When I started listening to Civilization by The Groo, I thought I was listening to an album released in the United States. The first comparison I got was old Panic at the Disco! with the use of synth over the instrumentals. The second was that the vocals were in English. They fit “Shadow Painter” perfectly hitting high notes and staying melodic across each verse.
Then the second song, “Machines,” continued that trend with a very dance rock style. “Machines” chorus is so familiar, but I couldn’t find the comparable US band. Overall Civilization doesn’t sound like it’s from a Korean band, but a band that originated overseas. The only issue with Civilization is that the album is uneven. It goes from really amazing dance rock songs to these slower indie rock songs that appear between the faster songs which slow down the flow. “Tree in the Middle of a Forest” is an example of that. It’s a great song, but after two really high energy songs it brings the release to a strong stop.
“Love Does” follows a melodic rock arrangement giving vocalist Jin Hyon a way to expand his vocals. His voice fits both styles perfectly, but I’m not sure what the core sound of The Groo actually is. “Inheritance” sounds like a British rock song that combines the two styles of the band and the use of synth adds a slightly sinister tone. Essentially Civilization is two EPs combined together, presenting two styles and jumbles them together.
I think The Groo’s Civilization is easily an album that can speak to international audiences. The high energy songs are a lot more fun than the more melodic songs and the song order doesn’t have a cohesive flow which makes it difficult to really get into the music all the way. I do like Civilization a lot, but it’s distinct styles need a better transition.