COREMAGAZINE has always been known to me through its guitarist, Junghun. He’s been the constant since I saw them years ago in Seoul. The band has gone through different iterations over the years since its start with Peep in 2012. At that time, COREMAGAZINE was big into synth-rock and highly melodic male vocals. It changed on 2016’s Nap which was a bit like a closing chapter for the band.
Now, titbit, is basically what I consider a reboot of the band. Junghun remains a constant and the core music foundation pulls from the synth-rock origins, but the EP feels fresh and and alive. It’s enjoying its moment of existence rather than trying to make a huge statement. There are some noticeable signs of change. The band’s name is simplified into all caps, the vocals are split with female vocals taking a bigger presence. I think that’s one of the best changes. The vocals give COREMAGAZINE a different sound and audio attack.
The instrumentations also feel lighter than before. There’s less oppressive audio atmosphere meaning not every note and verse is filled with some kind of instrumental highlight or feature. “It’s On” is generally a simple 4/4 song with the percussion pushing the beat with a bass drum hit on every quarter note. The guitar and bass follow suit with eighth notes and the vocals effortless glide over each verse. “It’s On” is an easy song to get into and as the start of titbit, it will attract a lot of ears.
I think the strength of COREMAGAZINE’s reemergence is a maturation of Junghun. Also MIN GYU‘s synths are easily featured without drowning out the other instruments. “Tracy” is where synths get a big feature and as the single, this is probably the first song many people might hear from COREMAGAZINE. Even though the band has been around for many years and live performances were enjoyable, I think the music wasn’t able to stick.
titbit speaks to a new generation, combined with a polished and evolved sound, COREMAGAZINE reset and reemerged with one of the best EPs of 2020. Even with just four songs, titbit presents a lot of different perspectives of the band’s music and opens the path to different options and where the music could go with the hopefully next release.