Neo Zone is the second full album from the permanent NCT sub-unit, NCT 127. It was released on March 6, 2020.
II. Background & Release
After an extended US promotional tour and worldwide Neo City - The Origin concert tour through 2019, NCT 127 released a special single and video for "Dreams Come True" in celebration of 127 Day, its annual celebration on January 27, 2020. It also announced NCT's first studio release since We Are Superhuman in May 2019. This also marked the return of member Jungwoo from his medical hiatus.
On February 12, the timeline was announced for release, including information on the lead single, "Kick It." In addition to teasers and photos over the remaining weeks, track videos were also released before the album released on March 27, 2020. The album contains 13 songs primarily in Korean and came in 3 versions: N, C and T, which is also the digital version.
To support the launch, the group intended to tour in June 2020, but was postponed by the COVID-19 pandemic. 127 did become the first K-pop act to perform at Houston Livestock and Rodeo, an event that has hosted top tier talent such as Beyonce and Ariana Grande.
In addition to the title track "Kick It," the group performed the r&b ballad b-side "White Night" on Korean music shows.
|"Elevator (127F)"||Cheon Song-yi (Joombas)||Sylvester "Sly" Willy Siversten (Makeumine Works), Max "Wolfgang" McElligott, Shae Jacobs||Sylvester "Sly" Willy Siversten (Makeumine Works), Max "Wolfgang" McElligott, Shae Jacobs||3:29|
|"Kick It"||Wutan, Rick Bridges, danke (lalala Studio)||Dem Jointz, Mayila Jones, Ronde "Chikk" Bell, Deez, Ryan S. Jhun, Yoo Young-jin||Dem Jointz, Deez, Yoo Young-jin||3:53|
|"Boom"||See Ji-eum||Kevin White (Rice N' Peas), Michael Woods (Rice N' Peas), Andrew Bazzi (Rice N' Peas), MZMC||Rice N' Peas||3:29|
|"Pandora's Box"||JQ (MakeumineWorks),KimHye-ji (Makeumine Works), Taeyong, Mark, Johnny||Erik Lidbom||Erik Lidbom||4:09|
|"Day Dream"||Hwang Yoo-bin||Ian Jeffrey Thomas (NOPROMO Co), Hannah Wilson, Ariowa Irosogie, Andrew Beckner||NOPROMO Co||3:25|
|"Interlude: Neo Zone"||-||SQUAR (BLUR)||SQUAR (BLUR)||1:39|
|"Mad Dog"||Kim Boo-min, Taeyong, Mark||Hitchhiker, Charles "Chizzy" Stephens III, John Fulford III, Christopher Newland||Hitchhiker||3:03|
|"Sit Down!"||Hwang Yoo-bin, Tommy $trate||Harvey Mason Jr., Dewain Whitmore, Patrick "J. Que" Smith, Britt Burton||Harvey Mason Jr., Kevin Randolph||3:20|
|"Love Me Now"||Le'mon (Joombas), Rick Bridges||Mike Daley, Mitchell Owens, Deez, Wilbart "Vedo" McCoy III||Mike Daley, Mitchell Owens||4:08|
|"Love Song"||Seo Ji-eum, Taeyong, Mark, Johnny||The Stereotypes, Deez, Bianca "Blush" Atterberry||The Stereotypes, Deez||3:35|
|"White Night"||Ji Yu-ri, JQ (Makeumine Works), Kim Hye-jung (Makeumine Works)||Kenzie, Harvey Mason Jr., Kevin Randolph, Dewain Whitmore, Ester Na (The Wildcardz), Sadie Currey (The Wildcardz)||Harvey Mason Jr, Kevin Randolph||4:03|
|"Not Alone"||Jo Yoon-kyung||Nicki Adamsson, Michael Matosic, Michelle Elaine Buzz||Nicki Adamsson||3:45|
|"Dreams Come True"||Kim Woo-jung, Lee Chang-hyuk, Jeon Ji-eun (january 8th (lalalala Studio)), Kim Jeong-mi (January 8th (lalalala Studio)), Min Yeon-jae (lalalala Studio), Lee Hyo-jae (lalala Studio), Cheon Song-yi (Joombas)||LDN Noise, Deez, Bobii Lewis||LDN Noise||3:45|
IV. Spotify Playlist
Dreams Come True - 127 Day Special MV
Kick It MV
Kick It Performance MV
Neo Zone Track Videos:
Love Me Now
Kick It Teaser
Kick It MV Reaction
Kick It MV Commentary
Kick It Dance Practice
Behind The Scenes:
Kick It Recording Behind the Scenes
Kick It Behind the Scenes
Jacket Behind the Scenes
Kick It - The Stage
Kick It - Music Bank - March 6, 2020
Kick It - Music Bank - March 13, 2020
White Night (Live) - SBS Radio - Mar. 19, 2020
White Night - Music Bank - March 20, 2020
Kick It - NCT 2020 - MAMA Awards 2020 - Dec. 6, 2020
VI. Concept Photos
The album debuted on top of the Gaon Album Chart in Korea, while also earning the group its first top five entry on the U.S. Billboard 100. It also became the group's first release to receive a multi-Platinum KMCA certification. It also debuted at #1 on iTunes in 33 countries and on the U.S. Billboard World Albums Chart. By the end of the year, Neo Zone was the 13th best selling physical release in the US and 8th in Korea. It also reached #3 on the Japanese Oricon charts and #26 on Canadian Digital Album Chart. The album also charted in Belgium, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland and Scotland.
The lead single "Kick It" became the first top 30 entry and longest chart performance on the Gaon Digital Chart. It was #3 on the US World Digital chart. All of the Neo Zone songs, except for the interludes, charted on Gaon. The b-side "Sit Down!" reached #25 in the U.S. World chart.
The album was rated one of the top 10 K-pop albums of 2020 by Billboard and top 15 by the South China Morning Post, while "Kick It" was rated the best k-pop comeback of the year by the UK's Metro and "Love Me Now" one of the best b-sides by MTV News.