JBJ’s final album reminds people to “Just Be Joyful”


The Mirror reporter

It’s never fun to say goodbye to a music group, especially one that has created a fandom so dedicated that fans have tissues out when watching the final music video. That is the impact that South Korean boy group JBJ has made on the K-pop world. Their final album, “New Moon,” gives its listeners an emotional sensation mixed with some summer vibes and a trip down memory lane.

JBJ is based in Seoul under Fave Entertainment. They debuted with the song “Fantasy” on Oct. 18, 2017. JBJ stands for “Just Be Joyful.” The group consists of previous participants from the second season of the 2017 Mnet survival show, Produce 101. Taehyun, Sanggyun, Hyunbin and Donghan are from South Korea, while the other two members are foreigners. Longguo is Chinese and Kenta is Japanese. JBJ is a project group. This means that they are not permanent and they must disband when their contract expires.

“New Moon” was released on April 17, 2018. This album consists of all the songs from their first two mini albums, “Fantasy” and “True Colors,” as well as an additional three songs. The album opens with the beautifully crafted title song “Call Your Name.” The lyrics were written by the all of the members. It pours every ounce of their gratitude and feelings towards Joyfuls (the name of their fans). JBJ reminds Joyfuls that no matter where each of them go, they will never forget the love and support they received from all of their fans.

The second new song, “☆☆ (Be Joyful),” brings a chill vibe. Calming synth and a catchy chorus make for a perfect group goodbye. An appropriate scenario to describe this song would be friends by a bonfire on the last day of summer. It also provides a heartfelt message for all the Joyfuls to not be sad and stay cheerful as the lyrics state “be joyful, love.”

The last of the new songs, “Just Be Stars,” defines the word mesmerizing as it provides a lovely balance of caramel-like vocals and soft rapping. It opens with a little piano riff that makes people stop and listen. It’s the factor that sets the whole mood of the song. The background instrumentals serenade the ears while adding accompaniment that is appropriate for the ballad style being created. This is a true goodbye song.

A summer evening at twilight with friends and loved ones is the picture that these songs illustrate for the listeners. All of them sound like songs that could be played during the ending credits to a light-hearted show. The sweet, sedative melodies softly whisper goodbye in the listener’s ears. The rest of the album allows the listener to relive the first days of JBJ with the older songs. The first two mini albums have opposite feels to them. One is what I like to call music for pumping iron at the gym. The other gives the western pop vibe, with a mix of energetic songs and ballads. Adding old songs to a final album is similar to TV shows adding flashback montages of a character that is leaving for good. It’s meant to make the goodbye more emotional, like the reminiscing of good times with an old friend.

Like most K-pop albums, JBJ does not stray from the plentiful goodies as a part of their album. “New Moon” is like Seventeen’s second studio album “Teen, Age.” The photo books in each album are hardcover style which makes the presentation much more admirable. Photo cards, bookmarks, paper stickers, and a folded poster also come with the album. The typical money-making aspect comes into play since there are several versions of the CD, photo cards, and bookmarks. In addition to this, there are usually two to four versions of the album itself with a different photoshoot concept and aesthetic for each one. “New Moon” is about $28. Albums typically range from $20 to $35 depending on the company and group. This tactic is used in basically all K-pop albums. The hope is that people will want to collect all versions of the content and spend even more money. There are more than enough people in the world who are willing to keep buying until they get every single one. That is the genius way of how the industry ropes people in. K-pop albums are made so that the consumer feels they got the best for their money. The contents and quality of “New Moon” are made to please.

I personally love this album. It’s got all the songs JBJ has ever produced. This is nice because if anyone ever gets into them and wants to buy their music, they can just get this album rather than spending more money buying the first two. The passion that each of the members put into this project is clearly illustrated. JBJ will be missed dearly by many people, including myself. However, this album just shows that each member will go on to do great things in their career. Even after they split, JBJ’s music will always be available for people to enjoy. Their disbandment is set for April 30, 2018.