K-Pop — Dreamcatcher Recall
Dreamcatcher Celebrates Their Sixth Anniversary, Showing Fans The Reason They Continue In K-Pop
A special mystery code, livestream, and the first fan song in four years highlighted Dreamcatcher’s anniversary celebration of six years in the industry.
NOTE: Hey there readers! A brief note before I get started — I just put into open beta testing a brand new resource — a Dreamcatcher Video Database, searchable and filterable by tags and metadata, and containing most of Dreamcatcher’s video content to date, at over 3,500 entries and counting! I’ve been working on this project for over a year, and I’d love to hear what you think, so go check it out and then find me on social media or comment in this article with any feedback. Thanks in advance!
As expected, Dreamcatcher had plans to celebrate their sixth anniversary with fans, knowing that they'd be looking forward to kicking off another year with the group. With a year of amazing achievements behind them and a contract renewal freshly inked, the group’s future seemed to be assured, so curiosity increased as to what exactly Dreamcatcher would have in store, and they didn’t disappoint.
Let’s get right into what happened during Dreamcatcher’s anniversary week!
The group is still going through a metric ton of prior work and content, and none of that changed during anniversary week. A double helping of Dreamcatcher’s Notes that went over all the fun, chaos, and elegance of the group’s 2nd annual Season’s Greetings photoshoots dropped onto the channel, with the group talking excitedly about, among other things, how these different concepts give them a chance to stretch their legs from a visual standpoint. The dark and serious nature of their normal concepts and album releases means that getting to see Dreamcatcher in a different environment, such as a flower garden or at a diner, is a nice break for them. Of course, even the hardest working photoshoots deserve a bit of levity, and watching moments like SuA shuffling Yoohyeon around in a shopping cart was, as always, great fun. Season’s Greetings packages have been arriving for fans over the past couple of weeks and it seems folks are quite satisfied with what they’ve gotten this year.
This week also had Dreamcatcher head into their first concert in VR, as the group released their 2-part, 30 minute performances onto the Meta Quest platform for free for the first week, along with a nice Dreamcatcher’s Note about how the group managed to film all of the foreboding, close-up scenes that viewers got to experience during their 6-song set. It was nice to see a throwback to the old “Nightmare” storyline (though arachnophobes might want to skip out on some of the scenes and the jumpscares) but also the fact that Dreamcatcher themselves served as both guides and protectors of the viewer who had inadvertently stumbled into their VR-powered dimension.
For those that don’t have a Meta Quest lying around for this, VENTA X did release a playlist of the concert in both Korean and English subtitles. Subscribing to the VENTA X YouTube channel for $13/month gets you access, allowing you to re-live Dreamcatcher going old-school with their lore but going modern for the most part with their concert-ready song selections. As I said before, it’s just another way of Dreamcatcher and Dreamcatcher Company branching out and trying new things in order to present their performances to fans, so be sure to check out “The Curse Of The Spider” 3D VR Concert if you have the time and the money.
As expected, we had a sixth anniversary livestream from the group, and not only did we manage to see that Handong made it back from China safe and sound but that the group as a whole managed to take a nice vacation for themselves over the past month. Talking about their various travels, experiences, and family holiday moments, Dreamcatcher seemed recharged and ready to get to work. The livestream had a bit of a classic feel to it, filmed in their practice room as they sat in two neat rows, a throwback to some of their early content on now-defunct platform VLIVE.
Back in those days, you’d see fun stuff like the group holding a mock game show or touring their dorm, and for this livestream things appeared to hail back to those days at one point. As such, the group got to do a fun little cake decorating relay, with each member getting one minute to contribute, resulting in an eclectic mix of color and style that was very much like Dreamcatcher. Filled with moments that were heartwarming, comedic, loud, and chaotic, this was very much what we’ve come to expect with Dreamcatcher anniversary vlives, though they did have to cut it short due to time.
The reason for that was of course a good one, as Dreamcatcher’s 2nd generation fanclub application process was set to open. For those who don’t know, K-Pop fan clubs are purchased memberships which grant exclusive or specific benefits to those who buy-in. Fan club members typically get a welcome kit with physical items or merchandise and gain access to a dedicated section of the artist’s/group’s fancafe (online community site) where content not posted elsewhere may be put up. Dreamcatcher last ran one in 2019, and have been due to have folks re-up their memberships for quite some time. Though 1st generation fan club benefits seemed to be a little few and far between, the hope from fans is that Dreamcatcher Company have learned from their previous fan club iteration, and will do even better this time around. There’s an entire notice on the group’s official fan cafe about how to apply, and with applications only open for two weeks, a short while to pay the membership fee and get in. Most international fans will only really benefit from having the kit, so if you’re at all interested in what might be included, you can see JiU and SuA unbox the 1st generation fankit if you like.
