INCHEON, SOUTH KOREA - March 04: Nayeon of TWICE is seen leaving Incheon International Airport on Ma...
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Twice's Nayeon Really Wants You To Know That Her New Record Is Mature

The 28-year-old idol uses the descriptor in a two new interviews for Na.

by Michelle Santiago Cortés

South Korean singer Nayeon’s second solo album Na is a steamier, sexier departure from her sunny solo debut Im Nayeon — and now, the 28-year-old idol has confirmed that she is indeed exploring a more grown-up sound.

In a new interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Nayeon explains that she wanted to show a more “mature” and “stronger and bolder” artistry with this new release, “the side of me that I didn’t get to as a member of Twice and in my first album.” In another conversation with Rolling Stone, she emphasizes that Na “definitely has a more mature vibe to it,” adding that she wants this record to be remembered as “a cool one” that will also go down as “a reflection of my growth” and a “new side of me.”

Looking at Na, that evolution builds beginning with the lead single “ABCD,” or the perfect example of a late-90’s going-out tune. Meanwhile, “Heaven (Feat. Sam Kim)” and “Butterflies” are heavier with R&B influences that contrast with the singer’s poppy vocals. The result: a K-pop hybrid where Stacie Orrico meets Jazmine Sullivan.

This turn away from the sugary-sweet sound that made Nayeon so infectious in the first place parallels the gradual changes Twice has also been undergoing. Since their 2015 debut, the group has grown its fandom with cutesy songs like “TT” and “Likey,” but has since morphed into a darker, sexier, and more diverse iteration with international successes like “I CAN’T STOP ME” and “CRY FOR ME.” As the nine members enter their late 20s, it only makes sense that their music also expands to challenge them creatively.