Singer Chuu has made her long-awaited solo debut with EP "Howl."
The new album, launched Wednesday, marks Chuu's first solo foray, coming six years after she debuted as part of the group Loona, and after she was removed from the group in November due to a contract dispute.
The young musician, appearing tearful at her debut showcase, has had to chart a rough course, having fought with her past agency and needing to rebuild her career.
"I felt bad to be involved in an issue that I'd not intended. My fans were more hurt than I was, and that made me feel worse," she said speaking to the press.
"But like I said before, I haven't done anything shameful to the fans. I made this album out of that trust."
The event was held in Seoul a few hours before the release of "Howl" that evening.
Fronted by the namesake title song, "Howl" is a five-track EP that takes listeners on a journey of rediscovery.
The title track sends a comforting message with a story about two hurt people, becoming tiny yet powerful heroes for each other and healing one another.
According to Chuu, the lyrics are for herself and her supporters.
"The lyrics write out my honest heart that I haven't been able to speak out loud until now. We all have moments in life when we feel hurt and want to turn away from. I think this song helps to gain the courage to face that moment and howl out to the world," she said.
The expression "tiny hero" in the lyrics especially resonated deeply with her.
"I thought about what my tiny hero was, and it was singing. Not only do I enjoy singing but I gain confidence and comfort from it. Also, although they're not tiny heroes but giant heroes, my fans, Kkoti, have always stood by my side and have driven me to come this far," she said, adding, "I hope this song sails afar to empower many people."
Four other tracks on the album, "Underwater," "My Place," "Aliens" and "Hitchhiker," all of different genres from R&B to synth-pop, reflect Chuu's broad sonic spectrum.