CRAVITY's Liberty in full colors
Setting a new personal sales record with their newest album Liberty: In Our Cosmos, CRAVITY’s comeback is sure to have people talking. The k-pop group, which has been referred to as «ones to watch» by no other than Forbes, is ready to reach new heights and explore various musical genres from one track to the next.
Liberty: In Our Cosmos shows a more youthful side to the group, composed of nine members (Serim, Allen, Jungmo, Woobin, Wonjin, Minhee, Hyeongjun, Taeyoung, and Seongmin). The inspiration behind the name, CRAVITY, came to fruition through the combination of “Creativity” and “Gravity,” Starship Entertainment's new boy band for the first time in five years since Monsta X. CRAVITY, which is also an acronym for “Center of Gravity,” is meant to attract/gravitate listeners into their unique universe, by pulling them in with their creativity, charm, and pure talent.
Panorama had a chance to talk with the boys about the album, its lead track - aptly called Adrenaline - and their plans for the future.
Congratulations on your comeback. How does it feel?
SEONGMIN: I'm very nervous! We all have been practicing hard for this comeback, so I can't wait to show our music and performance.
WONJIN: There were a lot of ups and downs, so it feels great to think that the comeback is right around the corner. The anticipation is real! We are also excited to be able to show a new CRAVITY to the world.
Your new album is called Liberty: In Our Cosmos. Can you tell us more about it?
TAEYOUNG: Previously, we caught the eyes of many with our powerful image, but this time, we transformed into this outburst of youthful energy.
ALLEN: The title of this album suggests that we have finally found the freedom we’ve been yearning for after overcoming our inner struggles. Just like stars in the cosmos, we are living in a place where we feel the happiest and most liberated. It is a story that is completed by forming solidarity with fans whom we were destined to meet. By raising the bond of sympathy, this album will provide an exclusive experience to the listeners by presenting an immersive storyline that will surely make them curious about what’s next to come.
This is part two of your journey. You started with The Awakening: Written in Stars. And now you have a whole Cosmo. What did change during the past months in your lives?
HYEONGJUN: As the overall theme of this album is quite different from what we’ve shown in the past, we tried to put more of our bright, energetic, and youthful sides into this album. We tried to truly enjoy every moment of the album preparation process so that our energy comes across our music.
WOOBIN: There was a change in my mind in that I started to think more openly about our music and concept. I’m sure all of us had various directions in mind while trying out many different styles in this album.
In this album, you are showcasing for the first time a more youthful side, and you portray the meaning of Liberty in full colors. What does it mean to you to “be free”?
MINHEE: To enjoy as I am doing now! I think that is what it means to be free.
JUNGMO: I think being free means that we can meet our fans more easily than before. We have been restricted from doing many things that were deemed “normal” in the past. I hope that day comes soon!
Let’s talk about the lead track. Adrenaline. Can you tell us more about the concept behind it?
SERIM: As HYEONGJUN mentioned, the vibe of Adrenaline is different from our past lead tracks. You’ll be able to see a more youthful, cool, and refreshing CRAVITY.
SEONGMIN: The lyrics of Adrenaline express our longing for freedom. So we wore school uniforms to show the bright vibe that matches this refreshing song.
The MV shows you finally finding hope in despair. Do you have some inner worries or struggles you are fighting against?
WONJIN: Of course, I sometimes worry about the uncertain future just like anyone else would. But since I have my members and LUVITYs by my side, I don’t get too deep inside these worries.
TAEYOUNG: I don’t have any particular inner worries. Even if I had one, I usually try to see the good side of things to not get caught up in my fears.
The album is composed of eight tracks, Serim and Allen contributed to writing three of them. How was the creative process?
SERIM: We looked over each other’s lyrics and monitored together when recording. Allen helped me out a lot since I used a lot of English in my lyrics.
