Kmusic Review: EXO’s “XOXO (Hug & Kiss)”

I almost fangirled off my couch when I finally saw it myself on iTunes! EXO released their album “The 1st Album: XOXO” today!
At first I was worried, I kept clicking on it and it would say, “Temporarily Unavailable,” but it seems to be fixed now though.

The album was released on June 3rd at midnight, simultaneously on various online sites. Unlike the other EXO releases, it is not broken into two versions, but is one complete album with both versions on it.


1. Wolf: I admit it. I listened to the leaked version way back when it came out. I also can say that their pronunciation of “Wolf” was perfect. I don’t know why they changed it. Oh well, it can’t be helped. I love the tribal feel of the song, and yes, I giggle when they howl. But the beat is so amazing. The falsetto in the chorus is amazing, everything I expect of EXO. I know a lot of people don’t particularly like the “saranghaeyo,” and I myself am not particularly fond of it. The song as a whole, is okay.

2. Baby Don’t Cry: The piano introduction is beautiful. The drums and piano work well together, and the way the guitar comes in moves one’s heart. The chorus is gorgeous. One of my favorite songs right off the bat. They harmonize very well. I cried the first time I heard this. They have improved their ballad skills a lot since last year. The rap is smooth, and doesn’t detract from the song at all. Are they speaking French?, “La Amour?” Mon Dieu!, *fans self.* The last verse fades out into piano, which finishes the song perfectly. Well done.

3. Black Pearl: I love how it starts off quietly, and then builds up into the chorus. The rap doesn’t seem to fit the song. I like it, they do a good job, but I don’t think this song needed a rap breakdown. The part after the breakdown, was…I have no words. It’s a great song overall. Take out the rap, and it’s even better!

4. Don’t Go: Is a sweet ballad with a strong beat. That ‘ooh, hoo hoo‘ part is just so soothing. The way they build up to the chorus every time, gives me goosebumps. The bridge was a perfect build up, and Baekhyun‘s part was just phenomenal. The way the song is let down so softly is beautiful.

5. Let Out The Beast: A strong electronic beat starts the song out with a rap. The whole song is well rounded. I don’t find a part out of place. I’m not usually a fan of instrumental breakdowns, but seeing as there is so much rap in the song already, it fit the song very well.

6. 3.6.5: Guitar, cowbell. I like this song already. It’s a very sweet rock song. It would make a great road trip song. I love the “whoa oh oh~, oh” in the chorus. It’s got a bit of a Brit-rock vibe, but I think that’s part of its charm. I don’t know about anyone else, but it seemed to end too soon for me.

7. Heart Attack: Oh goodness. Auto-tune. Unnecessary in my opinion. As for the song, it’s good. It has a nice beat, the melody isn’t half bad either. It didn’t have a rap breakdown. Thank goodness, it’s fine without one. It’s an okay song. It would have been even better without the auto-tune.

8. Peter Pan: I wept when I first heard this song. No joke. I don’t know if it was because I was overwhelmed at EXO finally coming back, or if the song just got to me at the first listen. Either way, top 3 song right here. The guitar and drums give it a ‘traveling music’ kind of feel to it. All the Disney references had me thinking about my childhood. The song is beautifully composed and well put together. Oh, rap. It doesn’t need it. It’s a wonderful song, but it doesn’t need the rap. Even with the rap, when the song ended, I felt it ended too soon. It really is a beautiful song.

9. Baby: The beat is very dream-like. The whole song is very sweet and fluid. It flows well. The bridge, was oh my goodness! And no rap. I know it sounds like I hate their rapping, but I don’t! But there are some songs, such as ballads like this, that don’t need raps in them, and it doesn’t so I’m relieved. It’s a beautiful song.

10. My Lady: Very bluesy and jazzy. It has a sort of Michael Jackson-esque feel to it, especially when it goes, “Don’t be too late~.” And there’s the rap, it doesn’t need. It didn’t fit, I didn’t like it. Then it went back to basics. The song really didn’t get me. I heard a lot of hype about the song, since I guess it was on a teaser. I only watched Kai’s teaser out of curiosity, but then I didn’t look at any more. With all the hype and then actually listening to it myself, I was a little disappointed. It’s a nice song, just not for me.


The last two songs are the Korean and Chinese versions of “Wolf.” Overall, after a year of hearing nothing from EXO, this should be a breath of fresh air for EXOtics. It’s a great album, and I hope to hear more from them this year.



Article by: KareBare

Edited by: Jenny

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Hi there! I'm Alona Sass, manager and chief editor for the officiallykmusic website! I am 22 years old and I live in Northern California. I have loved K-pop for about 10 years now and I will forever hold all five members of DBSK as my favorite K-pop idols. My first ever Kpop Concert was in 2012 at KCON and I met some amazing celebs there! Since then, I've seen live SISTAR, VIXX, U-KISS, B.A.P., CNBLUE, Bangtan Boys, B1A4, G-Dragon, Teen Top, IU, Jung Joon Young, Spica, 2PM, Girls Day, Dynamic Duo, FTISLAND and more... YAAY~ =D I hope you love Kpop music as much as I do!



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