K-Pop — Dreamcatcher Recall
Dreamcatcher Makes Final Preparations For Their Comeback Voyage, Exciting Fans
Audio teasers of the K-Pop group’s upcoming 8th Mini Album dropped this past week, building anticipation for their late May 2023 release along with other news.
Even though I’ve been through this experience many times over the past six years or so, the week before comeback has been always been pretty exciting for me. We get to see the last lead-up to the album, and hear, in many cases, the first bits of the music to come. Old theories based on pictures and teasers are supported or discarded, and new ones get formed based on what people listen to on just the barest reveal of the tracks. Variety appearance schedules begin to pop up and are confirmed. Most importantly, the knowledge that new Dreamcatcher music is not just on its way, but imminent, is one of the best feelings.
But as is always the case with Dreamcatcher, there wasn’t just news about what’s coming up on May 24th. There’s a lot to get into here, so let’s check out all the Dreamcatcher news from the past week!
Just in time to make room for new content, Dreamcatcher released their last Behind for the recent 2023 US tour. We had a little bit of everything from this final video, from trolling moments to trends during the tours (Yoohyeon, someday you’ll stop having to ask Siri where your phone is) to fashion insights and finally heartfelt thank yous and happiness on closing everything out with relative smoothness. As always, Dreamcatcher seems to be at their best when they see their fans appreciate and enjoy what they’re doing, and that was certainly the case here.
Speaking of the recent tour, data was finally released from the touringdata Twitter which relies on direct box office reports from venues. While ticketing was likely less than the last tour’s ticket sales by perhaps a few thousand, with the shorter on-sale period (one month versus two) and overestimation of venue-fill potential perhaps contributing to undersales (with Reading having to be moved), revenue appears to even out. This, I think, was due to a much stronger VVIP/VIP package and merchandise sales (the jerseys, the highest-priced item were frequently gone on multiple stops), which likely show an overall profit for this tour. The good news is that all the shows looked appreciably filled, the show logistics were solid with few issues, and Dreamcatcher Company can take this data, learn from it, and plan even better for the next region they head to. Tours are the group’s bread and butter, and always have been, so I have confidence things will be just fine. They certainly seemed to be from the group’s perspective, if all of the Notes were any indication.
A not-so-fine thing that happened last week was an incident where a propped door during cleaning time at the Dreamcatcher Company building led to a random fan trespassing and taking photos inside, including one of themselves. The post, shared to both Reddit and Facebook, was swiftly removed after it was discovered these pictures were taken without permission, and Dreamcatcher Company moved to clarify what should be obvious policy — don’t intrude on private property, as it’s a crime, and don’t lurk around it hoping to get photos or interactions with the group. While fans are certainly excited to see Dreamcatcher at any opportunity they can, there are, of course, limits, and hopefully, they’re more obviously known now.
In lighter news back on the home front, Dreamcatcher’s leader held an early birthday livestream on the 16th on the Weverse platform. Aside from seeing and hearing that trademark JiU kindness and happiness for making it another trip around the sun, we got a few interesting upcoming album tidbits. Some of these included the fact that JiU ranked upcoming title track “BONVOYAGE” as her favorite title track of all of the discography, and that across the board things felt fresh from a musical style standpoint. We’ll get into those thoughts a bit later, but on the whole it does seem that the group is eager to share what things sound like and have been trying especially hard not to leak anything that could be considered a spoiler for the album. With only a few days til we know for sure, we won’t have to wait long.
The comeback variety train is chugging out of the station for Dreamcatcher this past week as well, with Weekly Idol leading the charge. Just the episode preview alone speaks to Dreamcatcher being their entertaining and loud selves as normal, with new MCs not stopping them from being completely unbothered with their interactions. As I’ve said before, this could be a great match for newly-minted ex-Lovelyz soloist Mijoo, who’s always been known to be extra, and for Eunkwang, who is more than familiar with Dreamcatcher’s antics from prior interactions. As always, I’m sure it’ll be a fun appearance for the group.
