(x)clusive!: Spending a Really Really Special Night with Winner
South Korean idol group Winner held their long-awaited solo concert in Singapore on 3 November, as one of their few stops of their Everywhere tour. This tour marks the group’s first solo concert outside of Korea and Japan, so needless to say, expectations were sky high for the quartet. Thankfully, Winner more than delivered. Opening the night with debut track ‘Empty’, Winner powered through track after track as a group and individually, fully showcasing their unique colors and diverse strengths.
Mino, well-known as a rapper with a healthy amount of underground clout, eschewed hard-hitting verses to ooze sensuality in ‘Body’ and ‘Turn off the lights’, to the delight of the fans. Following the strong first showing was Jinwoo with a heartfelt performance of G-Dragon’s ‘Untitled’, looking very much like an ethereal prince from a fantasy kingdom.
Group leader Seungyoon came next, showcasing his vocal prowess by first serenading fans with an acapella rendition of ‘It Rains’, followed by a completely instrumental-less version of Troye Sivan’s ‘Youth’. It was a treat for Inner Circles (or Singer Circles as they spontaneously coined) in attendance, as it was the first time he was performing the song. Although he’d fumbled some of the lyrics due to nerves, he fully acquitted himself after that while rocking out to ‘Instinctively’. Wielding his guitar like it’s an extension of his body, he brought the house down with the powerhouse vocals he’s been known for since competing in Superstar K2.
Seungyoon would have been a tough act to follow for most, but not for Seunghoon, who lit up the stage with an energetic set next. ‘Serenade’ and ‘Ringa Linga’ were meant to do one thing—show off his talent and skill in dance—which they did extremely well. The dance break at the end of ‘Ringa Linga’ definitely demonstrates why the rest of Winner defers to him when it comes to dance. Of course, that it was a great performance all in all goes unsaid.
All of Winner are strong performers in their own right, but put the four of them together and that’s when magic happens. Tracks like ‘Everyday’, ‘Really Really’, ‘Island’, ‘Love Me Love Me’ are Winner at their best, filled with catchy refrains and foot-tapping beats reminiscent of the tropical house genre and perfect for the warm weather in Singapore. There’s an understatedness to Winner that deceptively hides how good they are at what they do, whether it’s writing hooks that stay in your head for days, or spinning stories with choreography that’s never over the top. Yet it would be presumptuous to write Winner off as a group that only does summer bops. They brought out their sentimental side in an intimate set of mellow tunes like ‘For’, ‘Raining’, and ‘Movie Star’, which had the fans enthusiastically singing along.
Performance aside, Winner are also excellent entertainers. Credit goes especially to Seungyoon, who took on emceeing duties for the night. The entire show was conducted in English, which was no easy feat, and certainly shows the dedication and thoughtfulness of Winner while preparing for the show.
During breaks between the sets, they chatted about what they’ve been doing since arriving in Singapore, which included trying out our world-famous chili crab (Seungyoon prefers butter crabs) and visiting the Singapore Flyer. Merely visiting instead of riding it, because it had shut down by the time they got there, but at least they got to take some photos with it. Definitely check out said photo on Seungyoon’s Instagram account!
The way we see it, having unfinished business just means Winner will have to return to the Lion City, and as they revealed, hopefully soon and armed with their new album. In the meantime, Inner Circles will get to relive their beautiful memories of a truly outstanding show!
This concert is brought to you by UnUsUaL Entertainment.
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