“Favorite (Vampire)” by NCT 127
During this year alone we’ve come across a number of songs, including Ed Sheeran’s “Bad Habits” and Bebe Rexha’s “Sacrifice“, whose lyrics or in those cases imagery is associated with vampirism. And it seems that quite a few K-poppers are also keen on utilizing said concept. But at the end of the day, the way different acts flip this motif is based on their own respective artistry.
The title, as well as the way the word “favorite” is utilized in this song, implies that the “vampire” being referred to is the addressee. And this is one K-pop tune that we can solidly conclude is romantic in nature. So put more simply, the vocalist is calling his girlfriend a vampire.
And accordingly he uses a number of metaphors to point to that idea, even though it would appear that the word “vampire” is never actually used in the lyrics.
But of course, having more or less been treated to vampire-related media our entire lives, we all know what can happen when you fall in love with such an entity. You may be eventually bitten, becoming a vampire yourself. And such is apparently what the vocalist is experiencing, an idea that is buttressed by the imagery featured in this song’s music video.
So on one hand, we may have lyrics like the singer putting forth that the addressee has ‘come to him like a fever to destroy him’, which is in fact an off-the-cuff analogy to point to the notion of being in love. And there is plenty of other such lyricism. One includes the vocalist expressing a willingness to ‘take a bite of that innocent poison and swallow it’ and “hurt even more relentlessly”. He is willing to do all this in the name of locking down the addressee.
A Toxic Lover
But taking a more adult approach to the matter, we know that the NCT 127 gang aren’t literally talking about vampires. We shall therefore try to interpret this song more intelligently. And in doing so, it is theoretically possible that what Doyoung and the boys are actually speaking to is something like being smitten by a toxic lover.
This addressee they’re singing about, obviously possesses some dangerous characteristics. And being her sweetheart would entail that some of these attributes will rub off on the vocalist, thus putting him at danger also. But he likes it. Or more to the point, he’s willing to accept such in the name of being with said addressee.
The Overall Thesis Sentiment of “Favorite (Vampire)”
So as far as a thesis sentiment goes, symbolically speaking it’s as the message of this piece is ‘I’m in love with a vampire, but I don’t care.’ In other words, the singer’s affection for the addressee overrides his concern of her, shall we say destructive characteristics.
“Favorite (Vampire)”, NCT 127 and Sticker
SM Entertainment released this track on 25 October 2021. It is derived from NCT 127’s album Sticker. Well more officially, it is the lead single of an undertaking entitled Favorite, which is a repackaged version of Sticker.
K-pop bands are such that they’re often compelled to issue projects in different languages. So Sticker is actually their third Korean studio album though fourth overall, as NCT 127 also came out with a Japanese LP, Awaken, in 2019.
NCT 127 is a subgroup of a larger boy band known more simply as NCT (aka Neo Culture Technology). In its entirety, NCT currently consists of 23 members. Meanwhile NCT 127 is made up of 10 of those individuals. As of the writing of this post, the members’ ages range from 27 (Taeil) to 21 years old (Haechan).
And those who fall in between are:
- Johnny (26)
- Taeyong (26)
- Yuta (26)
- Doyoung (25)
- Jaehyun (24)
- Winwin (24)
- Jungwoo (23)
- Mark (22)
Darkchild and Kenzie
The two producers of this track are Rodney Jerkins and Kenzie. The former is better known to Western audiences as Darkchild. He is one of the premiere turn-of-the-century African-American behind-the-scenes’ musicians.
And Kenzie is actually a female artist who is employed by SM Entertainment. Accordingly, she has worked with some of the biggest K-poppers in the game.
The two aforementioned musicians are also credited as writers of “Favorite (Vampire)”, alongside Chikk.