song so many times that it's totally grown on me. Who knows. Either way, it's one that I really have a soft spot for, but not quite able to get into the top half of the list. 


8) Hi Hello

Hi Hello is a beautiful song. Immediately upon hearing it, my mind goes to The Beatles. The harmonies and the dreamy, hazy, drowsy summer mood combine to easily recall that inspiration. Brian and Sungjin's "hi" notes (ayyyy hi, high, get it?... sorry, bad pun.)... anyway, their high notes are so soft and beautiful. Literally this entire song is just so soft and old-school in the best way possible. I don't even know what else to say about Hi Hello-- it's just a really really beautiful song with some fantastic vocals and perfect harmonies.


7) Letting Go

Of all of Day6's title tracks, this is the one that's grown on me the most. Admittedly, when I first began to put together this list, Letting Go was near the bottom. I still enjoyed it, of course, because all of Day6's songs are great, but it had never really grabbed me the same way as some of their other songs. I think this is partially because it's written to be atypical and therefore not as immediately "grabby" or catchy like some of their other songs are. The form of the song is very unique as well, not really following the standard, expected pop form that most well-known genres tend to follow. There are so many interesting sections of this song, my favorite of which is Brian's rap verse. Overall, it's definitely a grower, and the more I listened to it carefully to assess it compared to other Day6 songs, the more and more it climbed the list. It's truly one of their more musically interesting songs.

Side note, they released a re-booted version of this in 2017, and of the two I think I actually prefer the original. I have trouble remembering every single difference, but I like the structure of the original better. They're both great in their own right, but the re-booted version is a bit rushed for me.


6) What Can I Do

I've said it before, and I'll say it for the rest of my life-- I'm so weak for brass instruments. Not in the sense that I want to listen to Big Band music for the rest of my life, but if a pop or rock song has brass instruments featured prominently, I probably love it. It's one of the reasons I'm really falling in love with Seventeen, and it's one of the major reasons that Pentagon is one of my top bias groups. And it's one of the main reasons that I love What Can I Do. It certainly falls on the more poppy side of Day6's discography, and I kinda love that about it. The lyrics aren't necessarily fun, boppy, and cute, but the tune definitely is!



Very briefly, before jumping into the top 5, this section was the most difficult. I knew even before starting to compile this ranking that these would be the 5 at the top. They've been my clear set of favorite Day6 title tracks for quite a while. It's not that they're head and shoulders above the rest of the list or anything, but they're the ones that get stuck in my head the most, the ones that made me fall in love with Day6, and the ones that get the most replay. It was almost impossible to put them in order. Typically my problems are that I'm not sure whether a couple songs need to be swapped. In this instance, all 5 were being shifted all over the place. It was chaos. 

I say all this to say... these 5 songs are perfect. They're put in this order because I decided that they had to be put in an order, and this is the one that felt the most right. Either way, this is a pretty flawless set of songs. 


5) How Can I Say

I feel like this is one of Day6's most well-liked songs across the board. This sound that's much heavier on the energetic rock elements is a very specific sound that Day6 has only explored a few times, and hasn't explored since their early 2017 monthly comebacks, but it's a sound that they nail every time. It's often mentioned as a song that could be the opener for an anime, and that seems like the best way to describe it to me. It's so hype, it's so in your face. It's probably the hardest rock that they ever get, which admittedly isn't super hard, but it's a lot of fun and it's a sound that I really want them to explore more in the near future. 


4) I'm Serious

This is a classic case of Day6's fantastic harmonies, paired with a soft, throwback vibe. I'm Serious is musically very different from the songs released around the same time, and is another song on the poppier side of their discography. It's a really light, fun listen, paired with this really silly music video of the five of them being goofy. And for me, the best part of the song is the a cappella break at the end. It really once again recalls the Beatles vibe again, and that's something that I really love about them. And this song specifically. Plus this music video is just the cutest.


