Formed in 2015, K-pop boy band PENTAGON is arguably one of South Korea's most popular acts — even a dating scandal couldn't derail their popularity.
But, first things first: The nine-member band consists of Jinho, Hui, Hongseok, Shinwon, Yeo One, Yan An, Yuto, Kino and Wooseok, who were created through Mnet's reality TV show, Pentagon Maker. Mnet is the brains behind some of South Korea's most enthralling K-pop band creation programs, their most well-known being the Produce 101 franchise.
Originally a 10-member squad, the group was rocked with scandal after member E'Dawn publicly left the group and Cube Entertainment after it was revealed that he was dating fellow K-pop artist HyunA for two years. Previously, E'Dawn, HyunA and fellow PENTAGON member Hui were in the same co-ed group, Triple H, in 2017.
The group then made their comeback this past July with their EP Sum(me:r) to a warm reception. The reason for its popularity? "We think that we are able to showcase more unique points in this album," band member Jinho explained.
Currently on their world tour, the group stopped by Singapore for HallyuPopFest and talked to E! Asia about their creative process, their music inspirations at the moment, and what fans can expect from their PRISM concert.
Collaboration is key when it comes to creating music, according to the boys of PENTAGON, especially in their latest album.
"First, we, we talk [to] each other about the album concept and we try to make something new — what we didn't do before in our albums," Kino told us. "So, we tried rock…"
Picking up from Kino's sentence, Hongseok added, "Before, we didn't try any rock genre, but in this album, we actually tried. Kino actually composed it and he's trying to talk about the kind of stuff that we keep trying to do; challenge stuff that we've never done before in music."
The collaboration process sparked off from different points for the members, but the diversity in inspiration really helped them to form a unique proposition for their music.
"We talk to each other a lot, like what kind of genre would we do this time?" Hongseok said. "For example, Hui sometimes catches a topic from what he sees, what he gets to listen; and Kino reads a lot of books, so he gets to be inspired from a chapter [in the book] or a character inside, or a movie."
As for their music inspirations, Wooseok admitted to a surprising source.
"I'm obsessed with [rock] bands currently," the K-pop idol said. "There is a band called Red Hot Chilli Peppers. I listen to their songs a lot, and I like to watch their live performances at night. I feel like I can relate to their experiences."
Serendipitously, Singapore is the last stop on the boy band's PRISM world tour, and they will be back in town on 2 November to end things with a bang.
"Usually the last stop is the most fun one!" Jinho said with a laugh. "And [Singapore] is the last stop on the world tour, so we are going to work really hard on it."
Watch the full interview above.