Being their first full-length album, this was Why Don’t We’s chance to officially show the world who they are as a band, and they have no doubt done it tastefully, not only bringing in new fans from all over the world, but also doing their longtime fans proud. As member Corbyn Besson put it, “The 8 songs are like 8 love letters to our fans.” And thus, the album name, 8 Letters.
This album is the epitome of opposites. Starting off with 8 Letters, it talks about young love and the difficulty one finds in saying the 8 letters — ‘I love you’. A soulful tune, it is more than a cheesy love song as it shines light on a newer perspective of the overly-explored theme of timid love. Leaving fans in the dark as to what the 8 letters were, there was much speculation before we finally received confirmation from the boys themselves. This was followed by another single, Talk. This song explores the gnarly topic of a dysfunctional relationship but is presented in a subtle, more light-hearted way. This is one of the fan favourites, but the boys had a lot more in store for us.
Although not a single, Choose was definitely a hit as it showcased a more edgy side of Why Don’t We, with the pre-chorus being more of a rap than a vocal verse. This has only been seen once before in the history of Why Don’t We, in their single Trust Fund Baby, written by Ed Sheeran. They then proceed to show a softer side of themselves in In Too Deep, an arguable lyrical masterpiece. This song showcases more stripped down vocals, and is one that speaks to the fans through its melancholic yet relatable lyrics.
As the trend of opposites continue to fall in place in this album, Why Don’t We presented us with Friends, a groovy, light-hearted tune with lyrics revolving around… (you guessed it), friends! Giving us a taste of Latin American instrumentals, this might be a somewhat ‘typical boy band’ song, but don’t say we didn’t warn you when you start nodding your head to the music!
At this point it must be pretty hard to choose a favourite, but it does not get any easier, not especially when you listen to Hard. This one is more of a hidden gem, a reminiscent tune that is likely to grow on you.