DREAM CATCHER – PREQUEL
1. Before & After (Intro)
2. Fly High *Title
3. Wake up
5. It's Okay!
6. Fly high (Inst.)
Dream Catcher has just dropped their first ever mini-album. Rising from the ashes of dance-pop outfit Minx, they debuted in January with a new concept and new sound. Renowned for the singles "Chase Me" and "Good Night," Dream Catcher unveils five new songs on their 'Prequel' EP.
"Before & After" is their intro song and it's uncharacteristically pop-oriented for Dream Catcher. The track gets pretty bass-heavy when it gets going, and it's slightly unsettling as well, which sets the tone nicely for the rest of the disc.
The title track is "Fly High," which starts out with a piano intro. It doesn't take long to get some blazing guitar riffs. From there, it teases us with those riffs during the main verses, and we're treated to a nice, powerful chorus. It sounds even better than their previous awesome singles. I really love the mini-raps they put in here, straddling the line between ad libs and actual raps. They give the song Some edging this that goes right along with their concept. What a song, it's one of the best of 2017 so far for sure.
"Wake up" has heavier instrumentation, but initially the vocals sound sweet and very J-pop. Still, once it reaches the chorus is where the sharpness and fierceness come shining through. The bridge is nicely done, initially soft, and the transition back to the harder part is epic. I love the hooks in here, and it's super catchy.
"Sleep-Walking" sounds almost like tip toes in the beginning. You know, how it sounds in those classic cartoons? This is one of those songs that I think would make a great anime intro tune. It's a low-key rocker and has this certain suspense that builds in the main verses. And it has some techno chords that come in with the first chorus. I like how they shake it up to keep things interesting.
"Trust Me (It's Okay!)" is a classic power-ballad, starting out quiet, gentle, and sweet. Eventually, however, it gets heavy and emotional. It's songs like this that show off the vocal talents these girls have. They can drop from calm to passionate at the drop of a hat. And they do a great job with that here. It's a reflective tune where the girls are depressed. All they want is for someone to tell them things will be okay.
I think their sound has gotten more polished since their debut. And this album proves it. They've still got some of the staccato beats that made them popular, but they've refined them, and dialed them back, making them count more. The transitions between verse and chorus are overall better as well. So the production team has done their job well. The girls do an awesome job of translating the material, because, in the end, that's what we hear. And I look forward to every new release they put out.
Like their previous MVs, this one has a dark, supernatural tinge to it. A lot of it is rooted in the familiar, but in some ways that makes it even creepier.
Going along with the title of the EP, this is a prequel video. It shows us how they were staying in the hotel, and the spooky things that lived there affected them somehow, perhaps introducing the girls to black magic. Running into a haunted forest, reading forbidden books, and capturing an albino spider that is really a supernatural entity. I have a feeling that the hotel they're staying at now is the haunted surroundings seen in their other MVs.
We get to see some of their choreo, and they've upped their game a bit. The moves are little more deliberate here, and there's some really high energy during the dance sequences. They were good before, but it seems like they've gotten even better.
Overall, this is thoroughly entertaining. I like the contrast between light and dark in this MV, and the tale of how we got from here to where we were at in "Good Night" is arresting and suspenseful. I like a good horror tell and that's what they've given us in this MV. Great job, girls!
MV SCORE: 9
ALBUM SCORE: 9.7