[INTERVIEW] VIXX is back on the 'Continuum' with new album over 4 years later

Boy band VIXX back with its new EP ″Continuum″ [JELLYFISH ENTERTAINMENT]

Superhero idols and extra-terrestrial beings are not so novel these days in the so-called fifth-generation K-pop scene. There was a time when weaving a fictional background into artists’ stage personas was considered weird, but one boy band that did it anyway: That boy band was VIXX.

Having debuted in 2012, around the time when some of the biggest names in K-pop were born, VIXX survived the toughest peer competition by going out on a limb and trying something that not many other bands did and venturing into the world of fiction on stage.

From superheroes and game characters to vampires, Jekyll and Hyde and voodoo dolls, members of VIXX readily turned themselves into any fictional being to fit the story of their new music, earning themselves the nicknames “concept-dol,” “fantasy-dol” and even “horror-dol” — a play on words from the K-pop reference to artists as idols.

The band is now back to do what it does best with its fifth EP “Continuum,” set for release today at 6 p.m.

“It’s our first album in four years and two months as VIXX, which does come with a bit of pressure because we haven’t done so in such a long time,” Leo said in response to a question by the Korea JoongAng Daily in a press interview on Nov. 16.

Boy band VIXX back with its new EP ″Continuum″ [JELLYFISH ENTERTAINMENT]

“But I also believe that there is nothing more satisfying or fulfilling for a singer than to be able to meet with fans on stage and perform for them. So we’ve been practicing with a happy heart.”

The album follows the group's last digital single “Parallel,” which was released in September 2019, before members parted ways and signed with different agencies to pursue solo endeavors.

N, the leader of the group, was unable to participate due to his personal appointments, and former members Hongbin and Ravi left the band in 2020 and 2023, leaving only members Leo, Hyuk and Ken for the newest release.

“The fact that it’s just the three of us was also a concern for us, because there are things that we’ve achieved with the name VIXX, and there's a sense of responsibility that comes with it,” Leo said. “But I think in a way, we were able to come back with high quality content and performance because of that pressure. We are worried, but we’re also confident that this may be our best album yet.”

“Continuum,” as is evident in the title, is a continuation of the fiction-meets-pop vibe for which the band had been famed. Five tracks are included in the album, starting with mid-tempo R&B lead track “Amnesia” followed by the “dark and mysterious” future bass track “Chemical,” and “Lilac,” “Savage” and “If You Come Tonight.”

Boy band VIXX back with its new EP ″Continuum″ [JELLYFISH ENTERTAINMENT]

For “Amnesia,” the utmost priority went into putting on a unique performance that’s iconic of the VIXX vibe, according to the members.

“Our voice is our own and something that only VIXX can pull off,” Ken said. “We can give a very cinematic feel to our songs, and I think that’s the ‘VIXXness’ of our songs.”

Having spent four years apart and then coming back together has made them better as artists, upping the overall quality of the whole album, members said.

“We didn’t particularly aim to emphasize that we had grown over the years, but the fact that we spent our own time growing in our own ways just showed through,” Leo said.

“In a way, we all have our own aspirations and ambitions to learn and grow into a bigger person, which has made us better members of this group, too. We’ve become more confident as both singers and also colleagues.”

The decision to go ahead without N did not come easy, but members agreed that they could not postpone the schedule any more than this year. N, whose real name is Cha Hak-yeon, has been busy pursuing his acting career in local drama series.

Boy band VIXX back with its new EP ″Continuum″ [JELLYFISH ENTERTAINMENT]

“We started discussing the album in April and Hak-yeon already had his schedule set by then,” Leo said.

“He really wanted to take part, but he couldn’t because there were some things that were realistically difficult. We know that he wanted to be with us deep in his heart, and we wanted to make it work for all of us, but we figured that four years and two months was long enough. Had we taken any longer, then we would be letting the fans down.”

In fact, having spent almost 12 years together as one group has led them to think of each other as brothers.

“We realized that we had to become bigger persons in order to protect the things we love, like VIXX,” Hyuk said. “But the fact that we’re here together, and with the fans, is reason enough for us to go on and spend our time passionately.”

VIXX will hold solo concerts on Dec. 9 and 10 at the Jangchung Arena in Jung District, central Seoul. The concert, titled “VIXX Live Fantasia ‘Continuum’,” will be its first concert in four years, since its last solo concert in September 2019.