Since debuting early this year with the great, Midnight Romance, The Midnight Romance have been slowly but steadily releasing a strong collection of synth heavy music. Not all of it has been for me but their adherence to building a signature sound has definitely perked my ears. In fact, they’ve slowly become the band I’m most excited to see grow and release music. And while their fanbase is still incredibly small, songs like the ghoulish Nightmare are exactly why.
One thing that I really wish more modern Kpop groups would lean more into is the idea of halloween themed songs. Yeah, I know that groups dress up in “shpooky” costumes and perform within the spirit of halloween but I want horror elements to really take hold of not only the concept but also the song itself. Songs need to sound eerie or sometimes even whacky. I’m talking VIXX’s Voodoo Doll, f(x)’s Dracula and now I’m pretty confident in putting Nightmare in the same category. This track feels like the personification of the halloween spirit filtered through a retro synth wave lens. And boy do I love every second of it. Now, while Nightmare might be the hundredth track to heavily embrace the retro synthwave craze that’s been dominating the kpop industry recently, it feels much more genuine than it does for many other groups. I think this has a lot to do with frontman No Minue, who’s whispy vocals perfectly compliment the more surreal instrumental choices. I honestly don’t think anybody else would be able to elevate the track as well as he does here.
The best example of this is the chorus, where the instrumental swells over a fantastic melody before climaxing in a brilliant flurry of guitars and percussion. It all sounds so ghoul like and I’m living for it. One thing I’ve noticed about most of the groups tracks is just how strongly they can evoke feelings of nostalgia. Despite Nightmare being more straightforward pop than their debut effort, I think that it envoks an even stronger emotional response. The melody here is just perfect and just snowballs throughout the course of the track to create one of the years most resonant chorus’. If I had one complaint, it would be that the initial synth line is just a little too high. It borders on shrill and could honestly put some people off the track. But that’s only minor grips for a track that exceeds all expectations and is likely going to soundtrack the next few weeks of my life just like Midnight Romance did on release.
(Also that Keytar is sick as)
Final Rating: 9 / 10