More or less, you know what to expect from your favorite boy band: Backstreet Boys give us straight-forward bubblegum; One Direction embraces '80s-tinged, rock-pop hooks; and you can count on incredible choreography no matter what genre TVXQ! try to conquer. On the K-pop scene, EXO is now the male group to beat, currently holding the record for highest-charting album by Korean boy bands on the Billboard 200. Their second full-length album Exodus -- following 2013's XOXO, which broke records in Korea -- is an ambitious record that shows the group isn't ready to be pinned down just yet.
EXO could have presented themselves as a lovelorn boy band like most do, but instead the 10-member oufit are willing to not only get romantic, but also dark, sensual and aggressive -- looks boy bands typically stay away from -- on its best tracks.
Despite the ambition, several tracks feel like they need an extra oomph and fall victim to mediocricy than impression making or solidifying any type of identity. For all of Exodus' hooks, one would think they would stick with the listener better.