Following up their successful ‘Winter Dream’ album, ASTRO is primed for a summer comeback with ‘Dream Part.01!’ There’s eight fresh tracks on this EP, including the title track “Baby.”
Starting with a synth booping happily, “Dreams Come True” is a club-banger, although done in a completely happy upbeat style, rather than anything forceful. The boys voices come through clearly on this one, particularly Moonbin’s, though I love JinJin’s raps on the track too. The song almost has a cute feel to it, like you can almost see ASTRO making heart signs and such while performing it.
“Baby” is the title track, and if possible, it’s even more cutesy than the first song. The vocals here also top notch, and the boys definitely deliver during the main verses. I particularly like the faux horns in this tune — they really give the thing a punch that it was sort of missing during the intro, and make it even more upbeat. These first two tracks have a sort of playful vibe running through them.
“You Smile” is probably the true club banger of the whole mix, starting out with smooth croons over an electric guitar. I like how the prechorus gets even harder and more emotional, before hitting the crescendo in the chorus itself. It’s got a great hook in “make you smile,” as well. JinJin’s raps sound absolute sick here. This is easily my favorite song on this disc.
If I was worried about a ballad, “Lie” puts those fears to rest. It develops into a power ballad, but early on it’s fairly tender and low key. Some of the rougher vocals really work in its favor, giving it a gravitas that a clean rendering might lack. A crashing beat keeps the time while the boys wrap their voices around this one. At the end it sounds positively majestic and sweeping, like a ballad should.
I thought the first couple tracks were upbeat and happy, but “Every Minute” blows them both away as far as cuteness and power. One of the refreshing things about this is they don’t sound like they positioning themselves as anything other than bashful youths. And I think that comes right through in the sound and tone of the tune. It’s still a good danceable tune.
What’s interesting to me is they decided to close on a high, cheerful note rather than a ballad. The lyrics are no less meaningful, but the tone is a little different. There are really very few ballads on here anyway, which is also a little unusual, but not for ASTRO. One of things I’ve always liked about them is the vocal power they can put behind their songs, and this album is another example. It’s a little uneven, with more cute style cuts at the beginning, but at the end of the day it still sounds like them. Which is a very good thing.
The video starts with the viewer being invited into a soda shop with the most unusual rooms. Almost everything has a kiddie oriented slant to it, to the trampoline with balls or the slide. On one hand, you have to ask what the boys are doing there. On the other, you have to admit: it’s a great place to take a younger niece or nephew.
The MV for “Baby” is just as playful as the song. The boys sport grins throughout almost all of it, and some of them even look like they’re enjoying themselves. Even if there were long, grueling hours to make this turn out just right, that doesn’t seem to matter here. This is one feel-good piece.
The dancing itself is quite impressive. Although there are some cutesy movements, they move more than some bands. And even some of the individual shots have them busting moves. And sometimes they go airborne. I’m not going to pretend it’s the most amazing thing, but they do what they do well.
All in all, this MV is satisfyingly lively. I think they may have taken the “baby” too far (and seriously out of context) with the kiddie fare, but still, it made for a fun MV.
SEE ALSO: ASTRO to hold first ever solo concert in July
Get K-POP Merch @ allkpop The Shop