K-909, an interview and performance show hosted by long-time K-Pop and J-Pop artist BoA, also confirmed that they’re having Dreamcatcher on this past week, with a shared collaboration stage and interview with fellow globally-popular artists KARD. I’m always down for new variety from Dreamcatcher, as it shows they continue to climb the ladder of shows. On a personal note I’m excited for this because I’ve appreciated BoA since she cut her teeth in Japan doing songs — one of which, well-known InuYasha closing song “Every Heart”, was actually covered by JiU, Siyeon, and Handong at a Japanese show in 2017. With that small set of crumbs, we already have a mild connection between the group and MC BoA, and as pre-recording for the episode took place the day this article is being published, we’ll be seeing that connection actually get some legs.
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Esquire Korea also confirmed another shoot (their third) with Dreamcatcher this past week. We can always count on the channel to provide some of the best and most fashionable looks for Dreamcatcher during comebacks, and from what fans have seen in a couple of shorts from the shoot, that’s going to be the case this time around as well. I’m most interested in whatever concept film they may choose for the group this time around. The prior ones, like this one from 2021’s Summer Holiday era, have always been interesting and in conjunction with a theme, so we’ll have to see what they come up with for fans this time.
CeCi Korea continued their work with Dreamcatcher this past week as well. Content with JiU and Yoohyeon, who participated in a photoshoot and photobook release in Thailand earlier in the year, was honestly expected, but SuA being tapped to do their travel guide/foodie vlog series Travel Seoul was a nice surprise. Both videos highlighted some nice moments for all participants, and everyone was well-fed with great food and drink. I’ve appreciated this collaboration a lot overall, but I think showing Dreamcatcher express their love for good food (and in JiU’s case, good alcohol) is a nice way to highlight a casual, yet more mature image. That said, I was definitely hungrier after watching all the food content above.
It may have been a bit of a warmup, but last week saw Dreamcatcher make an appearance to perform 2022 title track “MAISON” at the Blue House concert in Korea. The building, the equivalent of the US’s White House, celebrated its anniversary, so having Dreamcatcher sing about a house they want to protect seemed fairly appropriate. Once again, it’s nice to see some of these random domestic gigs come Dreamcatcher’s way — while the impact of having them is anyone’s guess, just being able to do so or have the clout to be able to be invited is another argument towards their relative sustainability, even domestically.
All of this, however, leads us straight to comeback-land, and that’s undoubtedly the main event of this past week’s news. We learned the Track List early in the week, confirming the title track is indeed called “BONVOYAGE”. Of other interest is B-Side “DEMIAN”, with fans’ quick searches revealing a novel about a character who deals with the duality of illusion and reality and realizes a sense of self. Whether or not it’s this or something else entirely is something we may find out during interviews for the comeback — but it piqued a bunch of interest for sure.
The highlight medley was, as usual, the biggest reveal of the week. The instrumental “From Us” intro teased fans with a piano-like segment that seemed haunting and ethereal, while “BON VOYAGE” grabbed the spotlight with a build to a power vocal and instrumentation that reminded fans of 2017’s bright, yet rock-heavy “Fly High”. “To. You”, at least for now, appears to be the standard ballad inclusion. But it was “DEMIAN”, featuring Gahyeon coming back to her Lead Rapper role and Dami letting out a heavy metal-like scream, that turned a lot of heads, followed quickly by what seems to be all-English track “Propose”, with lyrics reminiscent of 2021’s obsession-fueled title track “BEcause”.
To me, this sound is distinctly closer to old-school Dreamcatcher, leaning more into the rock versus the electronic-based hybrid genre pop they’ve been working with recently. Neither style is bad, but with the confirmed departure of LEEZ due to his exclusive contract with Hi-Hat Entertainment, Ollounder and the others within the Edenary group appear to be taking things back to Dreamcatcher’s rock core. The difference is that there’s been years of vocal, instrumental, and production refinement on the part of the group and its staff, so it feels like the group’s insistence on a new and fresh sound will turn out to be accurate in more ways than one. We’ll find out soon, as the confirmed comeback Showcase and its associated events ensure we will have something live to look forward to for release day.
The comeback’s signs have all been sent (even the one where SuA and Yoohyeon post a funny choreography video to social media, as above), so by this time next week I’ll have an article chock-full of album impressions, week one comeback updates, and tons of performances and appearances. For all that, and more, we’ll see you then!