Boy, this sure dropped much later than I planned. I’ve had this half completed for a few weeks, fortunately. Just waiting on the July 31st releases.
But yeah, my initial date was the second, but I ended up spending most of the day running errands. Then I was editing a video for my new Booktube account. I have been having fun creating videos for that. I’m still working on getting into the groove of things there.
I still want to do some videos for ATK, but it’s difficult with copyright and playing music. Most of the video ideas I have include playing some of the songs I would talk about. So Idk, still brainstorming that.
Then I thought, okay, I’ll aim for the 6th, but then I got a text on the fifth from one of my best friends asking if I wanted to go to Lollapalooza to see DPR and check out some other people for the last day. So naturally I said yes after clearing it with my mom since she’d be watching Bonbon and Penelope and being my ride to and from the airport.
So late Saturday I frantically packed for the next two days and got to hang out with one of my closest friends I haven’t seen irl since 2018. It was so much fun. I posted on my old Insta account, but I’ll have some videos and pics on ATK Insta as well.
Then my flight back Monday evening got delayed, so instead of getting home around 10-11pm (I live about an hour north of the airport in good traffic, lol). I got home around 3, then bed at like 4:30 in the morning. So nothing was getting done Tuesday. Then Wednesday was my first real day of normalcy. And now it’s Thursday afternoon as of writing.
July I hardly remember what happened, but August has been a blast so far. I’m excited for what’s to come.
Let’s get into the music!
QUEENZ EYE – UN-Normal
“Un-normal” is a nice jazzy tune. Didn’t care for “Domino”. But a nice surprise find. I’ve heard a bit about QUEENZ EYE on Reddit, so I’m happy I enjoyed this release.
I’m looking forward to more music from them.
JUNNY – Invitation feat Gaeko
Oooo I like this. Immediately added to my k-r&b playlist. I probably need to do a deep dive into his music. I have a few songs of his save, but I don’t think I’ve listened to a full album of his.
TXT & Jonas Brothers – Do It Like That
Catchy, but I feel like everything was spoiled in their teaser TikToks. It sounds exactly l how I expected it to be. Same with the music video.
They do look amazing, and I love the simplicity of the video. My favorite TXT Western collab so far. But nothing I think I’ll come back to much.
EXO – Exist
I wasn’t sure about “Hear Me Out” but it’s become one of my favorite EXO songs. It was stuck in my head by my third listen. I started this album, listening through while running errands. I knew I would like it, but I’m impressed.
I was afraid I’d only have maybe three songs max that I would revisit. But I haven’t been this into an EXO album in years. 8/9 songs saved. I went back to check and yeah, it was THE WAR. I haven’t had that many EXO songs saved from an album since THE WAR, literally 😂.
The only song I didn’t care for was “Another Day”. After the first time the chorus played I was pulling into a parking spot, I was like, “oooo I do NOT like this” as I put Jocelyn, my car, in park.
“Cream Soda” is an interesting choice for a title track. I don’t hate it, but I’m not sold on it yet either as of writing.
And the fireworks logo? Chef’s kiss. “Private Party” is my third fave song. Shout out to them, bring back the bed squeak sound lmao.
I talked about “Hear Me Out” and “Let Me In” more in my Other Fave EXO Songs article. So that’s why I linked “Private Party” and focused more on it here.
I can’t stop listening to this album, probably gonna be in my top 3 fave albums of 2023.
ZEROBASEONE – Youth In The Shade
I meant to watch Boys Planet, but I never got around to it. Story of my life. I’ve kinda been keeping up with news about the group. This is another surprise find.
I figured I’d like this album, but I had a fun time with this. I listened to YOUTH IN THE SHADE while sewing curtains, lol. I was jammin along.
I think this will be a casual album I’ll be listening to off and on. I’m not obsessed with it, but I don’t think it’s overrated either. I love a good house moment.
NMIXX – Roller Coaster
Loooove “Roller Coaster” it was recommended after I finished listening to EXIST. I think this is my favorite NMIXX song.
ODD EYE CIRCLE – Version Up
I knew I’d love this album. Musically, OEC was my favorite LOONA subunit. I love the call back to their previous works in “Did You Wait?”.
This is just like a return to form. We’re picking up from Max & Match (2017). I think my favorite song atm is a tie between “Je Ne Sais Quoi” and “My Secret Playlist”. If you’ve enjoyed any previous ODD EYE CIRCLE songs, you’ll love this album.
I need them to come to Atlanta!!!
Sandara Park – DARA DARA
I didn’t have too high expectations from Miss Dara. But “DARA DARA” was my favorite song off SANDARA PARK. It was an alright album. It sounded how I expected it to.
Actually, it reminds me a lot of Nayeon’s album. A short mix of different genres and a few features. Mostly pop sound to it but nothing groundbreaking. Pretty safe overall but catchy. I think if you’re a Blackjack, it’s worth checking out. I think now all of 2NE1 has had solo releases.
ENHYPEN – One and Only
Cute! I like this brighter concept for them. Love the song. Sunoo and Piplup feels like it was made for me because Piplup is my favorite starter and Pokémon in general. And Sunoo is my second fave in Enha.
Moral of the story is, Enha continues to slay. And we’re gonna see them again on this list.
