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Exo released their new album “Don’t Fight The Feeling” on Monday.

Exo are back: K-pop boy band release ‘Don’t Fight The Feeling’ album as Lay, D.O. and Xiumin return

  • Exo’s album went on sale on Monday despite band members Suho and Chen being absent as they fulfil their mandatory military service in South Korea
  • Lay last appeared on the band’s 2018 album ‘Don’t Mess Up My Tempo’ and has since spent the coronavirus pandemic in China
Tamar Hermanin United States

Exo are back, with something old and something new on their latest album, “Don’t Fight the Feeling”. Out on Monday, the mini-album, or EP, dubbed a “special album”, is fronted by a funky ’90s-feeling dance single, also called Don’t Fight the Feeling.

In it, the popular K-pop group reflect on the emotions of moving forward in the face of change and choices, motivating listeners to move forward with them.

The music video for the song also arrived yesterday, revisiting some elements previously featured in the band’s ongoing sci-fi plotline that rears its head often throughout their music and related content.

Lyrically, Don’t Fight the Feeling also refers to “Kwangya”, an integral element of the recently announced SMCU, the creative universe revolving around music label SM Entertainment’s artists.

The album is “special” for several reasons, most notably because it deviates from Exo’s other releases in that not all of the band’s nine members are featured.

The five-track release has only the voices of Baekhyun, Chanyeol, Lay, D.O., Kai, Xiumin, and Sehun, while Suho and Chen are absent, fulfilling South Korea’s mandatory military draft.

The release marks the return of Lay, also known as Zhang Yixing, who is featured on the album and appears in the music video for Don’t Fight the Feeling.

The star, who is prominent in China’s entertainment world, hasn’t been featured in the band’s work since 2018’s “Don’t Mess Up My Tempo”. As he’s spent the coronavirus pandemic in China, it appears he filmed and recorded his content remotely from the rest of the Seoul-based band.

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Along with it being Lay’s first appearance in some time, “Don’t Fight the Feeling” also marks the return of D.O. and Xiumin, who last appeared on the band’s 2018 “Love Shot”, after which they enlisted in South Korea’s armed forces. Since its recording, Baekhyun and Chanyeol have enlisted.

Band members, including ones not featured on the album, have been actively promoting it on their personal social media platforms.

According to SM Entertainment, “Don’t Fight The Feeling” made history for the band, breaking their own record with over 1.22 million pre-orders for the album. The single and album also topped real-time music streaming charts across the world upon its release.

Tying into the album‘s concept, Exo released a special online game for fans to play. EXO-Ship Saga is reminiscent of ’70s and ’80s classics Space Invaders and Galaga, and can currently be played only on mobile devices through a web browser.