Monsta X, a seven member ‘idol’ group from Korea was formed through a survival type reality show called No Mercy back in 2015. The show was intense and dramatic as it whittled away the contestants until only the best remained. While I’m not particularly a fan of this kind of show, as I get caught up in all the emotions, I will admit that the whole experience bonds the resulting members together like nothing else. The way they interact and enjoy each other’s company now looks like ‘family’. They tease, help, support, and love each other as brothers would.
Monsta X has had numerous hit songs and they are well known for their charismatic and powerful dance moves. They also take part in the creation process as various members have produced, choreographed, written, and composed for their multiple albums.
They began their 3rd World Tout back in April in Seoul and followed that up with shows in Asia, Europe, and Australia. They then have stops in North and South America before concluding their tour in August. Monsta X favored Texas with two stops, with one in Dallas and then the second in Houston and I was lucky to be able to go to both. Texas is big, bigger than many countries, ( it is over 1,300 kilometers north to south and east to west ) so having 2 shows out of their 18 city tour in one state was not all that odd of a decision. But it wasn’t all Texans in the audience, fans had flown and driven from all over the US as well as from other countries.
The Dallas show was their first US stop and the tension was high. I did feel they were a little stiff and nervous as the show began, although that was hard to discern as they performed some of their most popular songs to start off the evening. I don’t necessarily have a bias within the group as I feel they all have their strengths so I just let my eyes wander to see who they were drawn to. This perhaps enabled me to spot some of the cute interactions that happened between members while the spotlight focused on another member. Often it is these small moments of closeness, teasing or support that draw me to feel more towards the group and Monsta X really showed their love and support for each other throughout both shows.
They were perhaps more relaxed and were teasing each other more at the Houston stop than at the Dallas one. This is one reason to go to more than one show. Although the set list may be the same the actual experience is different each time you see them. They performed all their hit songs and started both evenings with powerful and amazing performances of Shootout, Hero, and Trespass. This really got the audience fired-up and they stayed that way the whole evening. The energy within the venues was electric. ( I secretly think Kpop performers like coming to Texas because of the unbridled, very loud and extremely enthusiastic responses from the fans.)
Each of the seven members, Shownu, Wonho, Minhyuk, Kihyun, Hyungwon, I.M, and Jooheon who now wishes to be called Joohoney are all extremely talented. Their individual skills were showcased during the evening in performances involved just two or three of them at a time. The incredibly evocative performance of Mirror by Shownu and Wonho showed off their contemporary dance skills as well as the strength of their bodies. The drum solo from Joohoney and the rap duet by him and I.M. were bold, and a little brash and supremely confident. They totally owned the stage. They went from intense performances to playing a game of flip the bottle and being totally cute in a blink of an eye. You could tell they were really enjoying themselves.
Minhyuk, Kihyun and Hyungwon somewhat took me by surprise with their adult rated performance of Myself. Their performance was sensual, bold and charismatic, drawing the audience into their world. It was a wonderfully executed routine with just the right amount of dynamism and sex appeal.
Which was totally different vibe from when they were dressed as schoolboys!
Sometimes the breaks between sets can be kinda a letdown but a couple of my favorite parts actually took place when Monsta X were off stage taking a break and doing a change of outfits. They had filmed two short stories for us to view on the venue’s big screens while we waited. The first was loosely based around the theme of a ‘Montube’ channel with each member giving advice and tutorials to Monbebe’s (their fandom’s name). For example Wonho was a fitness instructor, Hyungwon gave fashion advice, and Minhyuk a beauty consultant. Each part was cute and sweet with the underlying message that we should take care of ourselves and that Monsta X loves us. The video also had funny moments and times when they teased us with innuendo and suggestive wording.
The second video was much deeper and darker with the theme being ‘The Seven Deadly Sins’. This one was melodramatic and full of angst that drew the audience in and then played with our feelings. I.M was Envy, Hyungwon pride, Kihyun loneliness, Minhyuk agony, Joohoney greed, Wonho sloth, and Shownu wrath. Each mini story tugged at our emotions and the audience reacted with audible sounds from screams, to almost hysterical laughter. I could hear people shouting out messaged of sympathy and concern, including one person who was so moved by Minhyuk’s agony that she shouted out, “I’ll kill the bitch.” Fortunately the video didn’t end on a low note, but instead showed how each of the members were made stronger through the love and acceptance of their group mates and an understanding that they themselves were responsible for the ‘prison’ they were in. ( Deep.)
The evening was thoroughly enjoyable with the guys mixing up the night with sweet and cute moments followed by sexy and adult ones. The list of songs included all their hits as well as lesser known ones and I think they sang well over 20 songs. They had breaks where they just talked with us the audience and told us what was in their hearts. They truly are a caring group of young men, and appreciate the love of their fandom.
They put every once of energy into their performances and I want to say how much we all enjoyed the show. The passion and joy we saw as they sang, rapped and danced with skill and precision was inspiring, while the love shared between them and their fans was meaningful and touched all our hearts.
Monsta X thank you for being you, and I wish you happiness along with a long and successful career.
Thank you to my two friends Laura and Melanie who were at both concerts with me. While I often go to concerts by myself, it is always more fun with friends.
Have a great day everyone.
Please do not copy or use without permission and accreditation. All photo credits to Debora Marzec.
You may also enjoy 2018 Monsta X 2nd World Tour ‘The Connect” in Houston and Monsta X Beautiful In The USA: Chicago.