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[Herald Interview] Back from ‘Road to Kingdom,’ Oneus seeks big leap with ‘Lived’

Having recently returned from a fierce competition show, Oneus had a bagful of rich stories to share. From enduring nerve-racking moments together to struggling with missions for each show, the group’s time on Mnet’s “Road to Kingdom” was definitely a big leap in the group’s nearly two-year career.

“After the show, what changed the most was that we saw infinite potential in ourselves,” recalled Keonhee during a recent interview with The Korea Herald. “In the past, I used to limit myself to, let’s say seven out of ten. But now, the sky’s the limit. In the process of challenging myself through the show, I gained courage to push my boundaries.”

Throughout the program that aired from April to June, the six-piece act under RBW Entertainment competed against six other popular boy bands, successfully showcasing its versatility and musicality. While their appearance didn’t result in finishing on top, the bandmates shared that the experience came at a key time for the group’s growth as musicians. 

(RBW Entertainment)
(RBW Entertainment)
“I think our performances have improved a lot. On ‘Road to Kingdom,’ we had to showcase impactful and intense performances all the time, which even involved acrobatics. So naturally, we’ve been brushing up our performance skills and they’ve been obviously reflected in ‘To Be or Not to Be,’” said Seoho.

Fronting the act’s fourth EP “Lived,” “To Be or Not to Be,” a famous line from William Shakespeare‘s play “Hamlet,” the song is about having to make a choice at life’s crossroads. Backed by a vampire-themed storyline that extends from the group’s previous single “Come Back Home,” the song reflects the band’s growth both vocally and performance-wise, according to the boys.

“It may be hard for our fans to sing along with the song this time, as it requires some techniques and details. It also captures our most sophisticated emotions,” said Hwanwoong. “We also learned how to express our feelings through music, which we’d practiced throughout the program as well,” said Xion.

In order to convey the new song’s message, the bandmates went onto share that they’ve been delving into vampire-related movies and content.

“We really tried to understand the traits and nature of a vampire, especially the one who’s in love with a human but has to make a choice between love and blood, so that our fans could really get the concept of our new song,” added Keonhee. Ravn and Leedo, who took part in penning the song’s raps, also said that they’ve tried to come up with straightforward lyrics that could directly capture the vampire’s complicated emotions and circumstances.

“We really poured our best efforts into the new album, and fans will also be able to recognize our growth from ‘Road to Kingdom.’ It’s been such a great memory and journey,” said Keonhee.

Having debuted with the “Light Us” EP in January last year, Oneus, featuring Ravn, Seoho, Leedo, Keonhee, Hwanwoog and Xion, has steadily grown its audience globally and became one of the most promising rookie groups in the scene. While appearing on “Road to Kingdom,” the group dropped its latest single “Come Back Home” during the show’s finale and finished in fourth place overall.

The group’s new “Lived” EP dropped on Wednesday evening.

By Hong Dam-young (lotus@heraldcorp.com)
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