His voice is captivating. He produces a sound that bleeds emotions of tainted love. It runs across fingertips, leaving a soothing feeling that seeps into our bodies. He is Dean, a self-composing Korean artist. In 130 Mood: TRBL, Dean tells of fragmented love through his poetic lyrics and sultry vocals. Whether it's a case of one-sided love or a corrupted relationship, the music depicts a deep jolt of emotions that plunges into our souls.
On March 24 of 2016, Dean began his solo artist career with the release of his first K-R&B mini album, 130 Mood: TRBL. Dean is a composer, singer, and songwriter. In the past, he produced and composed for other Korean artists such as VIXX, EXO, and Heize. Dean also collaborated with Crush, Zico, Dok2, Suran, and Eric Bellinger. He can produce and sing intriguingly, which assures that Dean is a talented artist full of promise.
130 Mood: TRBL depicts the bottled up feelings that occur because of love. “Half Moon,” “What 2 Do,” and “21” are songs in the album that give off vibes of loneliness and disparity. Dean expresses a longing feeling in “Half Moon,” using poetic lyrics such as “In the place where you used to be, I can see the night sky. That half-full moon looks just like me right now.” Similarly, “What 2 Do” describes a desperate feeling to stay in a hopeless and shattered relationship. In his rich, captivating voice, Dean sings about a one-sided relationship between a younger man and an older woman in “21.” All three songs reveal the harsh reality of love and how it can truly make the heart throb in pain.
Tainted relationships often lead to breakups and intoxication. A strong reliance on alcohol, which is used as an anchor to forget about a girlfriend of the past, is mentioned in “Pour Up.” The strong repetition of the words “Drink, smoke, drink, smoke, drink, smoke. Pour up” immediately sets a dark mood at the beginning of the song. A relationship entangled with betrayal and danger is depicted in “Bonnie & Clyde.” Just like “Pour Up,” a voice at the beginning of the song speaks, “We’re sorry, your call cannot be completed as dialed. Please check the numbers and dial again.” Both songs clearly scream the words twisted and wild, but “I Love It” is the complete opposite. The song gives off a carefree feeling of happiness and bliss in a single moment. It definitely contrasts “Pour Up” and “Bonnie and Clyde” with an uplifting and carefree mood.
The outro of 130 Mood: TRBL is “And You?,” but ironically, it is the first song of the album. “And You?” shows the progression of how someone has moved on from their ex. “But actually, I don't care. I can't really remember you.” Dean uses his strong voice to express the erratic feelings associated in the song. His voice, at some point in “And You?,” resembles a crashing tidal wave, but toward the end, it ebbs out into soft droplets. The instrumentals compliment Dean’s voice and the sudden shift in the song.
Dean’s tracklist clearly expresses a deep meaning behind his encaptivating vocals. Each song highlights his different talents. His velvety smooth voice travels through the ears and wraps around the curves of the body. Dean emits emotion effortlessly throughout the whole album. 130 Mood: TRBL will definitely leave the heart aching from a new perception of love.