K-Pop — Dreamcatcher Recall
Dreamcatcher Unleashes Their Comeback VISION As Fans Celebrate 7th Mini Album Release
Comeback week for Dreamcatcher’s latest music in 2022 is here, and the group did not disappoint with an onslaught of new content and a hard-charging, forward-marching title track.
Dreamcatcher’s latest comeback in 2022 is finally here, but looking back on how the group work has gone lately, the six months since the last one have basically flown by. With the fact that Dreamcatcher launched into several appearances and a whole tour over the summer since their first comeback of the year in April, fans have been consistently fed a content drip that hasn’t let up. This is ultimately a good thing for many reasons, not the least of which is a busy K-Pop group is a sustainable and sought-after one, but more than that, it showcases how dedicated Dreamcatcher is to their craft and in continuously evolving and improving it.
As such, there was an onslaught of first-week content for the group as well as news about a ton of upcoming events, so without further ado, let’s get right into everything that happened this week for the launch of 7th Mini Album “Apocalypse: Follow Us”!
The last of the pre-comeback schedule kicked off the week, with the “VISION” MV teaser bringing up the rear of what I think had been building as one of the biggest anticipations of a title track in a very long time. I believe the reason, in my opinion, was primarily because Dreamcatcher and Dreamcatcher Company had purposefully decided to hide the chorus of the song throughout all of their audio pre-comeback content. This was a deviation from prior comebacks (you can look at BEcause, Odd Eye, and BOCA for three such examples where chorus lines or music were clearly revealed) and I think created a sense of intrigue around what we’d get. The few snippets revealed a chorus that might harken back to the harder sound of their prior work, but didn’t confirm it. Aside from this, the video’s reveal showed what appeared to be a return to the hybridized physical + CG sets from comebacks prior to MAISON, with a styling reveal of minimalist black outfits and a choreography with just a taste of the pleasing visual presentation we’ve come to expect since Hwang Sooyeon took over as Dreamcatcher Company’s Performance Director in 2019. All in all, this was a nice final step towards the comeback, with the news that the comeback showcase would be free as in the past for online viewers a nice bonus, and confirmation for yet more release day content everyone could enjoy.
Release, of course, brought with it the album to everyone’s ears at 6pm KST. I’m still likely to put in my thoughts about the album in a separate article (stay tuned for that), but for now, I can say that while I like last comeback’s “MAISON” just a little bit more, “VISION” headlines “Apocalyse: Follow Us” as a return to Dreamcatcher’s harder rock roots, leaning back more into the core that made the group unique in the first place, with alternative rock B-side “Fairytale” serving as a secondary anchor in this regard. The result is an unapologetic charge into the battle lines the group’s characters have drawn against those who have destroyed the planet, an inspirational dark techno/industrial rock/metal anthem whose chorus encourages you to stand up and take notice. It’s the perfect title track to embody the idea of broadcasting a message to “follow” Dreamcatcher as a literal army of good envisioning a better world for all, and is immensely satisfying as a result.
We got to hear B-sides “Rainy Day” and “Fairytale” during the Press and fan Comeback Showcases, respectively, as well as see the full choreography for “VISION” on display. Both B-side performances once again showed off Dreamcatcher’s diversity of vocal talent as they sang both emotional ballad and feel-good alternative rock with the same poise and energy that has gotten them through five years of comebacks. And the constant levels and complexity on display for the stage performance of “VISION”, including some truly satisfying synchronous moments (even by Dreamcatcher standards) showed off both how much more intensive and layered Dreamcatcher’s title track choreography has been compared to other girl groups. I was definitely looking forward to music show stages after seeing all of these live performances from the group.
Dreamcatcher’s official YouTube channel wasted no time jumping straight into comeback mode, with five videos plus the aforementioned “VISION” comeback showcase performance video uploaded this week. A Dance Practice video, two jacket filming videos, and two fanchant guides are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to official YouTube channel content, and seeing much of the behind-the-scenes stuff (including, as always, some fun moments between the members) will never fail to be entertaining. It’s clear the group, company, and staff poured a ton of energy and preparation into this comeback in particular and went for…well, a “vision” that they wanted to execute for fans and for themselves. It’s only the first week but we’ve already learned so much about the leadup to this week’s release — I’m looking forward to more.
This week’s schedule certainly took a lot out of the group, but that didn’t stop Lead Vocalist Yoohyeon from dropping in quickly into Weverse Live to talk to fans. Besides the usual responses and general excitement she conveyed for the comeback, Yoohyeon also modeled what at the time was a sampler for upcoming event “Apocalypse: Broken Halloween” — a varsity-style jacket with some Halloween-themed iconography and partial lyrics to fan song “Full Moon”, along with Dreamcatcher’s current logos. A concern with one of the jacket’s symbols led to Yoohyeon assuring fans that the final product would be altered to avoid controversy (though I honestly felt given what anyone can research in detail about it would have shown there wouldn’t have been a problem as it was shown, I get why it was changed and why there was uneasiness among some fans). Putting that aside, it was nice of Yoohyeon to roll in even for a few minutes — as we’ll find out further down in this article, there was a good reason why we haven’t seen them on a live stream as often as we have in the past, but all of the scheduling for this comeback in particular seems to be more intense than in the past.
