|Weki Meki members pose for a 'locked' version of their characters, meaning they are 'locked' inside "good girl" personalities. Courtesy of Fantagio Corp.|
By Jung Hae-myoung
A long queue of fans were spotted at the press showcase for the release of Weki Meki's second album "Lock End LOL" at Hannam-dong, Seoul, Tuesday.
Weki Meki, a girl group with two members from the audition program "Produce 101," released the new album with the lead single "Picky Picky," a song with a fast beat, strong base and addictive hook. Playing with the term "rock 'n' roll," the group tries to convey the idea of girls "locked" at school but rebelling after school.
The timing of the album release was awkward as the CEO of their agency Fantagio Corporation was arrested in China on suspicion of fraud.
For this album, the eight members of Weki Meki each play different archetypes of female high school students, ranging from teenage rock star to school president.
At the showcase, members presented the new single "Picky Picky," wearing bright neon clothes and dyed blonde or orange hair. This was different from the group's previous "girl crush" concept.
"The school crush concept is developed from the group's original concept as teen crush, and focused more on the music video's narrative context happening in high school," said Lua, sub-vocalist of Weki Meki.
|Weki Meki members pose for the 'LOL' version of themselves, showing each member's characters liberated from their locked selves at school. The photo concept is members of an after-school band. Courtesy of Fantagio Corp.|
Group members voted Lucy, the youngest of the group, as the most suitable for this album concept.
"Lucy and I are the only two members who go to high school," Rina said. "Since the album concept is about high school crushes, I thought actual high school students would fit the concept well."
Despite their effort, the album received mixed responses from listeners.
While some said "every song on the album could be a single," others said the songs are "quite disappointing compared to its second mini-album La La La."
Choi You-jeong and Kim Do-yeon, who were previously members of the temporary girl group I.O.I, could not avoid rumors about a potential reunion of that group.
"Nothing is confirmed," Choi said, emphasizing she wants to focus on working as a member of Weki Meki.
I.O.I was made up of finalists from the first season of "Produce 101," a music audition program where 101 trainees compete to become the last 11 members.
With Jeon So-mi at the center, Choi You-jeong and Kim Do-yeon were the most popular members of the group. I.O.I disbanded in 2017 a year and eight months after it was formed as a project group.
Weki Meki's album release was also made during a difficult situation within the agency, as Fantagio Corporation CEO Wei Jie was arrested recently by China's public security bureau.
Regarding the CEO's arrest for illegal financing and fraud, Ji Su-yeon, the leader of the group said "the corporation's situation did not have any impact on Weki Meki's new album."