“I don’t really care that it’s not mainstream, it’s just me.”
“The quiet one”, “The introverted guy” were the titles attached to the stage name ‘I.M’ of Im Changkyun, MONSTA X’s lead rapper, vocalist and dancer. Little did everyone know that he was waiting for just the right moment to let himself unbridled and exhibit all his sides, the dark and the bright, for his MONBEBEs and the world to see!
The result was an album that shot up to #1 music charts worldwide with its 5 songs, each bolder and surreal than the other, telling stories of the artist, I.M, and the individual, Im Changkyun in their entirety.
I.M – DUALITY
🔥#1 in 15 COUNTRIES 🔥
iTunes (15x #1):
#1 Saudi Arabia
#1 Vietnam@OfficialMonstaX #IM_DUALITY pic.twitter.com/x5lF5LxfzT
— Monsta X Goes Global (@MXGoesGlobal) February 19, 2021
On 19th February, the day of the album release, his EP ‘Duality’ topped iTunes India’s Album Charts. Indian MONBEBEs were hard at work and in no time the EP hit #1 on iTunes India and stayed there for a long time before moving to #2, still sitting there proudly.
“Why ‘Duality’?”, I.M was asked in an interview. He answered, he had landed on the album name ‘Duality’ to reflect his many sides, ‘like a happy me, a sad me, a depressed me, a hype me’. The album hence carries both slow and fast-paced tracks, and all share a hazy, chill, high-toned, and introspective trap beat, relaying the complexity of his emotions.
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The music video for “GOD DAMN”, the title track with a bold and sensual theme, shook the Internet and laid out the theme for the EP.
“‘God Damn’ means a lot to me. The whole album is my baby and I made it, but ‘God Damn’, the lyrics describe me a lot. I feel like if you are with somebody and you feel like you’re the real you, I felt ‘God Damn’ was like that.”
-I.M to Metro
Much of the album sticks to the authenticity of the self-producer and composer, but he doesn’t let the solo freedom go waste. Infusing never-before rap styles and concepts, he does justice to an interview quote:
“It is a totally different vibe from MONSTA X. If I’m working on my team album, I’m trying to match all the members’ personal colour. I try to match the view of the public. You can’t deny that. So I’m trying to balance all of this stuff. ‘But when I’m working on my own I can concentrate on myself, that’s the biggest difference.”
I.M is exploring his emotional passage of sorts, and thankfully, he recorded the process in these 5 songs. His take on sadness, happiness, sensuality, and all the qualities that make a human is what gives this album the depth of body to which millions, including the population of a diverse nation such as that of India, can relate to. It’s pure, it’s human.