Get your boxing gloves on, because Monsta X is back in the ring with one of their strongest comebacks yet, The Clan Part 2: Guilty, and they’re ready to knock you out.
The six-track EP is a continuation of their The Clan EP from earlier this year and features the comeback single “Fighter”. With a strong production team including Giriboy and Hyuk Shin, Guilty is full of fast-paced and absolutely addicting k-hiphop. The members of Monsta X also participated in the production of the EP: every rap was written either by Jooheon or IM. Jooheon also wrote and produced the song “White Love”.
With its fun boxing concept, “Fighter” is a strong contender as a follow up to their last single, “All In”. The full band chorus packs a powerful punch and the ringing bells make the listener feel like they are going in the ring themselves. Add in Jooheon and IM’s fierce rapping and Kihyun’s effortless high notes and you’ve got an explosive song. If you’re looking for a song to get you pumped up, look no further; this track leaves you feeling like a champion.
Arguably the best song on the album is Monsta X’s collaboration with Giriboy, “Blind”. Giriboy has written and produced Monsta X songs before like their single “Rush” and even appeared on their reality survival show NO.MERCY. With its layered harmonies, including a tropical beat, guitar, tambourine and synthesiser, “Blind” should be an overwhelming song. Instead, Giriboy crafts it into a slow grooving masterpiece that shows a more sensual side of Monsta X. When it comes time for another comeback, I hope they pick this track.
At first listen, the intro of “Queen” sounds exactly like Monsta X’s debut single “Trespass”. Arranged by Hyuk Shin, the track features sirens, a deep bass beat, clapping, and a quick changing tempo that gives a disorienting feeling. While “Blind” took chaotic noises and blended them together to make a cohesive sound, “Queen” seems to get lost in its complexity. “Queen” also follows after “Blind”, and having a slow song followed by a faster one made the track feel even more out of place. It also doesn’t help that the following songs, “White Love” and “Rollercoaster”, are softer tracks as well. If “Queen” were to be successful on the album, it should’ve been placed before “Blind”.
Overall, Guilty is a strong EP and grounds Monsta X as a fierce competitor to bands like BTS and GOT7 that have a bit of K-hiphop/R&B flair. If you’re a fan of Monsta X’s sound from previous EPs, especially “Rush”, then you will enjoy this album. While it is solid, Guilty does leave the listener wanting more. Whether that means a full album or for the group to experiment in their sound, Guilty leaves the door open for lots of new opportunities for Monsta X.
This post was written by our guest blogger, Emlyn Travis.