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Music Monday: “Good Boy Gone Bad” by Tomorrow X Together (TXT)

©Tomorrow X Together (TXT)

Are we back in the 2000’s?! Am I dating myself by making this reference? Who knows, but if you remember Cobra Starship’s 2009 jam “Good Girls Go Bad,” you might be thinking of that when you saw the title of Tomorrow X Together (TXT)‘s new song.” Scary, I know, but trust me –TXT’s NEW album, in the year 2022 (no relation to the 2000’s, except maybe a little nostalgia), is bringing some 2009 vibes.

The song is “Good Boy Gone Bad,” and at this point, TXT has had it.

While they started their musical careers with fun, upbeat tracks like “Crown” about fitting in and growing up and more bubbly outings like “Blue Hour,” their most recent work, “0X1=LOVESONG” and “LO$ER=LOVER,” signaled a shift in their progression, which is how we arrived at this guitar-heavy banger and these boys that just do not care anymore about how badly they are hurt. Better to use it than let it continue to take you down, right?

At least, that’s where TXT is at right now. It makes sense in terms of the growth and change of their sound, as well as the way the narrative of the songs has developed. It’s a bit more intense than 0X1=LOVESONG and a bit darker than LO$ER=LOVER, but it’s giving drama, emotion, and a hard-hitting quality they have not spent very long cultivating as a group.

But reader, it works. It just does. The title is simple, sure, but like I mentioned, this is where we have been heading with this group for some time now, and to see the darker and more aggressive concept come to fruition is so fun, especially since the members genuinely seem to be having a good time exploring different types of music.

The first thing I noticed about “Good Boy Gone Bad” is how much it was absolutely made for Huening Kai’s vocals. Him punching the wall in the phone booth (at around 0:25) absolutely makes ME want to also punch a wall. The way he sounds, combined with the curly-ish hair and earrings? STOP. The color of his voice is just so suited to this part of the verse, it’s honestly scary.

I love that they chose Soobin to deliver the softer sound of the beginning of the bridge. It fits him so completely, and the addition of the color as he punches the mirror is both aesthetically pleasing and really true to TXT’s color palette in previous videos, so it feels extremely satisfying and gives the viewer a sense of linkage between the videos. The blurring effect on the camera, too, provides an even softer look that aligns with the vocals.

Beomgyu’s red hair provides another pop of color in a predominantly dark video as well, and his deep voice along with the more rhythmic lines he has at the end of the bridge are things I am not emotionally ready to talk about, nor will I ever be. The distribution of lines is truly just an art form in “Good Boy Gone Bad” — they have matched every line to the right member to deliver it.

Let’s talk about the goodest boy gone bad, my beloved Yeonjun, and his baseball hat that honestly made me question my sanity — maybe I should be more focused on the catchy chorus that is easy enough for most people to sing along with and will get stuck in your head probably forever, but instead, I am weeping over a hat. I did not choose the Yeonjun-loving life, it chose me. Do not bring up 2:41. Just don’t.

I truly cannot cope with the fact that Taehyun gets to show off a little bit of his upper register — love that for him, and love that for ME, to be honest. It’s obvious he has been working on it and it really shines brightly in this song. Something about this deadpan, gentle boy doing a tough concept seems like it wouldn’t translate well, but he absolutely killed it and never stops impressing.

Another thing I really love about this video is watching them destroy things. I feel like every object that gets destroyed, do not @ me about it, because they kind of ran me over with this one, and I’m not sure what more to say other than it’s awfully fun for being about hurting so badly you don’t feel pain anymore, but what can I say? These boys truly always deliver.

I am a huge proponent of the idea that while the music videos are very eye-catching and aesthetic, k-pop is best enjoyed watching the choreographed live performance, and the same is true for this song, so check out how they did at Korean music show Inkigayo here.

Is “Good Boy Gone Bad” my villain origin story? Who hurt you, TXT?!? Is this good girl going bad?

Maybe we’ll find out — if I ever stop listening to it.

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