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The Duality of Seventeen

Since entering the K-Pop scene in 2015, 13-membered group SEVENTEEN has had a ton of success with their title releases. As time has gone on, I’ve noticed that the group tends to aim at two different types of concepts, usually interchanging between each comeback. Have you noticed this too?

The Soft Side

The group debuted in 2015 with the soft, pure concept of “Adore U,” where the boys were even adorned in white outfits to highlight their innocence. At the time of debut, most of the members were still underaged, so this was a natural angle for Pledis Entertainment to go with the boys at the time. Who wouldn’t fall in love with these cute little angels?

With high energy like debut track “Adore U,” “Pretty U” follows along the soft path by showcasing the members’ boyish charms in the music video. “Pretty U” is a fun and uplifting song that is reminiscent of carefree youth, with that imagery only further highlighted by the scenes in the video. At the time, it had only been a year since their debut, but the boys were just as cute and angelic as before!

A more mature but still soft concept, “Don’t Wanna Cry” sprung the boys into the spotlight for their many talents. The song takes a very different tone from any other release from the group, highlighting teenage heartache and anguish. Though this concept is a total 180 from not only their usual bouncy and energetic releases, the group proves their versatility by performing it unspeakably well. I feel like my sons grew up right before my eyes.

The Hard Side

Second title track “Mansae” was the turning point for me. The group took on the school boy concept early and got it out of the way, since it’s a concept just about every group takes on now or later. But why is “Mansae” placed on the hard side? The song goes OFF, not to mention the dance is something else. If you’re not up and ready to shout (see what I did there?) after watching SEVENTEEN perform “Mansae,” then you must have not been paying full attention.

Ah yes, my very favorite release. “Very Nice” immediately reminded me of “Mansae” the first time I heard it, with a bit more of a powerful musical switch at the chorus. The strong and loud, jazzy melody is unexpected at first, to say the least, but that doesn’t stop the song from being catchy. “Very Nice” is also the famous “suspenders dance” that gained the group a bunch of recognition. “Very Nice” goes hard from the moment the song starts, certainly earning it a position in the hard category!

Newest release “Clap” adds a new style to the mix of music SEVENTEEN has covered, with the main attraction of the melody being the electric guitar. Much like “Very Nice,” you know you’re in for something intense the second the song begins, and that’s certainly not an exaggeration. It seems as if the group’s choreography gets more complicated with each release, and “Clap” has the most fierce moves so far. There’s no doubt the boys will have you shouting “짝, 짝, 짝!” by the end of your first listen.