Jungkook – Seven feat Latto
Man, I love Han Sohee in this video so much. She’s the highlight for me. This video is just so entertaining from start to finish. Latto’s look is amazing. I think my favorite Jungkook fit was the one towards the end with the black and white jacket.
I was starting to get burnt out on BTS solos. I thought I’d enjoy Suga’s more than I actually did. I haven’t listend to D-DAY at all since it dropped. So my next thought was, okay, Jungkook, it’s up to you.
But as it got further into the year, and more BTS music released, I was losing faith. But my first instinct was right. Mr. Jungkook did the damn thing and kept with more of an R&B sound like I wanted.
I’m incredibly impressed with this “Seven”. It’s sooooo catchy. I hear it once and it’s stuck in my head for the next 8 hours along with “Hear me Out”.
Mans understood the assignment. I need the full album, STAT. There’s something so funny about Jungkook’s delivery of “f**cling you riiiight” in the explicit version. I’m sorry I cannot take it seriously at all.
I think I’ll have both clean and explicit in rotation, though. I listened to the explicit version first because I like to live wildly.
NCT DREAM – ISTJ (album)
I kinda hate this half music videos, but they look AMAZING here. 1000/10 right here.
“Yoghurt Shake” is ight, but “Poison” is what I’ve been waiting for. Not a huge fan of the rap portion, but I love the rest of it. I was ready to drop listening to this album and move on to the rest of my new music playlist.
“Starry Night” is good. I guess I like more of the softer songs on this album. The more Hip Hop and idk Neo songs, I’m not feeling. I don’t like these songs where Mark is carrying the songs with his rap.
Bc Jeno and Jaemin aren’t giving anything (most of the time) and vocalline don’t have anything to do in these songs because their parts are shortened, or they’ve become sub-rappers. Not a great use of their talents.
I think they all shine when it’s a more vocal focused song like “Poison” with a small rap feature.
NewJeans – Get Up (album)
“Super Shy” and “Cool With You” were my faves from this album. More of the same but in a good way.
I wish the shorter songs like “New Jeans” and “Get Up” were a bit longer. “ETA” was fine. Not worth the controversy. But an ight song. If you like previous NJ songs, you’ll like this album too.
Yugyeom – LOLO
Another Yugyeom song I’m obsessed with. Loveeeee “LOLO”. It’s already one of my songs of the year. Didn’t care for “Say Nothing”. It’s fine.
I think I was expecting something closer to “Call You Up” by Park Jihoon and Leehi. I’m not opposed to another collab with Leehi and Yugeyeom though. I like “Say Nothing” but it’s nothing I’m gonna run to the dance floor for, you know?
This music video, I think, is my favorite of his solo videos so far. I love the way it was shot and the imagery in it. It has like a late 90s vibe to it. The styling and choreo is on point too.
ILY:1 – New Chapter
I like “Shining Sky”. Very bubblegum and cheery. “Blossom” is my favorite, but it has a similar vibe as “Shining Sky”. “My Color” also slaps.
When it comes to cute concepts like this, I always think of GFRIEND and Lovelyz. I love this sound, and I’m here for groups sounding like this. Will be keeping an eye on them.
Soyou – Summer Recipe
“ALOHA” is good. Feels like something SISTAR would release. I missed Soyou doing these more upbeat dance songs. I totally missed rap queen Bora. “Drivin’ Me” and “Bad Desire” are my other faves from this album.
MISAMO – Do Not Touch
I knew I’d like “Do Not Touch” from the brief clip of Momo doing the dance challenge on Insta. I didn’t listen to it right when it dropped 😅.
But I love the visuals and the concept. I’m an art heaux, so this feels like it was made with me in mind. Of course, the girls look wonderful, but I saw blown away by the styling and scenes they came up with. I could watch this video for hours.
I had a feeling I wasn’t going to like the rest of the songs on the album as much, and unfortunately this was true. It’s an alright album. Nothing I’m dying to listen to again, but not trash. It’s fine.
LE SSRERAFIM x Rina Sawayama – Eve, Psyche & The Bluebeard’s Wife remix
Slaps. I thought this was a new song, but then I saw they announced a remix with Demi Lovato and saw comments about how Source (their label) is dragging out promotions with this song.
So that made me less excited about this track, lol. But I like this remix a lot. Can’t go wrong with Rina.
INFINITE – 13egin
In Infinite we trust. The bass riff on “New Emotions” goes hard. They knew we’d want an instrumental version of this song because it’s so good. I’m a casual fan and didn’t have to high of expectations for this album.
“Time Difference” is good. More engaging instrumentals and catchy melodies. I’ll probably listen to this one the most. This is the first album of theirs I’ve loved from start to finish.
This has all my favorite parts of previous Infinite songs all in one album. The only one I’m not going back to is “Find Me” but it’s still a good song. Just not my vibe.
*adds to fave albums of the year list*
ENHYPEN – Criminal Love
I’m surprised there isn’t an official audio upload of this track. At least there isn’t one as of writing. I like it.
Very dramatic and dark. Fits perfectly with “Bite Me” and Enha’s previous releases like this. I’m never gonna turn down a track like this.
Come back to Atlanta!!! I miss you, lol.
And that’s it for July. A spectacular month for music. I hope August keeps up the momentum. How was y’alls July? Any plans for August? What’s currently on your most listened to playlist? Let me know in the comments.