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Rookie boy group ATBO begins journey of finding true self with ‘The Beginning: Start’

Rookie boy group ATBO poses for photos during a press showcase event for its second EP
Rookie boy group ATBO poses for photos during a press showcase event for its second EP "The Beginning: Start" at at Yes24 Live Hall in eastern Seoul, Wednesday. (IST Entertainment)

Rookie boy group ATBO made a speedy comeback with its second EP, “The Beginning: Start,” on Wednesday. The new release marked the act’s return to the stage about three months after its debut with “The Beginning: Blossom” in July.

“We’re overjoyed to make a comeback with new songs not long after our debut showcase. We’ve upgraded (our performing skills) so please look forward to our improvements,” Seok Rak-won said at a press showcase event held at Yes24 Live Hall in eastern Seoul ahead of the EP’s release at 6 p.m. online.

“The Beginning: Start” is about the group’s journey of finding its true self. As part of this effort, the septet took a greater role in the lyrics-writing and composition than the previous album, according to the band’s leader Oh Jun-seok. “We’re happy to share stories that we wanted to tell listeners through this album,” Ryu Jun-min said.

Leading the six-track EP is “Attitude,” featuring 808 bass sounds and an addictive melody. It talks about the group’s confidence toward its unique dopeness and attitude, Jeong Seung-hwan said. The other songs on the album are "Time to Go!," "Magic," "Boost," "The Way" and "Good Vibes Only."

Among the six tracks, Oh was involved in writing lyrics for four songs. He also participated in the composition process for “Magic” with Kim Yeon-kyu, while writing the lyrics for “Good Vibes Only” with Ryu. The third track “Magic” is especially meaningful for the group, since it’s a song dedicated to its fans.

“'Magic’ is about our time with fans in the past. The song’s lyrics include words and phrases like ‘Boat’ (the band's official fandom) and ‘start with us’ (the band's slogan). We’re looking forward to (the fans’) responses,” the leader said. Kim explained that the song also includes the group’s promise with its fans.

The group's rappers also wrote more of the rap lyrics than before. Bae Hyun-jun showed confidence in writing higher-quality rap lines in a much shorter time. While the choreography of “Attitude” was created by dancer Vata, who currently appears on Mnet's dance competition show, “Street Man Fighter, the members practiced the dance moves to perform in their own style, according to Oh.

“We tried to show our powerful energy during our activities for ‘The Beginning: Blossom.’ However, this time we aim to show groovy yet easy dance moves that everybody can follow. Please pay attention to our attempts to pull off various pieces of choreography,” the leader said.

When asked about the act’s plan for the following album release, Oh said that while no plans have been set, it will likely be sometime next year. At the same time, the band leader expressed his hope to sing about their honest yet immature feelings as grown-ups.

With the latest release, ATBO has set big goals as well. Under the nickname of “the king of performance,” the septet aims to showcase its phenomenal dance moves onstage. The band has also set its eyes on nabbing rookie award trophies at this year’s year-end music awards, Seok said. To make its dreams come true, Ryu asked for much support and love.



By Jie Ye-eun (yeeun@heraldcorp.com)
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