Obviously one of the treats of comebacks are the live performances, and with the exception of the cancellation of MBC’s Show! Music Core for the KBO Baseball Playoffs, we got a full slate of them with two different styles and a contrast of colors. M! Countdown and Simply K-Pop’s deep red served as a nice pop to the eyes while Music Bank and Inkigayo’s simple black with accents of purples and golds showed how even a dark primary color can be aesthetically pleasing. Additionally, Music Bank gave us the confirmation that the minimalist black, rebel fighter-style outfits will make an appearance for performances, a nice difference in look from the crisp military-style uniforms of one of the album’s group picture sets. As always, the live vocals were on point and all of the associated fancams showed Dreamcatcher at their individual best, so be sure to check them out on YouTube if you get a chance!
On the events front, Dreamcatcher Company and Dreamcatcher were busy as well. Two pop-up stores (one through Everline and one for the Broken Halloween concert), an announcement of a traditional offline fansign event to be held in Berlin during the EU tour, and details of the aforementioned Broken Halloween’s merchandise offerings (both for online ordering as well as offline purchase) meant there were plenty of opportunities for both domestic and international fans to support the group. The varsity jacket, now modified from Yoohyeon’s Weverse live appearance and which was seen during the group’s arrival to Music Bank, is the most notable addition, but individual group member masks based on their associated favorite animals along with a photo binder and eco bag are among some of the other new interesting merchandise. If that wasn’t enough, MyMusicTaste has their own merchandise offerings for the upcoming Halloween event along with tickets that went on sale for both offline and online attendance. The company even decided to get a coffee truck for their fans for the SBS Inkigayo broadcast and held an old-school type fanmeeting to greet people.
We’re only a week into the latest comeback and we can tell that Dreamcatcher is going to be (and has already been) occupied with a ton of things this month and moving forward, as the company continues to find avenues for revenue beyond traditional channels.
On the variety front, however, is where Dreamcatcher’s and Dreamatcher Company’s onslaught of new content was felt the most. We had “known” appearances such as Part 2 of Dreamcatcher’s appearance on ACL Studio’s Idolstein (entertaining just for the involvement of egg experiments alone), another session with JiU and Sua and MC Kim Gura on Media S’s Latte9, as well as upcoming repeat appearances on comeback mainstays Weekly Idol, TongTongCulture, and Idol Radio, but after that came pretty much all-new appearances on new shows. The confirmations seemed to pour in this past week, from NAVER NOW’s “It’s Dream” on October 17th to Idol Plus’s Idol Live School, to Studio SS’s Group Profile, to CeCi Korea’s live performance on “VISION”, to an appearance full of fun idol challenges and games on Mubeat Live hosted by long-time friend ex-IZ*ONE member Kwon Eunbi, and last but not least, an honest-to-god “vacation/trip” variety show with new channel Idol World (another checkbox being ticked for Dreamcatcher for idol variety types).
The effort with which Dreamcatcher Company has been putting in lately in finding new ways to gain the group exposure speaks to their marketing acumen and desire to get the members in front of the domestic audience a bit more, through whatever new relationships they can forge. This is nice to see and shows that the company and group are aware of new opportunities beyond what fans expect for a comeback promotion period.
The week’s promotions were topped off by KPOP IDOL OLYMPIC’s one-on-one interview with Dreamcatcher leader JiU about their first win back in April as well as their journey from MINX, to re-debut, to now. This was a refreshingly honest interview and JiU doing her duty as the leader with her articulate and insightful answers to questions about how much hardship they had to go through, what their first win meant to them, and how she feels about overcoming challenges from a small company trying to survive in the K-Pop scene were some emotionally charged but ultimately wholesome content.
We rarely get interviews in the industry where topics about difficulties related to often reputation-based practices get addressed, and to have the company and JiU be allowed to speak on them is powerful and inspiring to fans. I highly recommend watching it, even for how short it is, because it will likely elicit some good feelings about the group’s achievements (especially this year) and for where they might go. If you’ve been reading my content over the past two-plus years on Dreamcatcher, you know that I appreciate and like them in part for their tenacious underdog story, and how they’ve risen to be a group in the K-Pop industry that has proven that non-traditional concepts can work and become sustainable with the right strategies and hard work. No matter how things turn out this promotion period or even for the future, it’s worthwhile to remember that Dreamcatcher has made their way on their own terms, and can do so feeling happy about the identity and achievements they’ve gotten despite many hurdles.
This article was a bear to put out this week, and the reason for that is just the sheer amount of content that Dreamcatcher and Dreamcatcher Company gave us. We have plenty more comeback schedule to go, so stayed tuned to here for the summaries and recaps of everything Dreamcatcher during “VISION” era, and be sure to clap, subscribe, and signal boost the article link to your fellow Dreamcatcher fans! See you next week as I recap the week 2 of Dreamcatcher’s latest music promotions.