Finding the Way “HOME” to JBJ95
Two more boys of JBJ are officially joining the music scene! Kenta and Sanggyun announced a few months back that the two would debut together as a permanent duo, later gaining the name JBJ95 in tribute to their roots, much to the delight of Joyfuls. The two debuted with mini-album HOME, a seven-track album that invokes the coziness, comfort, and warmth of its namesake.
The Title: “HOME”
“HOME” is one of the most EDM-influenced tracks on the album, which is to be expected of a title track. Sanggyun surprises by opening the song with his own singing verse, contrary to the expected rap he’s known for. The somewhat gloomy start has a sharp change when the beat drops at the chorus, but it somehow works out fairly well. Sanggyun and Kenta have found a way to blend their styles together in a way we didn’t see in their time as JBJ, which makes this debut track even stronger. Is “HOME” the best track on the album? You’ll have to wait and see.
Visually, there’s a very creative story being told throughout the music video, along with stunning visuals easily given by the duo. There’s a sense of listlessness in the visual story as the two search for the way home, with that home clearly not being a literal place but a state of being. The choreography shots stand out against the story greatly, with large flashy movements to a higher tempo compared to the often slow motion shots of the boys in the story portion. That contrast makes for an interesting and visually intriguing balance, giving the music video its own flavor, quite different from what we saw from their original group.
There’s really no beating around the bush here; I absolutely adore this album. The B-sides offer a more relaxing R&B sound than the title, fitting not only the current season but the warm sense of coming home. Warm and bright just like the sun, HOME begins with the track “LOVE DIVE,” a song reminiscent of True Colors that will bring a sense of returning home to Joyfuls. After that is the title, and then we have “됐어 (STAY),” a chill hip-hop track that even featured a cute video shot by the duo directing the fan chants.
Marking the halfway point of the album is a delightfully light acoustic track “생각나.” The song has a more cheerful tone that reminds me of two boys sitting under a tree with falling leaves, one singing to you and the other strumming his guitar. It’s quite heart-fluttering when you picture it, no? “거울 앞에; before the show” follows in sound and feeling, and then we head for the end of the album with the last two tracks, “꿈에서” and “오늘밤.” We get a taste of vocalist Sanggyun once again in “꿈에서,” another great showcase of how well the two blend their unique styles. The song also has a bit more of a mainstream pop sound, but it still maintains its relaxing atmosphere. HOME concludes with “오늘밤,” which has a similar sound and feeling to the previous track and leaves the listener content and warm.
The sound of the album aligns exactly not just with the title, but with the visual teasers that were released as well. For Joyfuls, listening to this album definitely felt like coming home from a chilling day back to a cozy familiarity provided by Kenta and Sanggyun. It’s been awhile since I personally felt such comfort from an entire album. I do believe the title is the weakest track on this album, but that doesn’t mean it’s a total miss. If you’re looking for a nice listen to fit the chilly weather, be sure to check out JBJ95 and support the duo going forward!