ALLEN: The lyrics behind my verses were inspired by the song’s title in itself. For example, in Adrenaline, I am comparing the adrenaline in my body to “lighting” and that I would willingly overdose on “you” as if “venom” is running through my veins. The lyrics for POW! were actually inspired by zombies. In my verse, I portrayed myself as a zombie who fell in love at first sight that doesn’t eat brains but rather “needs your heart” and as a zombie with a “picture-perfect smile” who protects instead of attacking. For the outro, I was able to show a more vulnerable side of myself in my lyrics. Though we’ve achieved freedom and liberty through this album, I still feel a sense of doubt and uncertainty for the future. Nevertheless, I would still search across the cosmos for “you and I” so that we may continue on this journey together to reach new heights.
Which is your favorite track of this album, and why?
HYEONGJUN: My favorite track is Late Night. I love the lyrics so much.
MINHEE: Adrenaline for sure! It reminds me of my student days and my heart flutters for some reason (laughs).
You debuted in 2020, one of the most challenging years in our era. Still, you were named Super Rookie and won various music awards. If you look back at when you started, do you have any advice for the you that’s about to debut?
JUNGMO: When I was a trainee, I could only dream of debuting. But I’ve realized that debut is just the beginning, and we have entered a new race. So just do your best and work hard! That’s all I can say.
WOOBIN: You WILL do well, and you ARE doing well. Never lose your passion! Let’s go!!
CRAVITY has two meanings, Creativity + Gravity but also Center of Gravity. Which one do you feel it’s closer to you?
ALLEN: I feel like Creativity + Gravity both resonated with me when I first heard our group name, CRAVITY. I knew right away what exact words were combined to make the name, and I thought the idea of creating a new word from combining two existing words was just genius (does the *Chef’s kiss* gesture).
WOOBIN: I think “Gravity” feels closer to me because I want the listeners of our music to gravitate towards us and continue to stick with us.
You did your promotion virtually during the pandemic. But now you are ready to perform live in South Korea. What do you think would be your first thought while entering the stage?
MINHEE: I think I’ll feel super grateful for LUVITYs who have waited for us and stuck by our side through thick and thin.
TAEYOUNG: That I was meant to be here! That I was meant to be on this stage and to meet LUVITYs!
Monsta X are your sunbae. You previously talked about your relationship with the group. Did they give you any suggestions for this comeback?
JUNGMO: MONSTA X sunbaenims always support us and give lots of encouraging words, so it’s hard to pick just one right now.
WONJIN: MONSTA X is now more of a hyung presence to us, rather than being distant sunbaenims. They’re very trusty, and we can always reach out to them whenever we seek advice. There are also a lot of enjoyable moments that we’ve spent with them, so we’re very thankful for their existence.
What “being an idol” does it mean to you?
SERIM: Being an idol means “happiness” since I got to meet LUVITYs, whom I can’t imagine being without.
HYEONGJUN: A “dream.” It has always been my dream, and luckily enough, I’m experiencing things that most people can’t. I have never regretted a single moment of being an idol.
Do you have any dream collaborations?
SEONGMIN: I want to perform with our senior, MONSTA X. They truly inspire and motivate me to not give up and keep working hard. It would be an honor to be able to perform and collaborate with them.
ALLEN: I would love to collaborate with Stray Kids one day. I genuinely admire their music and artistry, so collaborating with them would present a unique experience not only for us but also for the listeners.
If you can describe your new album in one word, which would it be?
WOOBIN: The first step towards Liberty
You are a group of nine; some may see it as a disadvantage. How do you feel about it?
SERIM: I have never thought of it as a disadvantage. In fact, I love having nine members on our team. Although it may be loud and hectic sometimes, I just love the dynamics among ourselves. That is our charm and what makes our group fun and enjoyable.
MINHEE: It always feels like a large family has gathered to celebrate the holiday season together haha. I love the hustle and bustle that comes from having nine members!
It’s said that teamwork makes the dream work. Which is CRAVITY’s dream?
HYEONGJUN: They always say to dream big. So… entering the Billboard charts!
SEONGMIN: I want to make CRAVITY's music known to many people. I also want to be with LUVITYs for a long long time.
Who is Cravity now? And what should we expect from you?
JUNGMO: CRAVITY is always a hard-working group that tries to communicate with LUVITYs a lot. You can expect to see our new concept along with our new look in this album! Hope you love it!
WONJIN: I guess you can say that it’s a more liberated and younger CRAVITY. Please see how much we’ve improved! We’re ready to enjoy and have fun on stage.