Stray Kids Makes a VENOMous Splash in the K-Pop Industry With “Oddinary”

The group’s latest product channels the mysterious Marvel character to highlight that which makes each of us odd.

PHOTO COURTESY / YouTube Stray Kids

The side we don’t show on a daily basis. That which makes us odd. Stray Kids have incorporated these themes and more into their latest release “Oddinary,” which is the group’s seventh ‘mini-album,’ the equivalent of an EP. “Oddinary” features seven new releases, with a title track called, “Maniac.” 

K-Pop sensation Stray Kids, consisting of members Bang Chan, Lee Know, Changbin, Hyunjin, HAN, Seungmin, Felix and I.N, have been making their mark on the local and global music industry, writing 100% of their lyrics and participating in the composition and arrangement of their tracks. 

The album opens with a dark, powerful track alluding to the Marvel character Venom. The track has an accompanying music video that illustrates the members falling prey to someone or something, overpowered victims to a spider’s venom. This track is dark and intense, featuring a complex instrumental that includes sounds such as plucking strings and unsheathing knives. These details feed into the message of being at the mercy of another’s “fatal charms,” Stray Kids reveal in an interview with Nylon.

The title track, “Maniac,” develops the theme of embracing your unique qualities, that which people may scorn or perceive as ‘odd.’ This track most relates with the concept of the album, “Oddinary,” which is a play on the words ‘odd’ and ‘ordinary.’ With lyrics such as “expose your real self” and “stop pretending to be normal,” the track boldly demands we embrace our identities to the fullest. In their interview with Nylon, member Felix explains that they “relate to [their] fans with [their] crazy and oddinary sides.” The purpose of this track is to offer reassurance to their listeners and normalize any deviance from what society accepts as normal, which is a message that Stray Kids has been promoting since their debut. The group’s name itself encourages ‘straying’ from the easy or accepted path.

“Lonely St,” is also another song that delves into the emotions and struggles of the artists who are the same ages as many of us students and therefore may experience similar insecurities. They sing about pushing through their ‘exhaustion’ on the path that they walk alone. Although they feel defeated, they declare, “I’m the one to draw my own path.” I found myself relating with these lyrics, not only as a student but as a young adult attempting to navigate the intimidating and ever-demanding society around us. This album maintains Stray Kid’s bold identity through powerful lyrics, enticing sounds and striking visuals.