3) I Wait

You know those YouTube videos where they list the "killing parts in KPop"? If I were to ever make one of those (which I've considered), the #1 moment on the list for me would be Jae's vocal scoop at the beginning of I Wait. Not only is it the first thing you hear in the song, it's the first vocal line of the EveryDay6 project, and oh boy does it get things started beautifully. It's just so pretty. The more relaxed verses and their build into the really intense chorus is just outstanding, and the visuals in the MV are stunning as well. When I first ranked these, I had this in the #1 slot, because I genuinely believe this is probably the best title track they've ever released. But a couple other songs connect with me personally just a tiny, tiny fraction more, so those slightly edged it out. But this is an absolutely fantastic song and I don't think I'll ever get tired of it. 


2) Dance Dance

They've said that Dance Dance is purposely one of their less musically complex songs-- they want it to just be a fun song to jam out to. And that's exactly why I love it. First off, it might not be as intricate as some of their other songs, but there are several musically interesting moments in it. The song is pop punk perfection, and then the second verse.... goes into a reggae rap section?! It's such a distinct tonal shift but it works so well. And then, that brief pause before the last chorus it just so perfectly executed. It's absolutely fantastic. Also, I think I've gone this entire post without mentioning that my favorite genre of music since like Jr. High has been pop punk. So this is basically just right up my alley. Day6 executes this song so perfectly. In true Day6 fashion, whenever something is repeated, it's different upon the repeat. This is one of the reasons their music is so good. They're constantly changing things up-- subverting expectations. It's fantastic, and this song is possibly my most-played song by them. It's a huge burst of energy and I love every single second of it. Also, the music video is hilarious.


1) Congratulations

And here we are-- #1. When first getting into Day6, this was my favorite song by them. Then, I went through a period where I thought I maybe preferred I Wait. And now (for a while now), I've returned to Congratulations. I'm not sure that I could quite say that it's the song that's most representative of Day6 as a band (purely due to the fact that they explore so many sounds and therefore no one song can really be fully representative of them), but Congratulations really highlights my favorite things about Day6. The lyrics are as emo as ever (poor Brian and his emo lyrics-- who hurt you, boy?), the first verse is soft, followed by a playful second verse at Jae's part. And then the chorus-- ugh the chorus. It's Day6 at its finest, harnessing the sound of their rock ballads into a more intense, explosive chorus. Brian's voice is so beautiful and emotional on it, and every time he goes up into his falsetto, my lil heart melts. And then, of course, Brian's rap. Which kills me every single time, especially the little growl. Every single moment of this song just tugs at my heartstrings, and it's one of the major reasons I really fell in love with Day6. It combines so many of the great elements of their music into a single song, and I daresay it's a masterpiece.

Side note before I wrap this up-- like with Letting Go, they released a "Final Version" of Congratulations on Sunrise, which is essentially just the exact same thing except with Junhyeok's parts covered by other members. Personally, I prefer the Final Version, mostly because I really love Sungjin's voice on Junhyeok's parts. I'm sure fans who were around for OT6 were sad to hear his parts given to other members, but I've only been around for OT5 and don't have that same emotional connection to Junhyeok (although I of course wish him nothing but the best in whatever he's up to right now... I know he was on The Unit but idk if that's still happening rn).




Anyway, there you go-- my rankings of all of Day6's title tracks. Usually I only do a top 10 in video form and then do the whole thing on here, but given that there were only 14 to choose from and given the wrap-up of EveryDay6, I figured I'd go ahead and include everything. I love this band so much and I can't wait to see what they do going forward in 2018. It's going to be exciting and I'm sure I'm going to love every second of it. Let me know down in the comments which of Day6's title tracks is your fave, and keep your eyes peeled for my Day6 Album Track rankings, coming very, very soon. (AKA next week)


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Monday, December 4, 2017

Top 10 Songs November 2017

I'm back once again to talk about the songs I've had on constant repeat all month! This month was pretty tricky, and because of that the list ended up pretty different from previous months. This month, I found myself getting really into a lot of newly released comebacks/title tracks, and the list really reflects that, because over half of the songs on this list were released this month. Usually I end up with a couple extra songs before whittling it down to 10, but this time I started with about 17 songs. I seriously just listened to so much new stuff this month. There's a lot more variety than usual.

