On June 7, 2007, FTISLAND (also stylized F.T. Island) became the first ever K-pop idol band. Ten years later, the quintet has had a long-lasting career and saw major successes in Korea and Japan. To commemorate the milestone, the quintet released the 13-track Over 10 Years on Wednesday, a decade to the day of the release of their first album, Cheerful Sensibility.
Reflecting its title, Over 10 Years revisits the sounds explored by FTISLAND over their lengthy career, including an updated version of their debut single “Love Sick,” which they remade as a duet between lead singer Lee Hongki and Kim Na Young.
The tracks on the anniversary album flit through the group’s sonic history, featuring everything from rock ballads like “Imagine You” and “The Wood” to the more upbeat pop rock vibe of the likes of “No Better Days” and “What U Want,” each of which would likely be single-material on a less sentimental album.
Meanwhile, the band delivers a heavier rock sound on “Parade” and “Voice,” reflecting the style of music that FTISLAND’s exhibited on recent albums like 2016’s Where’s The Truth?, which peaked at No. 5 on the World Albums chart, and April’s Japanese release, United Shadows. For a feel-good party vibe, the band also included “Champagne” on the album, a falsetto-fueled summer jam.
The single “Wind” blends FTISLAND’s miscellany of styles, starting as the sort of soft, piano and strings dominated pop-rock style that they first gained prominence for in the late 2000s and before changing things up midway to come in with a powerful, full-band for an impactful finale.
The first-ever K-pop group to break with the dance-focused idol groups typical of K-pop, FTISLAND paved the way for other acts including CNBLUE, AOA, and DAY6 to explore similarly divergent paths in the industry. After conquering Korea with hits including “Love Sick” and “Love Love Love,” FTISLAND became the first foreign male act to top Japan’s Oricon weekly chart in 2011, a nod to their popularity in the second-largest music market in the world.
The band is one of several K-pop acts to recently hit the ten-year mark in a competitive industry that rarely sees groups survive to the milestone, joining the likes of BIGBANG, Super Junior, Brown Eyed Girls, and Shinhwa.
Watch the music video for “Wind” here: