Donghun proves time and time again how much of a skilled vocalist he is both in A.C.E and individually. Another facet of his vocal prowess is showcased in duets. His work with Sonnet is gorgeous (you will recall both Shallow and Little Do You Know). But, I particularly enjoy when he pairs up with one of his A.C.E brothers. So, how about another Vocal Magic moment? Oh yes . . . let’s check out the time our two elders (the ’93 liners) paired up to cover d.ear and NCT Jaehyun’s melodic ballad, Try Again.
If you are not familiar with A.C.E you are probably not aware of the fact that rappers Byeongkwan and Wow are as adept at singing as they are at rapping. And I absolutely love that Wow is paired with Donghun in this ballad because I feel that Wow can use more exposure and appreciation as a vocalist because he is quite solid. Don’t get me wrong, Byeongkwan is as equally adept. THIS is what makes A.C.E so very versatile. Vocalists Donghun, Chan and Junhee already provide incredible range and color to the group’s vocals but having the additional vocal capabilities of BK and Wow make them beyond complete on the vocal spectrum. And, provide for quite the variety of duet, trio and sub-unit opportunities such as this one.
The harmonies, the harmonies, the har-mo-nies!! The cover is so well done that I can almost forgive Donghun for pranking Wow on that high five before the start of the song. Why is he like this?! Hehehehe. But back to the song. Try Again is a serene and gentle love song that requires a vocalist to tap into that serene and gentle part of his/her voice. Both d.ear and Jaehyun set the foundation well. The clarity and tone of Wow and d.ear are so similar. To me, it was spot on for Wow to handle the d.ear part of this duet. Because Donghun has so much range, he could have easily settled into either part, but I love that he handled Jaehyun’s in this version because it allowed him to dive into his lower earthier range. That earthy quality is what sets Jaehyun’s vocals apart from all of the other NCT members. It is atmospheric and Donghun captures it well in this cover.
I am just going to say this right now. Whenever I drop a Vocal Magic moment among the posts of this countdown and Donghun is singing in a duet, trio, or with the entirety of A.C.E, I will most assuredly bring up his strong harmonizing game. In fact, all five of them are strong with harmonies because all five of them are strong vocalists. But Donghun drops into a harmony with such subtle ease. It is as if he is already hearing the song with the harmonies present whether they are supposed to be there or not. I am convinced musicians, be they vocalists or instrumentalists hear music on an entirely different level than us average non-musician listeners. That’s what makes them so special.
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