Mark Tuan made his debut in the music world in 2014 with his K-pop boy band GOT7. Now, with the publication of his reflective album The Other Side, he has completed his first full solo endeavour.
Although Mark was one of the designated rappers in GOT7, the 20-song project gives the Los Angeles native the chance to show off his full repertoire. Every item on the album has songwriting and composition credits from Tuan, and the majority of the songs put Mark’s singing prowess front and centre. Mark also makes a comeback on The Other Side to the rap songs that fans originally heard him on while he was a member of GOT7, with braggadocio-heavy songs like “my name” and LP standout “change up.” in addition to the five vocally focused singles that have served as the album’s preview over the past nine months: “last breath,” “my life,” “lonely,” “save me,” and “imysm.”
The star’s candid introspections are what make The Other Side stand out above and beyond its musical components. He examines self-doubt (“hard 2 love”), poisonous friendships (“exhausted”), infidelity (“broken”), and the pressure to be ideal (“only human”) through his lyrics. The basic, low-fi production of the record does a better job of illuminating these difficult subjects.
Mark also sings about what seem to be all-too-relatable mental health difficulties, albeit it isn’t made plain in the lyrics, such as when he sings, “I sink down way into the floor/ You pull me up, but I’m too far…
On “at my low,” I said, “I’ve never been this low.” I’ll simply get f-cked up instead, it’s easier this way/ I found a means to escape the nasty ideas within my head” are two more striking lyrics from the song “lonely.”
The music video for “far away,” the album’s closing track and a kiss-off where Mark finally lets go of a toxic girlfriend, was released alongside The Other Side. “I gave you one last opportunity, and you f-cked it up/Now you’re far away / And I hope, that you know, that it’s where you’ll remain,” the song’s sad music video begins, looking back at the sweet memories and pictures from the relationship.
While Mark and his DNA Official team are solely responsible for the conception and design of The Other Side, GOT7 is also lending their support. BamBam, a fellow member of GOT7, uploaded a picture of his autographed copy of The Other Side with the caption, “myself and IGOT7s will always support what you do bro,” alluding to the band’s ardent following.