NCT’s Doyoung finds confidence in solo debut after busy year

The past year was a challenging one for Doyoung, a member of K-pop supergroup NCT. He had to release three albums and embark on a world tour as a member while filling the void of Taeil, one of the group's main vocalists, as he took a break due to an injury. However, it was after overcoming such challenges that he realized he was ready to debut as a solo artist. "As a soloist, you always have to sing well without any mistakes. I realized I was ready to make a solo debut after spending the past year and began to prepare for this," he said during a group interview with local reporters held at the headquarters of SM Entertainment in Seoul on Friday. And then, things went really fast and it took only six months to actually make the full-length album, he recalled. The album, titled "Youth," is set to be released on Monday at 6 p.m., making him the third NCT member to go solo, following Taeyong and Ten. The release comes eight years after Doyoung's debut as a group member. Confident in his voice's ability to convey his message delicately and effectively, he hopes to introduce himself as a vocalist to the public through his first solo project. The 28-year-old explains that the album "Youth" captures a variety of emotions his peers in their 20s might experience growing up. "This album represents my youth. For me, youth is characterized by the memories of touring around the world for concerts with my bandmates. I believe these memories helped me make this album." Leading the 10-track album is "Little Light," a track combining a youthful, energetic band sound and his powerful and delicate vocal. "This may differ from what you've expected, but as a person who has loved band music since I was young, I don't find this choice unusual at all and rather it feels natural," he said, adding that he was in a band in high school and that this marks his first time presenting the music that he truly wants to do. He said he is now brainstorming ways to perform the song live with a band in TV music shows despite various restri ctions. Doyoung penned the lyrics for two songs -- "Beginning" and "From Little Wave." And he placed "Beginning," for which he is also credited as a co-composer, as the first track of the album as it portrayed his situation of opening a new chapter of his career as a soloist. This marked his first time to write a song, but it was not his first attempt to do so. "I've written songs before, but they were all rejected," he said, laughing. "The company liked this song very much, so I came to realize that my previous attempts might have been rejected because I didn't tell my own story. This time, my song was accepted probably because I honestly wrote what I wanted to tell and a story that I have." When asked about the album's message, he opened his answer citing the lyrics for the final track, in which he sings that only happy memories will remain with people at the end of their youth. "I wanted to convey the message that no matter how they spend their present moments and what processes they go through, they will face an ending with happy memories," he said. Source: Yonhap News Agency