Per usual, however, there's still a section that's devoted to one group that I've really latched on to, but I've saved that for the end. As always, the last song on the list is the one where I've really, really abused the replay button, and for once, it's not a newly discovered song. But, we'll get there when we get there. And again, per usual, I'm still listening to the stuff from last month. Aight, no more rambling-- let's jump into the list.

Clap by Seventeen

Since I'm finishing the list with my most-played song of the month, I figured the best way to start the list would be with the new title track that grabbed me the most this month. And obviously, that was Clap by Seventeen. I don't think Seventeen has ever been featured on this list, but I've consistently enjoyed their title tracks-- just not enough to fully fall down the deep, dark, fandom hole. That is... until Clap. I'm so weak for electric guitar riffs in KPop songs. Include prominent guitar riffs and I turn into putty. I absolutely love it. But apart from that, everything about this song just fits together so well and works perfectly. The chorus is super catchy, and it's only made better by the super intense choreo that goes along with it. There's really not a dull moment in the song. It's so fun, and it's really the song that could make me fall completely in love with Seventeen. I've already started downloading more of their music and learning about the members, so I'm already well on my way. 


Dramarama by Monsta X

Like with Seventeen, this might be the song that makes me fall in love with Monsta X. Unlike Seventeen, I haven't been quite as infatuated with their past title tracks. I've liked the ones I've listened to (most notably, Hero), but I'm fairly certain I haven't heard anywhere near all of their title tracks. That said, this one blows all of the other ones I've listened to completely out of the water. I was already sold by the "Dramarama" that began the song, but then the chorus hit and it was just so catchy WHOA. And the verses are also super interesting. I'm pretty partial to the rap verse because both rappers sound really fantastic (I think the group has only those 2 rappers?? Not sure-- I haven't learned the members' positions yet), but honestly the entire song is really awesome. Also I'm 100% certain that a few times, they purposely say Dramallama instead of Dramarama. 


Shall We Dance by Block B

For the first 2 songs on this list, I was immediately sold and in love. For these next 3, the love was not immediate, but they really grew on me. That was especially the case with Shall We Dance. I've loved Block B's songs Her and Yesterday, and they're a group that I keep telling myself I need to listen to more. When I first heard Shall We Dance, I thought it might be the deal-breaker. I didn't love it. At all. I don't want to get into the cultural appropriation discussion about the video and the overall aesthetic of the comeback, mostly because I don't really think I'm knowledgeable enough to talk about it. Also, don't even get me started on the Kyung mullet because it's awful. All that said, the song itself (which has nothing to do with the cultural appropriation argument) is such a bop and eventually really grew on me. The falsetto was really jarring at first, but I love it at this point, especially in the second verse. And the chorus is pretty simple, but P.O.'s voice really makes it shine. His voice also sounds really great on the bridge at the end. It's really heavily edited, but it sounds fantastic. Overall, even though I was really skeptical at first, I've had this on pretty constant repeat for the majority of the month.


Peek-A-Boo by Red Velvet

Once again, I really wasn't sold on Peek-A-Boo the first time I heard it. I've enjoyed a lot of Red Velvet's title tracks (mostly the red concept vs. the velvet concept) and this one simply didn't grab me the first time like the rest of them have. I gave it about a week and then decided to re-listen after watching Umu from ReactToTheK's reaction, and that re-listen was what made me fall in love. It's still not my absolute favorite Red Velvet single (I think that still goes to Red Flavor), but ever since that re-listen, it's probably the song that I've replayed the most. So it hasn't been on a constant loop all month like songs like Dramarama or Clap, but it's been on an even more constant loop for the past week or so, and that makes it deserve a spot on the list. I haven't quite fallen completely in love with Red Velvet yet, but I downloaded Perfect Velvet and I could definitely see myself as a ReVeLuv in the near future.