All of what I have talked about so far, however, are side dishes to the main course, and fans got a sense of that when a Special Mystery Code dropped early in the week. Mystery Codes are typically reserved for comeback album releases, so between this and the previous Behind photo postings, speculation ran rampant about a possible early return for Dreamcatcher. But the fact that the code was labeled “special”, and that Dreamcatcher had just returned from vacation, seemed to go against that argument due to comeback prep time. The code seemed to recognize that this was the first year that matched up perfectly with the group’s debut year, putting their anniversary on, of all days, Friday the 13th — an apt debut date for a group based on dark concepts and a horror lore story.
With perhaps no comeback on the horizon, that left one other distinct possibility — the thought that this might be a fan song, the first one in four years and which would add to previous titles “Full Moon” and “Over The Sky”. The fans who guessed this were rewarded with the title track spoiler “REASON”, which ended up making Gahyeon’s mock CeCi Korea cover with the colored letters a spoiler from almost a month ago.
The music video, which dropped right at 18:00 KST on Dreamcatcher’s anniversary day, was filled with sentimental and feelgood moments from Dreamcatcher’s six year career so far, with an animation that showed the group, commonly depicted as “stair idols” (those who gradually get better through slow, but hard work and climbing) faltering on the journey, but being supported and sustained by their fans.
The song itself is a wonderful blend of the group’s older, hard rock core sound and their modern, hybridized, more electronically focused one, and the result is a satisfying tune that is both heartwarming and energetic (the crowd cheer during the chorus is sure to be a hit at concerts). The group rolled out what now seems to be a triple rap line of Dami, Gahyeon, and SuA for this song, and power vocals by Siyeon, Yoohyeon and even JiU were peppered with Handong’s soft, solid, but iconic opening of most of the song’s verses, including the English line “We are always with InSomnia/We can spend more time”.
For fans like me who have been into the group since debut year, it was a very cool look back at the best of Dreamcatcher, including moments pulled from both official footage and archival filming by staff. With the help of the aforementioned database project I referred to at the top of the article, here’s roughly where a small sample of those moments came from:
- Every comeback showcase’s full stage camera of that era’s title track performance
- “Nightmare” debut showcase — January 12th, 2017
- Dreamcatcher “Debut Stage” “Chase Me” on MBC Show! Music Core — January 14th, 2017
- Dreamcatcher “Crossroads: Utopia” concert — March 26th, 2021
- Dreamcatcher Inkigayo Fan Meeting — March 10th, 2019
- Dreamcatcher’s 1st Gen Fanclub meeting — October 10th, 2019
- Dreamcatcher 2022 Apocalypse: Follow Us tour (Paris) — November 24, 2022
- Dreamcatcher Halloween Busking — October 31, 2018
- Dreamcatcher’s 1st Music Show Win on MBC Show Champion — April 20, 2022
This was both a look back on some of Dreamcatcher’s long career and the message that I saw being conveyed was that it isn’t easy being an idol — the long hours, the sometimes hard and sluggish climb to the top, and the raw emotion that can come from it. We only see what’s in front of the camera, but from my experience working behind-the-scenes in events and with musical artists, it can definitely be tough on them mentally. To be sustained by the fans and, in the case of the music video, literally lifted up when times are hard, has been a recent theme in many of Dreamcatcher’s ments lately, so this fan song feels truly from the heart, and it shows. Though most certainly buoyed by a bit of ad buying, the music video is doing amazingly well, with 14 million views and counting in a matter of two days. For a fandom of moderate size like Dreamcatcher’s, that’s a really awesome thing, and goes to show how much the song resonates with fans. I know I’ve had it on repeat a lot this past weekend, and hope you have as well.
The year has just begun for Dreamcatcher, but they’ve already given fans a gift with new music that the fandom can’t seem to get enough of. There’s sure to be even more exciting things on the horizon for Dreamcatcher, so if you want to keep up with things, be sure to come back here next Sunday for more Dreamcatcher news! Until then, as usual hit the claps, subscribes and the signal boosts, and know that I’ll be back reporting on the latest on the group in the weeks to come as they enter their sixth year.