After EXO performed in Malaysia at the epic MTV Asia World Stage concert [our recap here], they conducted a short but sweet group interview. Soompi was among the very few media outlets invited to participate, so of course we went to the luxurious Malaysia Sunway Resort Hotel and Spa to record EXO’s every word and action!
At 3 PM sharp, the boys filed into the conference room and greeted everyone with their signature hand signal: “We are one, we are EXO!” Looking handsome in matching teal school uniform blazers, the members seemed happy and energetic, even though they had just finished a demanding performance the night before. They answered our questions politely and thoughtfully, with each sentence reflecting the years of discipline it took to become the success they are today.
First, Suho spoke up for the group when told that XOXO became the first record in twelve years to sell over 700,000 copies (the last being Kim Gun Mo’s seventh album in 2001). “We are happy to have this kind of success, even in Korea, China, and many places. When next time we comeback, we will try to get a better quality performance and album.” But when asked how the boys had celebrated the 700,000 sales, they admitted (unsurprisingly) that they hadn’t had time yet and would be sure to celebrate soon.
As we all know, EXO debuted in 2012 as two separate units, EXO-K and EXO-M, but they united as one for their first full album with “Wolf” and “Growl.” Kris admitted that there had been some issues transitioning to a large group, but there were some advantages as well. “Twelve members is quite a large amount, so it was hard to get organized at the beginning. But this time we had more time to make things perfect. And there’s a good side to it too, because together with all twelve members, we will be more powerful!” Baekhyun added, “Now we can perform more varieties, performances as well. We can try more things to give the fans a better performance.”
But don’t look for EXO to completely discontinue the split concept. When asked what their selling point was, what set them apart from other idol groups, Chanyeol answered, “We are divided as EXO-K and EXO-M, and it’s something really special because we are promoting in Korean and Chinese. This captures a lot of audiences, so this is our biggest advantage.”
Korean and Chinese, yes… but how about English? “We definitely want to try for an English album,” Baekhyun said. Look out, world! And although they may want to collaborate with international artists, the members were coy when naming who they might like to work with, saying only, “We hope to work with some international artists because it will be an experience.”
Next, Chen talked about his pairing with Baekhyun for the music competition variety show “Immortal Song,” and he seemed to frame his thoughts around performing without the entire group. “Apart from our usual twelve members’ performance, this time we came out, the two of us, in like a subunit, so sometimes we felt like we miss other members. But it’s a new experience, and we all appreciated it.”
Finally, Suho spoke up again to thank the audience. “Thank you for the support from our fans. We will come back with something greater and even better than ‘Wolf’ and ‘Growl.’”
Thus ended the interview — we told you it was short but sweet! The boys said, “We are one! Thank you!” and exited the room to pose for a group photo, shown below.
Soompi Reporter: Chin Leong
Photo credit: Rizki-Maulana