Monsta X's all-English album 'All About Luv' rises up the charts, but band loses yet another member
Vocalist Wonho left the group in October last year, while rapper Joohoney is on a leave of absence due to anxiety
Following the highly successful 'Take.2 We Are Here' album and 'Follow: Find You' EP last year, Monsta X are back with their English language album - a rarity for a KPop group - titled 'All About Luv'. And just as the title implies - it IS all about love!
Released on February 14 to match the album's concept, this was also a lovely Valentine's Day gift from the group to their fans who have been extremely supportive of them despite recent controversies and heartbreaks.
'All About Luv' features hit tracks 'Who Do U Love?' with French Montana (as well as a remix featuring will.i.am), 'Someone's Someone' (co-written by Monsta X's Shownu and members of Before You Exit) and 'Middle of the Night'. The album also features Pitbull on the track 'Beside U'. 'Love U' is produced by Andres Torres and Mauricio Rengifo of 'Despacito' fame.
Despite member Wonho being a part of the tracks on this album, he will not be seen in performances or the upcoming tour due to his departure last year.
The shocking news came after Wonho was accused of smoking marijuana by TV personality Jung Da-eun. Da-eun was, at the time, in a relationship with controversial former-trainee Han Seo Hee, who herself has been at the center of several idol-related scandals, including a follow-up to Wonho's scandal where she claimed fellow Monsta X member Shownu had an affair with a married woman. Shownu later clarified that while he had been in a relationship with the woman in question, he believed it was prior to her being married.
Seo Hee would later come out claiming she was assaulted by Da-eun when they were together and it contributed to her suicide attempt following the death of close friend Goo Hara of girl group Kara.
Da-eun's claims were that Wonho had smoked marijuana with Da-eun in 2013. While this is troubling enough on its own given South Korea's strict laws regarding drug use, the claim was also backed up by an executive involved in the Burning Sun scandal that saw several high-ranking officials, police officers, CEOs, and idols fall from grace due to links with sexual assault, prostitution, and embezzlement, among many other crimes.
Da-eun also alleged that Wonho owed Da-eun a large sum of money - around $26,000 according to Seo Hee - and that he had been previously incarcerated in a youth detention center for theft. Da-eun also claims Wonho stole from and attempted to sell stolen goods online.
“My Balmain silver jeans, Bang and Olufsen earphones, and Canon 420D camera were all gone. Later, I found out Wonho sold them online,” Da-eun states. While Jung Da-eun claims they did not initially suspect Wonho, they discovered the link after an acquaintance recognized the items and the phone number listed on the online marketplace as Wonho's.
The allegations made against Wonho were serious and eventually, the band was unable to fully promote their EP as they found themselves amidst a scandal. Wonho promptly left the group stating he did not wish his problems to impact other members. The group continued promotions with only six members following his departure.
Despite the trouble, most fans have been supportive of all seven members, especially international fans who crowdfunded a billboard in Times Square (raising over $25,000 in the process) asking for Wonho to return to Monsta X. It makes sense, therefore, that the group chose to release an album that's a gift to their entire fanbase and talks about love. They even dedicated the track 'Someone's Someone' to their fandom, saying they wanted to be their 'Monbebe's someone'.
Speaking about the album, member I.M. says: “It’s all about love and there are a lots of ways to express love.”
But just as things seemed to be getting better, Monsta X found themselves down one more member when rapper Joohoney took time off to deal with anxiety-related issues. The members, however, remain optimistic and supportive. Speaking about his absence, I.M. said: “He’s going to be on tour... He’s taking care of himself.”
And their optimism is certainly not misplaced - 'All About Luv' is already taking over the charts. Within a day of its release, it already jumped to number one in seventeen countries worldwide. Here's hoping the band can continue their successful run - preferably with no more bumps along the way.