PENTAGON Delivers “Genius” New EP
On March 27, boy group PENTAGON released their eighth mini-album Genie: Us. Led by title track “SHA LA LA,” Genie: Us adds yet another layer to the group’s evolving, distinct sound, setting them apart in an industry saturated with big-name boy groups.
The boys waste no time with this release, starting things off immediately with “SHA LA LA.” Although most of PENTAGON’s title tracks are earworms, there’s something that sets this one apart from its predecessors. Despite its message of living life without worries, there’s something mysterious in the tone of the song. The opening piano chords are almost haunting and the song features whimsical backing vocals on top of its party-like melodies. “SHA LA LA” still has that rock influence that’s typical of many of PENTAGON’s title tracks, but its contradicting tone and lyrics offers a new sound from the group that gets you hooked immediately. The music video for “SHA LA LA” has much of the same effect: it’s colorful and a little odd, if still mysterious with its space motifs and darker hues.
Picking up where “SHA LA LA” leaves off is the hip hop unit’s “Lost Paradise.” The opening guitar riff fits with the mood of “SHA LA LA” perfectly, but compared to the title song’s carefree tone, “Lost Paradise” is an emotional song that sings of defeat. It’s a song that many will find comfort in, with Yuto and Wooseok’s verses presenting some of the group’s most lyrically raw content. Hui and Kino’s vocals are a wonderful contrast to the grittier rap verses, adding a dimension of desperation to the song. The next track on the album, “Till…,” takes things in an entirely different direction with the ballad unit singing of hope and better days overtop of piano and strings. PENTAGON is a group comprised of severely underrated vocalists and “Till…” really lets some of them shine, particularly Jinho.
The group comes back together as one with “Alien,” an eccentric track about being different from the crowd. Stylistically, the song is the weakest on the album and may be a little too off-kilter when compared to the rest of the tracklist, but “Alien” still gives listeners that fun, zany side to PENTAGON that we’ve come to know and love. “Spring Snow” brings back the rock-influenced sound in full force, with its driving guitars sounding like something that could come off a DAY6 track. While it does sound a little out of place on the album, “Spring Snow” is a great addition to PENTAGON’s discography and definitely an incredible song in its own right. Genie: Us wraps up with the quirky, autobiographical bonus track “Round 1,” where the members poke fun at each other. Between Yuto’s back-and-forth with Hui, Shinwon almost spilling the beans on Kino, and Yanan sizing up Yeo One about his smelly feet, this song is honestly hilarious and really demonstrates the family vibes within the group. Add to that Hongseok’s “one more bite” verse, and you have one of the cutest songs in PENTAGON history.
All in all, Genie: Us is a great release from PENTAGON, covering all the bases from happy to sad and everything in between. Despite only having six songs, Genie: Us has a lot of variety to offer—you’re guaranteed to find a favorite for your spring playlist.