After the success of SEVENTEEN’s last album, FML, expectations were high for the group’s latest release, SEVENTEENTH Heaven. With pre-orders at a record high, fans (also known as CARATs) didn’t know what to expect after the sexiness and power of the previous album, but the group quickly proved why they are the 'King of Concepts'.
As soon as the concept photos started to be released, netizens knew this record couldn’t be more different from the group's last album and was reminiscent of earlier, brighter releases. With the festival theme that was teased during their past concerts, the album seemed to be promoted as a celebration of music, SEVENTEEN, and CARATs. Given the added excitement that the members filmed the music video after being “kidnapped” for filming with well-known producer Na PD, the 23rd of October couldn’t come quick enough for fans.
The first track on the album “SOS,” is a collaboration with producer Marshmello that was teased by frequent SEVENTEEN producer BUMZU earlier in the year. The change in tempo is subtle enough to make it flow seamlessly, whether it is suited to being played at a club or DK’s “ballad” pre-chorus. As the only fully English track on the album, it sounds like a feel-good song that allows all the members’ vocals to shine.
When it was first announced that the title track was to be called “God of Music,” fans were sceptical, and Woozi even asked fans to trust him, and he couldn’t have been more right. From the opening lines, it is a complete 180 degrees from “SUPER,” with more vibrant summer vibes, perfectly embodying a festival feeling. Each member plays their part perfectly and embraces the concept with a fresh tone.
Combined with the perfect music video recorded while in Europe, “God of Music” is the perfect track for the summer that was released in autumn. Amidst an influx of sexy concepts from boy groups, the refreshing tone of SEVENTEEN’s title track set the pace for the entire album.
Out of all the songs, “Diamond Days” is one that might feel most familiar to CARATs. The song samples one of SEVENTEEN’s first-ever tracks, “Shining Diamond,” which can be heard from the opening bars, adding a funkiness to the nostalgia. With so many odes to the song, including the lyrics "Slip into the Diamond Life,” it shows how much the members have achieved and how far they have come from the green basement days.
The first unit song on the album went to the Performance Team in "Back 2 Back". The8’s unique and distinct vocals kick-started another feel-good and upbeat song. The change in tempo allows each member to shine, whether it slows down for Jun or speeds up for Hoshi and Dino. The Performance Team has always showcased their versatility, and this track which is so different from their past releases is no different, blending perfectly with the album’s concept.
Although it might not be easy to imagine what the performance will look like, the track undoubtedly captures the essence of all the unit members.
Ahead of Halloween, the hip hop unit’s track “Monster” is the perfect song for the spooky season. Although it seems out of place on the album, the voice effects and background sounds means it is still an upbeat song. The small details in the music and lyrics make it catchy and addictive, but also something completely unexpected from the group.
The four members’ unique tones blend together seamlessly and it’s not surprising that CARATs are gagging to hear this performed live.
After the track list was released, CARATs knew that the vocal unit song “Yawn” was going to be emotional as the lyrics were solely written by Woozi, who has written many an emotional ballad before. Prior to the song’s release, only the instrumental had been heard, and the piano introduction set a more sombre mood compared to the other songs on the album. It is the simplicity of the instrumental that creates such a beautiful listening experience.
Each member of the vocal unit has a unique voice, and they all blend together seamlessly as each line flows to the next. The smallest key changes add an extra dynamic to the track, creating something with feeling and passion. Yet, combining it with English translation of the lyrics, it is a song created with so much emotion, and relates to everyone in some way.
To end a beautifully diverse album, the song “Headliner” seems like the perfect curtain call. Starting with a soft drum beat, it feels like a celebration song to be sung by a crowd full of CARAT which is followed by Woozi and Mingyu’s equally soft vocals. While the song is slower than the title track, it still has that feel-good aura about it, with a touch of nostalgia in the melody. By combining the different vocals and music, the song creates a feeling of safety and being engulfed in a huge hug by the members.
While there was no direct mention in the album to who the “God of Music” is, it’s a title that can definitely go to Woozi. Throughout the album, the idol-producer-composer has left his mark on each song, and as a result, SEVENTEEN have created a cohesive album with a 'zero skips' tracklist.