New single ‘Ah Yeah’ embodies everything about band WINNER [Interview]

Honest lyrics and upbeat melodies have been the trademark of the five-year-old K-pop boy band WINNER, as in their 2017 hit song “Really Really.”

The four-piece band aims to again embody the qualities unique to them in their latest extended play, “WE,” released Wednesday evening.

The six-track album is led by “Ah Yeah,” a summer dance song depicting a clean end to a romantic relationship. Its lyrics say: “If not for love, we are strangers … I am not sorry at all … I don’t care about your bloody tears … I don’t care if I am called trash.”

“We picked ‘Ah Yeah’ as the main track of the new album as we were searching for a song that is very new and WINNER-like,” Kang Seung-yoon, the member who composed the single, said during a group interview with Yonhap News Agency and several other media outlets on Thursday.

Upon its official release, the song topped the real-time daily singles charts on major local music streaming sites including Melon, Olleh, Bugs, Genie and Soribada.

Kang said he was inspired to write the song’s lyrics by the 2013 Korean film “Very Ordinary Couple.”

It took the young couple featured in the romantic comedy many rounds of revenge and fighting to finally end their relationship. “But I imagined a quick, clean breakup would make a happy ending for both of them,” he recalled.

“One of the strong points of WINNER is our honest lyrics and subjects that appeal widely to many people,” the band’s rapper Song Min-ho said.


This photo, provided by YG Entertainment, shows K-pop boy band WINNER. (Yonhap)


With a running time of less than three minutes, “Ah Yeah” is the shortest song on the album.

“We boldly removed the intro part and the break to carry our message in a brief, but bold manner,” member Lee Seung-hoon noted.

“It is a short song, but comes with a full, energetic performance,” he said.

In January, the band performed seven concerts in seven North American cities, including Seattle, Los Angeles, Toronto and New York, in their first concert tour of the region since their official debut in 2014.

It was a window through which the band experienced Western concert culture, which is very different from that in Asia, member Kim Jin-woo said.

“It was a moment of healing. I was refreshed and inspired by the concerts myself, while it was I who had to refresh and inspire (the fans). I am really eager to go back,” he noted.

Including “WE,” WINNER plans to issue as many as three albums this year, Kang, the band’s prolific music producer, said.

Kang has produced his own solo album and is looking for the right time to unveil it to the music scene.

“I am not sure whether it would be possible to release it this year because this year is already full with commitments for WINNER. But I strongly hope we can.”

Song said the band also wants to expand its repertoire to diverse genres.

“So far, WINNER has done songs that have tropical, upbeat sounds, but going forward, we seek to encompass a variety of different music genres,” he said. (By Park Boram /  Yonhap)

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