Likey by Twice

I really wasn't expecting to like this song, but I'm not really sure why, since I've never just outright hated a Twice song. I don't really know how I feel about Twice as a group. I guess I'm kinda lukewarm? I love Cheer Up, but apart from Likey, that's the only song of theirs that I've actually downloaded. Their other title tracks are really catchy, and I like them, but I've never felt the need to download them. And on top of that, I place quite a bit of importance upon singers' vocal ability (because... they're a singer. Duh) and I don't think it's any secret at this point that the members of Twice just aren't great vocalists. I'm not saying this to hate on them, and I don't think that it should invalidate their success by any means, but it's just one of the reasons why I think I find myself fairly lukewarm on Twice overall. 

After all that rambling-- I definitely enjoy Likey... despite the fact that "Me Likey" is a phrase that I hope to never utter in public. It's just a bit cringey. I know I sound like I've been hating on them, but the rest of this going forward is positive, promise. The song is unbelievably catchy. I think Signal and Knock Knock from earlier this year didn't quite live up to TT or Cheer Up's popularity/catchiness, but Likey definitely does. It feels distinctly Twice, but in a very fresh and fun way. I've never been too enthralled with their rap sections, but I actually really like the way that it's handled in Likey, especially Dahyun's part. Overall, this really surprised me and I loved it.


Pouring by Day6

Yep, it's finally time for the obligatory Day6 song of the post. As EveryDay6 winds down, I'm finding myself much more drawn to the B-Side tracks than the title tracks, and that has held true for their November release (TBH it's only really been for Oct & Nov). That said, I also really enjoy All Alone and it was definitely a contender for the list. But I love all of Day6's songs, so that's not saying too terribly much. Anyway, there are several songs in Day6's discography that have a bit of a retro vibe to them, and Pouring is definitely one of them. Like Hi, Hello before it, Pouring has a bit of a Beatles vibe to it. Definitely a different era of The Beatles than Hi, Hello, but the influence is definitely still there. The chorus of Pouring is just so great. Apart from The Beatles, I can definitely hear the pop punk references in there too, which is definitely my favorite of the sounds that Day6 likes to play around with. And the strings in the background are EVERYTHING. Day6 loves their strings, and I love Day6's strings. 

IDK about y'all, but I'm really sad EveryDay6 is ending soon. I'm glad that they'll get to rest a bit from the kinda crazy schedule they've had this year (they deserve it!), but I've looked forward to new music from them every month, and the fact that we won't get that anymore is such a bummer. I'm hoping JYP gives them ample time to rest and then puts them on a comeback schedule similar to their dance groups (AKA a couple comebacks a year) because I don't want to go too long without new music from them.  


Runaway by Pentagon

It wouldn't be one of my monthly lists if a singular group didn't take up the majority of the list, and this month, it's Pentagon. Last month was when I really started falling in love with them, but November was when the obsession hit full-force. They've really become one of my favorite groups-- not quite to ult status, but pretty darn close. And that's why I was dying of excitement when they announced another comeback, marking their 4th comeback this year. Seriously, IDK how they're doing this. Demo_01 was my favorite of their minis to that point, so I was even more excited when the new mini was announced as Demo_02, another mini created almost entirely by the guys themselves. While 02 didn't quite live up to 01 for me, I do really like it and the title track, Runaway, has been on constant repeat for the last week of the month. I don't think it's their strongest title track (in fact, it might be my least favorite) but I love every single title track they've released, including this one, so that's not saying too much. Overall, it's a bop, and I've really loved listening to it. And TBH I'm already ready for another comeback. Keep 'em coming, Pentagon. 


