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[Review] LOONA debut as 12 with “FavOriTe” and prove to be worth the wait

LOONA effectively got underway back towards the end of 2016, and now just under two years later, we finally get to see all 12 girls together in a release. While I was among those skeptical of the efficacy of this debut plan, ultimately it won me over, mainly due to the quality of the musical offerings. “Favorite” then is an appropriate introduction to LOONA as a whole since it effectively showcases what they’re capable of.

While the girls definitely had visuals, a sound, and even world building, I did wonder whether how the vocals would mesh as a group. Fortunately, there wasn’t much to worry about, as they melded together surprisingly well. Most importantly, the song was intense with the focus on percussion throughout standing out and powering it forward. Since during the verses there’s a lot of space between those hits, the vocals of the girls are relied on to carry sections, and they do it admirably with rhythm and a bit of snap to their delivery.

The brass synths and electronic elements also did work, and “FavOriTe” had a great rising build of a pre-chorus that actually pays off not with an instrumental drop, but with a head-nodding chorus. It’s well executed through and through, and the “youuuuu my fa-vo-rite” refrain was an instant gem. Hell, they even somehow made the random “brrrrrrrrrrra” over the chorus work, as the ad-libs did seem to fit the general theme of the song. Granted, there was a lot going on, but they generally seemed to work it in cohesively nevertheless. The softer lulls would seem like something not to my liking, and they definitely weren’t my favorite sections, but they served the role of a sonic break for the listener fine enough.

After almost two years of build, LOONA was surely under a lot of pressure to deliver something spectacular for a finished product as 12, and fortunately “Favorite” seems to just about do that. It’s an energetic beginning for them that doesn’t lose its luster on repeated listens thanks to the song providing just enough twists and turns, plus the pre-chorus and chorus just kill it. So needless to say, this debut definitely has me anticipating their next move.

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