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Astro boasts its signature freshness in 3rd LP ‘Drive to the Starry Road’

Astro members pose for picture during a media showcase for its third LP “Drive to the Starry Road” conducted in Seoul on May 16. (Fantagio)
Astro members pose for picture during a media showcase for its third LP “Drive to the Starry Road” conducted in Seoul on May 16. (Fantagio)
K-pop boy band Astro is back with its signature freshness for its third full-length album, “Drive to the Starry Road,” delving deeper into new sounds with the band’s six years of experience.

The six-member act held a press conference in Seoul on Monday afternoon, a few hours ahead of the album’s release. Member MJ, real name Kim Myung-jun, started his military service last Monday and was absent from the event.

“Drive to the Starry Road” marks the band’s return after a nearly nine-month hiatus, after dropping its eighth EP “Switch On” in August. The group’s last studio album “All Yours” was released in April 2021.

“We received a huge amount of love last year with the LP and the EP, and we’re returning confident with fresh sounds again. As it’s our third LP, we’ve put much care into preparing the album and we’ve included our solo songs for the first time,” the act’s leader JinJin said.

Encompassing an expansive 11 tracks, the album is tinted deep with the unique colors of the group and its members as they tell of the past, present and future shared with their fans, Aroha.

“The album portrays the path Astro has walked with our fans until now and the road we have ahead of us. It says that we’ve walked a starry road, which will continue to await us in the future,” Cha Eun-woo said.

Fronting the album is “Candy Sugar Pop,” a dance tune overflowing with fresh and sweet sentiments. Members JinJin, Moonbin and Rocky took part in writing the lyrics.

“We believe our strength is with the fresh concept, but hopefully we can also spell out our dynamic charms with the solo songs,” Cha Eun-woo explained.

Listed on the album are four other group songs -- “Something Something,” “More,” “Light the Sky” and “Like Stars” -- as well as each member’s solo songs: MJ’s “Story”; JinJin’s “All Day”; Cha Eun-woo’s “First Love”; Moonbin’s “Let’s Go Ride”; Rocky’s “S#1” and Yoon Sanha’s “24 Hours.”


Astro members pose for picture during a media showcase for its third LP “Drive to the Starry Road” conducted in Seoul on May 16. (Fantagio)
Astro members pose for picture during a media showcase for its third LP “Drive to the Starry Road” conducted in Seoul on May 16. (Fantagio)

“The songs represent the unique colors the members have discovered over the past seven years,” JinJin said, adding, “preparing a full-length album always comes with some pressure, but seeing the result, we’re more than satisfied.”

Regarding the bandmates attempting solo songs for the LP, Rocky said, “We’ve each worked hard on honing ourselves on lyric-writing and composing. We thought that we were all now prepared enough to take charge of a single song alone and decided to include solo songs in this album.”

Following the album’s release, Astro is holding concerts on May 28-29 at the Jamsil Indoor Stadium in Olympic Park, southern Seoul.

“As people driven by the energy we get from our performances, we’ve really missed interacting with the fans. It’s a huge joy that we could be with the fans now that the (coronavirus) situation has eased. We’re working hard for the concert as well, so please look forward to it,” JinJin said.

Moonbin added, “As it’s our first concert in three years, we’re as nervous as we are excited. We’re looking forward to performing live in front of the audience the songs from our albums that we’ve only showed online.”

On their goals with the comeback, JinJin said, “Our goal is topping the charts, and we’re quite confident.”

Wrapping up the event, Sanha defined “Drive to the Starry Road” in one word as a “dessert.”

“The title song is addictive, and we hope people want to keep on listening to it, just like a dessert.”


By Choi Ji-won (jwc@heraldcorp.com)
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