Can You Feel It by Pentagon

Like I said above, I love all of Pentagon's title tracks, and Can You Feel It is no exception. Like Runaway, it's lower on the list of favorites, but I really warmed up to it a lot over the course of November. Honestly, I don't even know what to say about it that I haven't already said about Pentagon in the past. Their music is fantastic and I love their use of brass. So much brass. That said, it's on the same mini as Pretty Pretty, which I personally think would've been a better title track, because it's one of my favorite Pentagon songs, if not my absolute favorite. Either way, Can You Feel It is still a really solid song and I've listened to it so much this past month. Plus Yeo One is super prominent on it, which is a major plus for me specifically. 


Critical Beauty by Pentagon

As has happened a few times on past posts, this isn't a new discovery, but more of a re-discovery. In fact, it was actually one of the first KPop songs I really fell in love with. It took a while to get back around to listening to Pentagon, but I'm so glad I eventually did, given how much I obviously love them now. Anyway, even after all the other KPop songs I've listened to and all the other Pentagon songs I've listened to, this one still stands out as super different and unique. The whole reason it stood out to me originally was that they were sampling Elvis, and that was super intriguing to me. I'm not sure it's necessarily my favorite Pentagon song (the next song is pretty stiff competition) but it's definitely top 3. Possibly #1. IDK, don't quote me. Either way, I'm still kicking myself for not listening to more Pentagon when I first discovered Critical Beauty, because I did myself a huge disservice by waiting a full 3 months or so. 


Like This by Pentagon

When I was first legitimately dipping my toes into Pentagon's music back in early-to-mid October, I barely paid any attention to Like This. As I've probably mentioned on every single one of these posts, I tend to naturally lean toward up-tempo, more "hype" songs. So, when going through their title tracks, this one didn't really stand out on first listen. The fact that it started out on the slower side was just not something that made it stuck out in my mind despite the fact that it really builds quite a bit. After reading a review, I went back and listened again and found myself really falling in love with it, especially E'Dawn's rap (and Hui's "I got trouble" line), which is really dynamic in contrast to the rest of the song. Honestly, within a couple days, I went from mildly underwhelmed with the song to full-out obsessed with it. It's been on a constant loop ever since and it's definitely not only the Pentagon song I've listened to the most, but also just the song I've listened to the most over the past month. It's just a really beautiful song and if I were to make a list of my favorite KPop songs, I think this would make the list pretty easily. It's that good.





Like I do every month, it's time to reflect on last month's predictions and make some predictions for this coming month. Last month, I predicted that when I got to know the members of Pentagon, they would replace BTS as #4 on my list of bias groups (right behind my 3 ults). As predicted, that's what has happened. I'm not all the way through Pentagon Maker, but after watching a lot of it and listening to all of their music, I'm completely in love. They're not up to ult status, but they're toeing the line.

I also mentioned that E'Dawn was my bias but guessed that Yuto, Yeo One, Hui, Jinho, and Hongseok would be up there. That was mostly correct. In the month since, Yeo One has completely stolen my heart and is pretty firmly my Pentagon bias, with Hongseok, E'Dawn, and Yuto right behind him. So, overall I did pretty well but I named 6/10 members, so I can't pat myself on the back too much. That said, they're all absolutely precious and I love them and I wouldn't be surprised if they worked their way up to ult status pretty soon.

Ongoing, like I said, I think I'm falling in love with Seventeen. Like with Pentagon, I'm not sure that they're going to get all the way up to ult status, but I could definitely see them rising above BTS. IDK why BTS keeps being used as the group that other groups are compared to, but I guess they're just a group where I like the members & like their title tracks but I'm not fully infatuated with them. Anyway, I expect that by this time next month, I'll have downloaded a lot more of their music and will have a pretty solid bias. Right now, I think Woozi or Wonwoo is my bias. Woozi because he's the composer & seems to be pretty done with the members 24/7 (which I always find hilarious). Wonwoo bc I'm weak for brainy/bookish idols. S.Coups & Hoshi's visuals in the Clap MV killed me but I don't see myself biasing Hoshi. Maybe S.Coups. I'm also pretty drawn to Joshua and Vernon but IDK about that either. After all that rambling though, Woozi is the one who stands out most to me so he's probs my bias. IDK, we'll see. 



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