TARGET - Is is true
TARGET is a seven-member boy group housed under JSL company. They debuted back in January of this year with "Awake," a track that I didn't review but I did check into. I personally didn't enjoy the song too much, though I saw potential in the group and they gave me the vibes of an older generation group in terms of their style. They were like a cross between Infinite and Stray Kids, and I really liked the energy in their debut even though I didn't care much for the song. Going into this comeback, I was hoping for a continuation and exploration of that sound that would show their progress since we'd last heard from them.
"Is it true" is pretty much the exact opposite of what I was expecting, and I don't think it's a good thing ultimately. The melancholy piano melody against the upbeat percussion is a nice contradictory instrumental overall, though generally the pace, tension, energy, atmosphere, and overall sound of the song stays rather static and stagnant. This just kind of bogs the song down and makes it feel like you're trudging through it rather than enjoying it. It's not offensive on the ears by any means, and a lot of the vocals actually are crisp and smooth, it's just a matter of the sense of a lack of progression taking so much away from that.
The song is also much too mellow and somber for a very new group to be doing in the current market. Don't misunderstand me. I'm not against this type of song in the least, and I'm most definitely all for going against the grain in order to make your group stand out. What I'm not for is doing something that ultimately isn't all that original or interesting. More importantly, what I'm against is that this is a song that is almost guaranteed to fail to capture the majority of the public's interest. This is exponentially worse when your comeback is the same day as one of the absolute most popular groups in the industry. All of that when a group is already not on the radar for most people, which is the case for TARGET, just makes for a disastrous combination. I'm not saying that public attention is everything or that it defines what makes a song good or bad - but for a smaller company to be recklessly doing a release like this? I just think it's poor management and begging to be passed over, which is never a good thing for a group trying to find their footing.
It seems that the new hotness for boy groups to do is break open the sleeves on their shirts and keep them loose and drafty for arm movements. I don't really don't mind that it's the current trend, but it really lacks the same impact when every group keeps doing it. The amount of extra lighting in this video from filters was a bit too much for me, too. It looked nice and clean, which kind of went along with the style of sound, but I'm just getting bored of this effect being in every single video.
Styling-wise, I actually liked a lot of their outfit choices and I was actually surprised at the amount of sets used for a lesser-known group's first comeback. There's really not much else going on when it comes to a story for this video, and that's fine because there weren't points where they pretended like there was. One shot in particular with the two members and the staircase was really nice, but otherwise not too much was memorable. The choreography seemed solid and I think that I'd really like to see it in full at some point. All in all, the video was okay, but the general lack of originality was a little too overbearing for me personally.
"Is it true" ended up being a disappointment overall, sadly. To be clear, though, this is entirely on the fault of the company. To be scheduling your group to have a comeback on the exact same day as TWICE, quite literally the most popular girl group in the market, is just irresponsible. It's as though JSL wanted this group to go ignored for this comeback, because I really can't see them picking up much traction with this when TWICE is going to be blasting everywhere else instead of TARGET, especially with a song like this during summer.