Concert Review: CIX Show Promise During ‘1st Concert REBEL in US Tour’

On Saturday, May 7, K-pop group CIX took the stage at the Vic Theater in Chicago, IL. The five-member boy group pronounced C-I-X, debuted on C9 Entertainment in 2019. Due to coronavirus (COVID-19), they could not meet their fans in concert until the current REBEL tour. The US leg kicked off in LA on April 27 and finished in New York City last night. 

Five members of the K-pop group CIX, who just had a tour, pose for the official tour poster.

CIX showcases impressive catalog during ‘1st Concert REBEL in US Tour’

Although only together for a few years, the members of CIX have recorded four EPs and two studio albums. Hits like “Jungle” and “Movie Star” gained the five members’ traction within the K-pop genre. 

Jinyoung, BX, Seunghun, Hyunsuk, and Yonghee were put together by C9 Entertainment in 2019. Jinyoung was previously in disbanded boy group Wanna One. BX was a contestant on a reality show for the group Mix Nine. Although he won a spot, the group never debuted. BX then competed on another reality show alongside Seunghun for a spot in YG Entertainment’s boy group Treasure. 

On Saturday night, the five members gave it their all performing 15 songs for their loyal fans, FIX. Most if not all of the audience knew every word to each song and waved their official CIX lightsticks in the air with pure joy when their favorites blasted through the sound system. 

The stage was bare with only a screen in the background to provide some visual stimulation. CIX performed to recordings of their music, but make no mistake, their microphones were on. The five members showed off their vocal talent throughout the concert. 

CIX group members shine in subunit performances

After performing four songs together, the CIX members broke into subunits for three cover songs. First up, Younghee and Seunghun performed their version of Justin Bieber and The Kid Laroi’s “Stay.” Both vocalists sounded like seasoned professionals. Seunghun brought a spark to the stage with boundless energy and enthusiasm. 

Next up Jinyoung and Hyunsuk performed a choreographed dance to T-Pain’s “Up Down.” They attacked the dance, eliciting loud cheers from the audience. Jinyoung seems to know dance is his forte and felt comfortable doing his thing. To his credit, Hyunksuk kept up with a natural rhythm and swag that complimented his group member.

The third performance was a rap cover by BX. They saved the best for last as the 24-year-old gave an impressive performance of “Christ Conscious” by Mac Miller, Joes Bada$$, and Casey Beggies. BX’s flow was on point and dangerously close to the original. He hopped around the stage with so much confidence it felt like watching a successful rapper, not a boy band member. 

The 3 song encore was the highlight of the concert

While the group sprinkled in a few cute videos and said hi to their adoring fans throughout the show, things moved quickly. During their encore, CIX performed two fan favorites and an endearing goodbye song. 

“Wave” from their first studio album CIX 1st Album ‘OK’ Prolouge: Be Ok was fun to experience live. K-pop groups are usually all-arounders meaning they can sing, dance, and rap. Every group tends to excel a tad more at one aspect than the others. For CIX their singing ability is their strength. Seunghun in particular is an impressive vocalist live.

The loudest cheers of the night happened when CIX started singing “Cinema.” One of the best K-pop songs released in the past five years, “Cinema” is a happy, infectious pop song. The crowd danced and smiled along with their favorite idols. 

CIX ended the night with “The One.” The feeling of love reverberated off the walls at the old Vic Theater as FIX reciprocated the love CIX showed them the whole evening. The crowd passionately sang the lyrics to the performers on stage. “I’ll protect you for a lifetime/ My one.”

CIX played 15 songs for the Chicago crowd at the Vic Theater

The setlist gave loyal fans songs from their debut EP up to their full-length albums. However, the group played more songs during the tour stops in South Korea, so fans who knew that setlist may have been disappointed with how many songs were cut. CIX performed “Imagine,” during soundcheck for a select group of lucky fans. 

  • “Blackout”
  • “Numb”
  • “What You Wanted”
  • “Like it that Way”
  • “Stay”
  • “Up Down”
  • “Christ Concious”
  • “Jungle” 
  • “Movie Star”
  • “Lost”
  • “Everything”
  • “Rebel”
  • “Wave”
  • “Cinema”
  • “The One”

The show was full but not sold old. Interestingly, tickets were all GA (General Admission,) even with a seated balcony at the Vic Theater. Therefore fans were able to just pick their own seat upstairs. It seemed like a missed income opportunity to not sell the individual seats, as some fans prefer concerts that are not standing room only.

CIX promised several times to return to the US and specifically to Chicago. During their first US tour, they represented themselves well and gave fans a memorable night.

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