Moonrise: The End of an Era
One of the most ambitious projects in music this year has now come to an end. DAY6’s yearlong project Every Day6 concluded on December 6 with the release of their second full album Moonrise, marking the end of the band’s monthly adventures.
Similarly to Sunrise, which came out in June of this year, Moonrise comprises all of the Every Day6 singles from July through November, in addition to the December title track and not one, but two new B-side tracks. To top it all off, the physical album also contains all the songs from The Day, DAY6’s debut mini-album, entirely re-recorded into their “final versions,” with the exception of “Congratulations” which already figures on Sunrise.
Moonrise is in many ways different from Sunrise; while the June album did show DAY6 taking more risks with their writing, Moonrise gives way for more complex composition and even more thought put into the lyrics. Young K, especially, stands out as an incredibly skilled writer, with many of the best lyrics on the album credited to him.
Oh, DAY6, “I Like You”
The closing title track of Every Day6 takes the form of a rock ballad in the lovely “I Like You.” It sounds like your typical full-band ballad performance. Opening on Dowoon’s drumming, the rest of the members don’t waste time before joining in. One thing that stands out is the repetitive chords on the piano; they rarely vary, only shifting between the same two or three throughout the entire song. Some might see this as worryingly redundant, while others (like me) find it grounding, giving the song a steady base. Sure, it’s not mind-blowing, but it isn’t bad, either. Another strong point is the chorus—again, though not outstanding, it has a familiar melody that gives it a comforting touch (just like the lovely, romantic lyrics). The belted vocals of the chorus are also quite nice, as DAY6 definitely doesn’t lack in talent with their voices. Young K’s and Jae’s parts were my favorites, though Sungjin stuns with the slightly raspy quality of his tone, providing even more emotion to the lyrics with his delivery alone.
The Music Video: A Happy Love Story
The second half of Every Day6 saw the band take on a continuing story arc through their music videos for the months of August, September, and October. While we would’ve liked to know more about that story, the December music video doesn’t follow the same narrative but rather tells a wholesome story of its own. We see a girl working her shift at a coffee shop, seemingly located in a corporate building with wide windows showing a stunning cityscape. Her friend (soon to be boyfriend, maybe?) decides to confess to her in the most grandiose manner: we watch him as he prepares his surprise throughout the day until evening comes and he throws a giant heart down the building, reading the words “좋아합니다” (“I like you” in Korean). The girl watches, smiling, as it glides down the window of her coffee shop. Cute, isn’t it? All the while, DAY6 performs in a series of stunning settings, dressed to the nines in chic-looking coats and turtlenecks, completing their final performance on the rooftop of a building with fireworks lighting up the night sky in the distance. Cinematography: 10/10, for sure.
Moonrise, a Bittersweet Goodbye
Moonrise is both a blessing and a curse—a blessing, as there isn’t one song that isn’t deserving of praise in its tracklist, but also a curse, as it very much signifies the end of Every Day6. As we listen to all 13 tracks on the album, we’re left wondering, “What now?” Hopefully, 2018 is as filled with creativity and musical goodness for DAY6 (and their fans) as was 2017.
Some songs definitely stand out, as they have every month they came out; namely, both November songs, “When You Love Someone” and “I Need Somebody,” are absolutely stunning in their lyrical sincerity and the emotion they carry through the melody alone. “Hi Hello” and “I Am Alone” count amongst the best ballads released by DAY6 through this project, while “Pouring” and “Whatever!” definitely bring out the best of the band’s composing genius with varying structures and surprising hooks.
However, one contender for the best song on the album might be one of the two brand new B-sides, “Better Better” and “I’ll Try.” “Better Better” is a typical rock song DAY6 has been renowned for all year (and even before that). But “I’ll Try” is a remarkable surprise from the band—it’s a ballad, a real ballad, one like they’ve never done before.
Credits show Wonpil took part in both writing and composing the song—might it be one of his preferences? Who knows, but the song is definitely suited for him, both for his skills as a vocalist and as a pianist. The piano leads the melody, joined by an acoustic guitar and subtle bass and drums. The focus remains on the vocals, climaxing into a stunning a cappella segment near the end, where Wonpil is once again in the spotlight while the other members harmonize with him. You will get chills listening to “I’ll Try,” especially at the end. It’s the perfect way to close Moonrise, with one of the best tracks DAY6 has ever released.
“I Like You” Title Score: 7/10
Music Video Score: 8/10
Moonrise Album Score: 9/10