You may not recognise them but they’ve been making appearences in the Korean music scene for the past five years now.
This is ONEWE, a five-member alternative rock band from South Korea. The members consist of main vocalist Yonghoon, drummer Harin, guitarist Kanghyun, keyboardist Donymeong, and bassist and rapper, CyA.
ONEWE was formed in May 2015, as an independent group. At this point, they were known as M.A.S 0094. The letters in their name stood for Make A Sound, the 0094 representative of the birth years of the oldest and youngest members of the band. They had been performing publicly with setlists consisting of well-known songs, and the profits from their performances going to charities.
In August 2016, whilst under Modern Music, they officially made their debut with their song, After 15 Seconds, even performing this on the music television show, The Show.
In the summer of 2017, the band moved to RBW – the same entertainment company as girl-group Mamamoo, and boygroup, VROMANCE. Their move to RBW prompted a name change, with them simply dropping the numbers from their name and becoming known as MAS. Under the new name, they participated in the reality television series, The Unit. During the seventh episode, four members were unfortunately eliminated – Harin (52nd), Yonghoon (58th), CyA (59th), and Kanghyun (61st). Only Donmyeong proceeded to the final of the show, however he too was eliminated, finishing in 16th place.
In the summer of 2018, a year after moving to RBW, the company announced that MAS would be re-debuting under another new name – ONEWE. Although they released a pre-debut single with their labelmates ONEUS, ONEWE’s official re-debut took place on May 13th 2019, with the release of their first single album, 1/4, and the lead single, Reminisce About All.
Since then, they have continued to release music on a regular basis. Their latest release was in June of this year, with Planet Nine: Alter Ego – an EP consisting of 7 tracks. Last week, however, marked the sixth anniversary of their first digital single, Butterfly, Find A Flower (albeit under the name of M.A.S 0094), and to celebrate I’d like to share with you my five favourite tracks from the boys. I hope you are able to enjoy their music as much as I do!
AuRoRa is a powerful song from the band’s latest EP. Ideal to listen to during the early hours of the morning, particularly if traveling, the song is made up of so many intricate different elements including guitar riffs. In particular, I love how clear the bass is in this track, and Kanghyun’s guitar solo is probably one of my favourites – not just from ONEWE, but from within the realm of K-Rock band in general. That’s probably quite the statement to make, especially given how much talent there is out there nowadays, but there’s just something about it that I just like a lot.
The original track of Parting is great, don’t get me wrong. It’s arguably the song that truly cemeneted my stance on just how talented the ONEWE boys are. However, WEVE (the name for the fans of ONEWE) were treated especiallly well with this track. Not only were we blessed with the original track, but we also received an acoustic version of it, as well as a version especially made for Halloween, and my favourite version – a version of the track made for Chuseok (the Korean thanksgiving festival). Featuring CyA playing the danso, a traditional Korean flute usually used in folk music, the version is also a lot softer than the original, adding an additional emotional layer to it. With the many differnet versions of Parting, ONEWE truly showed off their talents.
This track is probably the most upbeat song on this list. Written primarily by CyA, he drew inspiration for this track by reminiscing about a girl he liked back in kindergarten called Veronica. He didn’t confess and he kept his distance from her, but how lucky is she to have a song written just for her? Yonghoon and Kanghyun also participated in the writing of this song and it has such as summery vibe to it. I absolutely love Kanghyun’s solo in this track and I love the electronic instrumental played out by Dongmyeong. It’s definitely a song of ONEWE’s that I want to see performed live!
Regulus is arguably one of the prettiest songs ONEWE have released. The delicate guitar within the insturmental of the song is so calming, and paired with Yonghoon’s soft vocals makes for easy listening. A ballad, it’s arguably one of the more emotional songs on the list but it definitely manages to soothe me when I’m feeling a little agitated, and is one track that manages to showcase everyone’s talents – Yonghoon and Dongmyeong’s vocals, CyA’s rapping, Kanghyun’s guitar, and Harin’s percussion – everything is pieced together perfectly, and I can’t help but feel the passion they put in this song.
It’s currently the middle of August, the height of summer, and this track is perfect for the summer! I can’t help but imagine listening to this whilst soaking up the sun’s rays by a swimming pool or by the ocean. Ideal also for a summer drive, I absolutely love joining in on the little “brr brr” parts of the chorus. It’s such a small part of the song, sure, but it makes it so, so enjoyable for me! CyA’s lines for the final part of the song are easy to sing along to as well. This song is simply easy to enjoy in every way possible!
Are you a fan of ONEWE? Let me know your favourite songs in the comments below!