TITLE: Hot Sauce – The 1st Album
ARTIST: NCT Dream
LABEL: SM Entertainment
RELEASED: May 10, 2021
WELCOME BACK MARK LEE! We are finally OT7 again and now we are getting a full album. It feels like NCT Christmas in this bitch. SM fell in line with the demands and got rid of the age-based graduation system for Dream and allowed Mark to return to his rightful place once Jisung became legal, legal.
Hot Sauce- Title Track
This song… I love it. I didn’t expect to but it really grows on you. I’m not usually a big fan of these hip-hop afrobeat mix songs but with how simple the track is, it really highlights both vocal and rap lines. Only part I can’t get on board with is the weird electronic bridge part. And let’s be honest, I’m also in love with the MV. The choreo got me and each of these precious’ have glowed up. No chewing gum here.
I thought I would like this better since it’s a Kenzie track. It feels a bit expected of a Dream styled pop song with nuggets of Mark graced rhymes. For some reason it reminds me of an ice cream truck song. Weird, but it does.
Dive Into You
This was the first song I heard during teasers and I knew I was going to feel this sound. It’s a mid-tempo R&B/Pop song and I really like the contrast the bouncy verses and the slow melodic pre-chorus. Jisung’s new post puberty voice has a nice tone and really stands out in this song.
It’s official that Dream is the R&B Pop unit of NCT. This song is more pop but the harmonies between the vocal line give it that R&B flair. The song has a repetition that can get the melody stuck in your head. But by the end, you realize this is just a sweet song.
I love a church organ on a song and they hit you in the face with it. I love this little retro song that makes you wanna soul clap. It feels perfect for the summer. I can see someone just vibing to this while driving down an open road or having fun at a picnic.
Countdown (3, 2, 1)
The first half of the song doesn’t feel as good as the rest after the first chorus. The song has a build up in the chorus that doesn’t really go where you expect but I could see myself still vibing out to it. But the rap line’s bridge is the highlight of this song for sure.
This is the most Bieber song on the album and I’m weirdly here for it. All this synth pop feels great for the summer and Haechan’s riffs make me fall in love with it.
This might be my second favorite track. I like the jazzy feel this song has. The groovy raps mix well with the vocal line’s riffs. The song just has a real big soul influence on it and I loveeeeee.
Be There For You
SANG IT VOCAL LINE! There is something about the dreamies and their vocals that feel deep and youthful. Haechan’s upper register is nothing to be slept on and Chenle’s rang is *chef kiss*. It’s a ballad but also proof that SM be snatching up them vocalists.
I really like this song too! It’s a pop song that makes you want to sway with it’s harmonies. It’s a song that makes me feel like OT7 is what is meant to be. It makes me feel emotional and proud of these boys at the same time. The song is just as beautiful as a rainbow.
This felt like it was a long time coming. These 7 men have been together from adolescence and now coming back together in their youth. It shows in this album that the synergy was there and it seems like everyone was on their A game, showing how they’ve grown as artists and individuals. Did every song knock it out of the park? No. But each song showed that the talent can’t be contained.
PRODUCTION : 4 / 5
VOCALS / RAPPING : 4 / 5
VISUALS / CONCEPT : 4.5 / 5
OVERALL : 4 / 5
Favorite Track(s): Hot Sauce, Rainbow
Least Favorite Track(s): Diggity, Countdown (3,2,1)