Culture, Lifestyle

PSYCHIC FEVER from EXILE TRIBE on music, style & more

PSYCHIC FEVER from EXILE TRIBE on music, style & more

The gift of talent manifests in many different ways. It can be cultivated and refined, but never truly forced. Perhaps the greatest artistic tragedy lies in the undiscovered gem: a diamond left rough, a song written but never heard, a dance performed in an empty room. PSYCHIC FEVER, a breakout group from EXILE TRIBE, has defied such a fate. They are a treasure unearthed, refusing to stay buried.

PSYCHIC FEVER is a seven-member Japanese boy group consisting of TSURUGI, RYOGA, REN, JIMMY, KOKORO, RYUSHIN, and WEESA. They have long captivated audiences in their homeland. However, their global ascent is a recent phenomenon, fuelled by a viral explosion on social media.

For those who keep their finger on the pulse of K-Pop stan TikTok, February 2024 might ring a bell. It was then that the rest of the world collectively discovered PSYCHIC FEVER, captivated by snippets of “Just Like Dat” from countless angles. Many were left stunned and swooning at the group’s rap lines and dance moves. It was like finding something that had long awaited discovery, making the experience all the more pleasurable. Comments like “How come I haven’t recognised them sooner?” and “This should have been bigger” flooded the platform.

It has only been a few months since their viral fame, and they have attracted a huge following. Amassing a staggering 1.5 million TikTok followers and clocking in at 8 million streams for their hottest single on Spotify, their meteoric rise is undeniable. But for PSYCHIC FEVER, their path isn’t defined by just singular moments.

After establishing themselves as a cool, hip-hop-inspired group reminiscent of the 90s with “Just Like Dat,” they surprised fans with the release of the infectiously cheerful “BEE-PO.” This stylistic contrast goes further than just the duality of their music. Each member of PSYCHIC FEVER boasts a prominent personal style and identity, shunning a homogenous image in favour of individuality.

And, this is what exactly sets PSYCHIC FEVER apart from the sea of boy groups out there. The fusion of diverse personalities, their exploration of various music genres, and the candid charisma of each member have collectively lured in a devoted fanbase in less than just a few months. Intrigued by this very appeal, Men’s Folio sat down with PSYCHIC FEVER during their brief stopover in Kuala Lumpur for a coffee table conversation.

Hi PSYCHIC FEVER! It’s fantastic to have you back in Malaysia. This is your second visit, right?

KOKORO: We’re so grateful for all the love and support we’ve been receiving here in Malaysia. Since this is our second time visiting, we’d really love to come back even more often in the future. Ideally, we’d love to perform more music, host some live concerts, and of course, connect with all of our amazing fans in person!

It’s been nearly two years since PSYCHIC FEVER officially debuted. WEESA, what’s the absolute highlight of being part of the group?

WEESA: Performing has always been our passion, but getting to share that energy with audiences worldwide is an absolutely incredible honour. We were so grateful for the opportunity to visit Thailand, Singapore, and now, Malaysia!

Describe PSYCHIC FEVER in ten words or less.

JIMMY: [Laughs] How about “PSYCHIC FEVER has seven unique members”?

In your opinion, which PSYCHIC FEVER member perfectly captures the energy of the song? Who do you see as the face of “BEE-PO”?

KOKORO: Well, everyone says it’s me! I think I can switch between cute and cool depending on the mood, just like the song’s energy.

TSURUGI, your signature cowboy hat is a fan favourite. Do you want to share any backstory of the reason why you frequently have it on?

TSURUGI: So, the whole thing about me wearing this cowboy hat – it goes back to when I really loved cowboy style, cowboy fashion, and cowboys themselves. I admire their way of life and their style, especially how they embrace new challenges. It’s a style that’s important to me – not just because it looks cool, but also because it reflects the kind of strong and adventurous person I want to be.

Which member spends the most time scrolling on TikTok?

RYUSHIN: Me! I love watching dance videos and trying out those trending challenges. Right now, I’m totally obsessed with the “Magnetic Challenge” by Illit – it’s so catchy!

WEESA, you’re known for your love for fashion. Any particular reason why you’re into it?

WEESA: I have always loved dressing up. Even as a kid, I would experiment with mismatched pieces. It’s a part of my childhood that I carry with me today, hopefully into the future.

Out of all of you, who do you think is most likely to watch fan edits of yourselves?

RYOGA: I might be! But hear me out. Seeing the creativity and effort fans put into edits is an incredible source of motivation. It keeps me going and reminds me why we do what we do.

“BEE-PO” has super cute J-Pop sound and lyrics, while “Just Like That” goes full-on old-school hip-hop. What kind of concept are you guys dying to experiment with next?

JIMMY: We have always loved mashing up music influences from different genres and countries. We previously experimented with Miami bass and hip-hop, and with “BEE-PO,” we wanted to deliver a completely different vibe and beat. While we can’t spoil all our future plans, you can expect us to continue presenting a fresh feel with each release.

Once you are done with this story, click here to catch up with our May 2024 issue.