Big Hit Music’s TOMORROW X TOGETHER, commonly referred to as TXT, released their 5th mini-album The Name Chapter: TEMPTATION on January 27. The EP came with high anticipation from fans, garnering over 2.16 million pre-orders by January 25. The K-pop quintet has started its year off on a high, breaking its previous record of 1.4 million pre-orders for minisode 2: Thursday’s Child. Soobin, leader of the group, said “this album is one that we worked harder than ever on.”
The Name Chapter: TEMPTATION continues TXT’s concept storyline by showcasing the emotions young people on the brink of adulthood feel. With this release, they take it to an even more mature level while exploring new genres, showing growth from their previous, more heartbroken but rebellious title track “Good Boys Gone Bad.” The 5-song EP follows Soobin, Yeonjun, Beomgyu, Taehyun, and Huening Kai through their journey of temptation in avoiding adulthood and staying in the “freedom of Neverland.”
However, by the end of the EP, they say their goodbyes to Neverland and the lies that were fed to them while in the false safety net of the fictional world. They begin to accept their fate in adulthood and the challenges of the real world.
The Name Chapter: TEMPTATION starts with an all-English song “Devil by the Window” produced by Big Hit Music’s in-house producer Slow Rabbit. Listeners’ are immediately caught by the heavy bass line, hi-hat chinks, and smooth vocals. The almost hypnotizing melody and lyrics allude to the story of Peter Pan tempting the Lost Boys to follow him and how hard it is to resist.
In a lulling outro, Yeonjun sings “I’ll fly, weightless without a worry into the night.” The boys’ journey to Neverland thus begins.
Title track “Sugar Rush Ride” follows the boys to Neverland, with the music video showing them on the beach of the island. Slow Rabbit’s second creative credits of the album appear on this song, along with production credits for Salem Ilese, who previously collaborated with TXT on the single “PS5.”
The dance-pop song features lines from “Chunhyangga,” one of the five surviving traditional Korean musical narratives from the Joseon Kingdom, according to The Korea Times. With an alternative sound with a funky guitar, bewitching whistles, and seductive vocals, the title track lures listeners into Neverland.
Time in Neverland
“Happy Fools” features a collaboration with American rapper Coi Leray and has writing credits for all five members and Leray. The pop-rap song also includes a melody composed by Yeonjun. He said the experience has made his “ambition toward composing songs” grow. Since other members’ stories were told onto his melody he thinks “the song came to have an even more TXT-feel, so I want to say our MOA might like it more.”
The lyrics show that despite knowing that they are living in a false sense of paradise, the members would rather enjoy this time as “happy fools” than be brought to the reality of adulthood.
“Tinnitus (Wanna be a rock)” became an instant fan favorite, especially for Afro-Caribbean MOAs (TXT fans), due to the Afrobeats and 3-2 clave featured in the instrumental. The members’ tantalizing vocals also captivated fans with the catchy pre-chorus and memorable lyrics “Rockstar minus the star, just a rock, okay?” Yeonjun and Taehyun participated in writing the lyrics.
Fans compared the song to a scene from Academy Award nominated film Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022), where two main characters express the simplicity of being a rock.
The song shows the boys becoming more mindful of reality as the initial high of Neverland comes to an end. With the distraction fading, they “feel so lonely” in the daze and “empty noise” drowning them. Realizing their youthful dreams won’t be fruitful , the boys share their new wish to be a rock, to have their “own rock ‘n’ roll.”
The EP’s final track is appropriately titled “Farewell, Neverland.” The rock-based pop song with an accompanying acoustic guitar closes out the narrative told throughout the mini-album. Yeonjun participated in the production of the song, earning him songwriter credits.
While the members still have love for Neverland, they know it was “a paradise full of lies” that they originally “wanted to turn a blind eye” to, but now it’s time for them to say goodbye for good. While they’re afraid of what awaits them in reality, they believe it’s better than the “cruel lie” that they were living.
The “Sugar Rush Ride” music video ends with the members walking to a boat, presumably leaving Neverland after discovering the lies of the fictional world.
With their Peter Pan no longer aiding their flight, the boys free fall at full speed out of Neverland, straight to the ground in the real world.
MOAs can expect to see TXT soon on their upcoming second world tour, “Act: Sweet Mirage.” The 21-date tour, with more cities to come, starts on March 25 in Seoul.
Interested in more TXT content? Read about TXT’s greatest achievements in 2022 here!