WINNER will return on July 5th. This news is enough to soothe fans who were anxious due to the members’ confessions of concerns and continuous comeback postponements.
This is the first time in two years and three months that WINNER makes a comeback as a whole group. On June 20th, YG Entertainment posted a release poster and delivered the news of WINNER’s comeback through their official blog. The poster with a cool background and the images of clouds and an airplane gives off a refreshing atmosphere, raising fans’ expectations for the comeback concept to the fullest.
Before announcing their comeback, WINNER members appeared on various programs and talked about their whereabouts.
WINNER guested on Channel A’s “Oh Eun-young’s Golden Clinic”, which aired on March 25th, and shared their concerns. Leader Kang Seung-yoon said that he felt like something was blocking WINNER’s way. He confessed, “The members don’t talk about their difficulties. I have never heard any member mention their hard time”. Member Lee Seung-hoon said that what he worried the most about this comeback was “the sense of distance between the members”.
Song Min-ho revealed that he suffered from panic disorder and bipolar disorder. He said, “I began to have the symptoms of panic disorders, such as difficulties in breathing, like I was going to die, from the end of 2017 so I went to the hospital.” He said that it felt like a tragedy as if he wouldn’t be able to do filmings again.
That was not the only time Song Min-ho mentioned his depression. He appeared on MBC’s entertainment program “I Live Alone” and shared some deep talks with Kian84 while enjoying their camping trip. When Kian84 asked if he was having a hard time when working, Song Min-ho replied, “I felt exhausted several times before. When I was doing promotions with my group, I hated the fact that my health condition affected not only myself but also other members. I didn’t want to cause any damage to the team so I forced myself to raise my tension but it didn’t work out. It was because of my severe depression.”
Song Min-ho’s personal situation, which contrasted with the success of his solo song “Fiancé” and his bright appearance on tvN’s “New Journey to the West” and “Kang’s Kitchen”, shocked fans. In particular, Song Min-ho gained huge love for his silly and pure image on entertainment shows.
On top of that, it was the delayed comeback that further fueled fans’ anxiety. As a whole, WINNER rarely made comebacks even though they appeared in entertainment programs such as Coupang Play’s “SNL Korea Season 2,” SBS’s “Dolsing Fourmen” and JTBC’s “Knowing Brothers.”
During his appearance in MBC’s “I Live Alone,” which aired on April 1, Song Min-ho said, “A new album will be released in April and May.” On “Radio Star,” he confirmed, “WINNER will make a comeback in May,” but there was no news about the comeback in both April and May. It was not until mid-June that the comeback trailer finally came out.
WINNER is a 9-year-old group who debuted in 2014 with “EMPTY”, which became such a hit that WINNER had their 1st music show win in only 4 days. In addition, all the title tracks of their following albums, including “BABY BABY”, “REALLY REALLY”, “LOVE ME LOVE ME”, “EVERYDAY” and “MILLIONS”, topped the music charts.
WINNER’s upcoming album is drawing attention as it marks the return of two members, Seung-hoon and Jin-woo, after their military service. Above all, this is going to be another summer comeback by WINNER. Each time they released a song that is full of refreshing summer vibes, they drew positive responses. Kang Seung-yoon said, “Now is WINNER’s time. Summer is here. We promise to show appearances of WINNER that is in season.”